I continue to sit and ponder the question, “Could I be doing more?” On one hand, the answer will always be yes. Until there is justice and equity in the world, there is more work to be done. But living with that question all day, every day, trying to balance our activism with our need for self-care, can leave us feeling overwhelmed, anxious, and burnt out. If we don’t go to a march, attend a rally, or a sit-in at our legislature’s office, we can often be left feeling like we’re letting ourselves down, and not fully living our UU values. We may worry that we’re not doing everything we can when we are unable to show up for these important justice events.
Showing up is of course incredibly important. But there are multiple ways to show up, and there are multiple avenues that we can explore to actively work towards being anti-racist. The important thing to remember is that this is a very long journey. And part of showing up is taking care of ourselves mentally and physically. That’s why I really loved a recent email that I got from the meditation app, Calm. I’ve talked about this app before, and recently, they sent an email lifting up people of color who we can learn mindfulness practices from, and also an article entitled “How to use mindfulness to stand in solidarity with the Black Community.”
In the article, they highlight “11 ways that your meditation practice can help you combat racism.” The ways they highlight include:
- Sit with discomfort
- Meet your mistakes with equanimity
- Honor similarity and difference
- Expand your awareness
- Hold space for anger
- Let things be complex
- Summon courage
- Decenter yourself
- Check-in with care
- Keep showing up
- Practice self-care
Please check out the article for a breakdown of each of these points. I also highly encourage you to check out the second blog post from Calm, entitled Black Lives Matter, in which they provide countless links to people of color who do and teach mindfulness and meditation. They lift up Mindfulness Leaders, authors, podcasts, and movement teachers. I’ve included all of their links below for easy access; I did not curate this list.
Please check out these resources and let me know if there are more you’d like me to add to this list. We can keep this as a living, breathing document that we can return to during this long, long path. Stay well, friends.