Back in September of this year, I presented a talk to the sangha on what a Buddhist response to racism might be. At the time, it was a single talk, but the many responses along the lines of “we need to talk more about this”, “thanks for bringing this up”, “I’ve been feeling troubled too," prompted more attention to the subject.
Since then, we have had two more programs covering this area. The topic is a challenging but necessary one, especially in light of even more overt hurtful and hate-filled speech of the recent weeks. My initial talk was in response to the violence over the last year in our country that was being overtly directed at people of color, people different than “us”. But as we all know, this issue has a long history.
On November 13, as part three of this series, Mick Malotte presented a program that gave us an opportunity to move forward in looking at the subject on an individual and more personal level. As he pointed out, this is not a problem that “others” need to figure out. It is one that “we”, as the majority in power need to figure out.
Sylvia Alcon has graciously offered to spearhead the creation of smaller, more intimate groups to continue this exploration. After Mick’s talk she took names of people who expressed interest in participating. If you would like to come to an initial meeting to see what this might look like, she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. She will send you a list of the materials that will be used so you can get a sense of how the groups might work. The initial meeting will be on December 7 at 4:45PM at Unity Church (our usual Sunday meeting place).