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What is the Racial Equity Journey?

The 26-Day Racial Equity Journey is a chance to move from the question “what would I have done back then?” to “what will I do now?”  You commit to raise your awareness, deepen your understanding and shift old patterns of behavior. We do this with the goal of creating a world of equity. Each week has a theme and each day you will be given materials to engage with and questions to ponder.  At the end of 26 days you will have a wealth of knowledge to help you understand these issues, tackle difficult conversations and take action to effect change. The journey is available to all adults over 18 years of age and all genders.

How do I register for the journey?

You do not need to register or pay for this program. Simply scroll down this page to get started at anytime. You can choose to share your commitment by adding your name and location. If you prefer, you can remain anonymous and still add your location so that we can know how many people are joining the experience. No email or other personal information will be taken.

What is the purpose of the journey?

The purpose of this journey is to provoke thought and exploration, and to have a deeper conversation about racial equity. In Woman Within we believe that each person has their own answers - we are not here to give you a prescribed view on these issues. Our intention is to offer ideas and encourage you to stretch beyond what you already know and explore new territory, finding what you believe along the way. 

How much time will this take?

We have provided materials for 26 days and you can choose to do the challenges at any time, however please follow the journey in order. It has been created with intention. Each day's challenge will take 30 minutes (plus reflection time).  

Can I do this alone or with other people?

You can take the journey on your own, however this work is best done in community with others. We encourage you to find/create a group to discuss your experiences and reflections. This could be a circle of friends, family or even co-workers.  Take a look at these Guidelines for circles to help you in forming your group. If you are a woman, you can also join our private Woman Within at Home Facebook Group visit the Units section where you will find the Journey and where you can share your questions/reflections and find/give support.

 

What if I feel overwhelmed?

If you feel overwhelmed or notice discomfort in your body, sit with it. It might be that you simply do not agree with an idea; it might be that it is pushing you into a new way of thinking about something; and it might be that it is touching a piece of racial pain/trauma that you did not know existed. This journey is a descent, and will take us deeper and deeper into understanding. It will be important to notice the sensations within your body and the emotions that arise. We’ve included an 8-minute guided meditation to help you sink into your body any time that you feel disconnection. There may be times when a challenge triggers something painful within you. If this happens, please know that you are not alone and take a look at this resource to help you in these moments.  The work of racial healing can be hard, and with this in mind we’ve put together a short guide to self-care

 

Who created this journey?

Our team, Natasha Taylor (Woman Within Facilitator), Rebekah Ramirez (Diversity Director) and Thessa Bos (Global Liaison), has worked to craft a deep and transformative experience that aligns with Woman Within’s core values of inclusiveness, respect and integrity. This has been an intercontinental/cross regional effort and we have worked hard to draw on different perspectives. Given its sheer size, a lot of useful material comes from America. Please consider each resource in the context of your own country. The original concept of the 21-Day Racial Equity Challenge was developed by Dr. Eddie Moore, Jr., Dr. Marguerite Penick-Parks and Debby Irving, and it inspired this Journey.

 
Week One: Beginning

On our first day we take time to create the circle for this journey and set our individual intentions. During the week we explore some core concepts in the work of dismantling racism, and look at what it means to be an ally: someone who stands against inequality and interrupts discrimination and oppression. If you notice discomfort in your body, sit with it. It might be that you simply do not agree with an idea; it might be that it is pushing you into a new way of thinking about something; and it might be that it is touching a piece of racial pain/trauma that you might not have known existed. This journey is a descent, and will take us deeper and deeper into understanding. It will be important to notice the sensations within your body and the emotions that arise. We’ve included an 8-minute guided meditation to help you sink into your body any time that you feel disconnection. There may be times when a challenge triggers something painful within you. If this happens, please know that you are not alone and take a look at this resource to help you in these moments. 

DAY 1

 

Daily reflections:

  • What inspired/motivated you to join this journey?

  • What does it feel like to be a part of this 26-Day journey? How do you see yourself in this space?

  • What changes are you hoping to make as a result of taking this journey? 

  • Write down your intention in taking this journey

  • Notice what you’re experiencing in your body and what you’re feeling as you write your intention

DAY 2

 

Daily reflections:

  • How have you experienced conversations about race in the past? 

  • What aspect of this work feels the most uncomfortable for you? Consider what about it unsettles you.

  • What do you think could be the value in explicitly talking about race?

  • How has race impacted your life? If you are struggling to answer the question, can you identify why?

DAY 3

 

Daily reflections:

  • Has someone ever made a snap judgment about you that was wrong?

  • What groups of people do you trust or feel connected to? Who are you afraid of or run away from? Who does this keep safe? Who does this put at risk?

  • Reflect on instances when you have witnessed or were a target of implicit bias:

    • How did you respond?  What types of interventions worked for you? What didn’t work?

    • When have you chosen to be silent? What encouraged that silence?

    • What was the impact of your silence?

  • When you read “Some ways to interrupt bias” consider how you can apply those statements/questions to interrupt your own bias

DAY 4

 

Daily reflections:

  • As you reflect on the materials from yesterday on implicit bias, what do you think about the idea that a person can genuinely believe that racism is wrong and still hold implicit racial bias? 

  • Has your definition of a racist changed? If so, in what way?

  • If you are White:

    • Reflect on a time when you have been challenged about racism and felt a defensive reaction 

    • Can you notice any unexamined assumptions you might have been making? 

    • Is it possible that because you are White, there are some racial dynamics that you can’t see?

    • Imagine how you might handle the situation differently now

DAY 5

 

Daily reflections:

  • If you had been in the audience in today’s video, how long would it have been before you would have had to sit down? Why are the women's names and stories less known than the men's?

  • Why is it important to understand intersectionality when discussing race issues?

  • Why is standing against other bigotries so essential to standing against racism?

  • What do you notice in your body as this week comes to a close? What are you feeling?

 
Week Two: Listening to the "other"

This week we listen to stories. Deep listening is an act of love and respect in which we set down our own judgments and feelings, and step into the world of another.  Imagine this week as a road trip: we’re all hopping into a big metaphorical bus together, traveling from our homes into the bodies, hearts, and minds of others. As you listen this week, try to also hear what is not said. Listen for the emotions beneath the words. Listen for the pain, fear, anger, shame, and joy. Notice when you want to respond with an explanation or a story of your own. Notice when you want to defend yourself or challenge the other’s experience. Notice what happens in your body as you listen to the stories. 

 

“Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.” (Jimi Hendrix)

DAY 6

 

Daily reflections:

  • What are some ways in which you define other people through just one lens? How could you broaden your view to see them in all of who they are?

  • Have you ever felt pity for someone because of what you see on the surface? Have you wondered what other stories lie within them?

  • Think about times in your life when you were surprised that someone did something unexpected. As you reflect upon this, ask yourself, did you have a "single story" about them already programmed in your head?

  • How can listening to people who you disagree with make you stronger?

DAY 7

 

Daily reflections:

  • What have you learned about how it feels to be a young Black person in the world?

  • If you have children, have they ever questioned their beauty and value on the basis of the color of their skin? How would you talk to your child if this were the case?

  • Have you ever felt afraid that your children/family members were in danger because of the color of their skin or how they look? If not, how do you think that might influence your daily life?

  • How young were you when you learned about race?  Did your parents ever talk to you about race? What did they say? If you have children, have you ever talked to them about race? How old were your children when you had this conversation for the first time?

DAY 8

 

Daily reflections:

  • Think of times when you had to leave behind something about your heritage, or family traditions, just to be able to fit into a group. How did that feel? Or have you never had to do that?

  • In each of these stories, the culture and wisdom of the indigenous community has been broken, primarily by force. Imagine losing your home/culture/language against your will. What do you notice in your body as you contemplate this happening? What do you imagine might be the impact on the individual, family and community of losing these aspects of themselves?

  • What do you think is your responsibility in healing the past? Do you have a responsibility?

DAY 9

 

Daily reflections:

  • Have you ever wondered if you are "white/black/brown enough," or American* enough" [*replace with your home country]? What does that feel like? Have you ever considered this same question about others?

  • Compare the experiences of all these different people. What are some of the similarities you see?

  • Have you ever noticed someone who appears to not be "assimilated" into the culture of your country? How does that feel? What does being assimilated into the culture mean to you? What are the costs to society when different cultures are forced to assimilate into the majority's culture?

  • As you listen to the stories, is your understanding of “race” shifting or evolving? If so in what way?

DAY 10

Daily reflections:

  • If you could choose to have a conversation with one of the groups shown this week, which one would you choose and why? What would you want to ask them? What would you want to learn from them?

  • What part of your story or your ancestors story would you want to be known by the people around you?

  • How can you help amplify people’s voices and stories?  

  • What do you notice in your body as this week comes to a close? What are you feeling?

 
Week Three: Intergenerational Trauma

Research shows that the effects of trauma in one generation can be carried across many generations. This is known as Intergenerational (or Historical) Trauma. It means that we each potentially carry some part of the physical, emotional and spiritual wounds of our ancestors and the times in which they lived. We have the opportunity to heal this cycle so that the next generation can be free from it. This week we explore how the generations living today carry pieces of trauma from significant moments in history. There are innumerable painful historical events around the world and we cannot explore all of them this week. We have therefore chosen to focus on the transatlantic slave trade, the years that followed and some of the most traumatic aspects of colonization.  Some of what you will read/watch/hear is graphic and will most likely be painful to experience. We will be stepping into the stories of those who were enslaved, colonized and oppressed. We are aware that this could be triggering for the descendants of people in these stories and we encourage you to do what you need in order to feel safe. As we journey this week, it will be important for us all to be in our bodies. This means, to be aware of what you are experiencing in your body as you watch and listen. 

 

Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” (James Baldwin)

DAY 11

Daily reflections:

  • Take some time to consider significant historical events that took place in the countries in which your ancestors lived. What might be the historical traumas that need to be healed?

  • As we move through this week, regularly remind yourself to slow down and sink into your body:

  • Notice what you are experiencing in your body

  • Notice what you’re feeling and where this is in your body

  • Notice what this feeling, looks like, even sounds like within your body

  • Notice what your body wants to do with this feeling

DAY 12

 

Daily reflections:

  • Yesterday we discussed the concept of intergenerational trauma. What was the trauma inflicted on enslaved people physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually?

  • What do you think was going on inside an enslaved person's body during slavery? What might have been passed down from one generation to the next, within their bodies?

  • What do you think was going on inside a slave trader’s or owner's body? Were they settled and at ease? What might have been passed down to these people to allow them to tolerate and perpetrate such violence? What did they then pass down to the next generation?

  • What do you think was going on inside a small White child’s body as she witnessed years of violence, brutality and dehumanization against enslaved people? What might that child pass down to the next generation?

  • Now notice what you are experiencing within your own body.

DAY 13

 

Daily reflections:

  • What did you know about the use of forced labor in America prior to today? Did anything in these materials surprise you? 

  • What do you imagine it was like for newly emancipated people to be told that they were finally free only to find themselves once again bound into a different kind of oppression? What might that have felt like physically, mentally and emotionally? What strategies might the Black community have utilized to survive? 

  • What might White children during those years have internalized about the Black population as a whole? What unconscious messages might have been passed down across the generations?

  • What "habits and practices" do you imagine White people might have developed in order to participate in community lynchings? What might have been passed down generationally that survives to this day? 

  • What do you see in society today that reminds you of the public lynchings of the past? What do you see playing out in society today that reminds you of the dehumanization of enslaved people?

  • Research into Intergenerational Trauma teaches us that present-day issues faced by People of Color, combined with current discrimination, may be persistent reminders of the traumas endured during slavery and oppression. How does this idea influence your understanding of the prominent racial issues playing out today?

DAY 14

 

Daily reflections:

  • If anything is to be done with the Indian, we must catch him very young. The children must be kept constantly within the circle of civilized conditions.” (Nicholas Flood Davin 1879). As we researched materials for this project, we noticed a common theme in which children were ripped from their families and stripped of their name, language, community and traditions, with the specific intent of destroying the culture. What do you think and feel as you contemplate this systematic abuse of children?

  • How might the parents, families and communities that these children belonged to have been impacted by their forced removals?  

  • The forced removal of children from their families, also steals away the opportunity for their families to pass down knowledge, values and skills. How might the inability to pass down this wisdom impact the world today?

  • How would you describe your relationship to your culture?  How important is your culture to your identity as an individual? How would you feel if you were no longer allowed to identify with your own culture?

DAY 15

 

Daily reflections:

  • Has anything shifted within you this week? If so, what do you notice?

  • We spent this week exploring intergenerational trauma. In what new ways can you see the trauma from these stories being carried across generations through to present day?

  • If you consider the country where you live, can you see how parts of it’s painful history might carry trauma into the present day?  What more do you need to learn?

  • For many the past two weeks will have been intense. If possible, find some time to do this meditation: Honoring all our relations meditation (30 mins)

 
Week Four: What is "Whiteness"?

This week we explore what it means to be White. For many White people, we never consider how whiteness affects our daily life. Until we can understand the ways in which we are living a racialized life, we can’t deeply connect with and understand how people of other races are impacted by their race. Later in the week, we explore shame and the ways in which it shows up in racial work. Guilt is that feeling we have when we believe we’ve done something wrong. Shame is when we believe we are inherently wrong. We explore the specific shame that comes from being consciously or unconsciously enrolled in this thing called whiteness. We then explore the concept of Shame Resilience and the courage it takes to move through shame into deep authenticity. As you watch and read, pay attention to what happens in your body, and breathe. 


“The story of an oppressed people is also the story of an oppressing people. For example, the story of a slave is also the story of a slave master.” (White awake).

DAY 16

 

Daily reflections:

  • What thoughts and feelings did you notice while you watched Nora speaking about her need to understand and take responsibility for her family's past actions?

  • Nora differentiates between taking accountability for the past collectively and on a more personal level. What has been your experience with each?

  • Nora reflects that in her school days the focus was on the collective and that she was not given tools to navigate and deal with her personal family’s role in history. What might be useful tools to do that? 

  • Reflecting on your own country's history, to what extent does it impact the present? How does that show up in your life?

  • Nora concludes that it is essential that we continue to reflect on how to teach about the Holocaust to new generations. How did you learn about significant historical racial events such as the transatlantic slave trade or apartheid? Was it taught in a way that allowed you to reflect on the collective and personal responsibility? 

  • If you were to write and illustrate your own personal book about your family's role in the racial history of your country, what would it look like? What might surprise you? What aspects need further research?

  • How does studying the past help you take responsibility in the present? Why is this important work?

DAY 17

 

Daily reflections:

  • The following reflections are, first and foremost, an invitation to White people to reflect on their racial identity. However, these questions can also be used as a tool if you identify with a different race by replacing the word 'White' with your racial identity:

    • When was the first time you realized you were White?

    • When was the first time you realized you might be treated differently because of the color of your skin? When was the first time you realized people of other racial identity groups are treated differently?

    • What were the messages you heard growing up about people with different color skin?

    • “To me, being White means…” (spend some time finishing this statement. Think about what it means physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually)

    • What part of White racial identity is important to you?

    • Imagine you were asked to stand up if you feel proud to be White, would you stand? If so, why? If not, why?

    • What does it feel like within your body to be White?

    • Notice what you think and feel when you consider that Whiteness is a social construct

DAY 18

Daily reflections:

  • If you identify as White, when you think of your childhood and family dynamics, in what ways have you been "recruited" into whiteness?

  • In “Healing the Dominant Group”, the author says: “If the wound of the dominant group is never discovered and articulated – so that there are direct ways to process and heal from that pain – then I think it keeps real racial justice from happening.” This explores the idea that White people also carry a piece of racial trauma that needs to be healed. What do you think and feel, and what do you notice in your body as you consider that this could be true?

  • In “Not Somewhere else, but here” the author describes the White wound as “a splitting of mind, body, and soul; neighbor from neighbor; disciplines of knowledge from disciplines of knowledge...I am speaking of a loss of wholeness within myself and a concomitant segregation and fragmentation of culture that debilitates life for all of us.”  What might be some examples of fragmentation within your country as a result of racial injustice?

  • In “Not somewhere else, but here” the author says that to secure true racial justice, we need to become more present to the connections between our childhood and the present; the past with the future, and in doing so become more "present" to the world around us: 

    • What culture were you born into? 

    • What is the beauty (the good) within your culture? 

    • What does it mean to be a “good human being” within your culture?

    • What elements of that culture were racially oppressive? 

    • How did your community respond to this oppression?

    • What were the responses to this within your own family?

    • What have you dismissed/denied/refused to see around oppression in your culture?

    • As you look back at yourself as a child, can you see a racial wound that you carry? If so, what is that wound for you? What does it feel like within your body?

DAY 19

 

Daily reflections:

  • When you reflect on traumatic racial events in history, do you notice any guilt or shame within? How would you describe that guilt or shame? What does it feel like in you? What color, quality, sound does this feeling(s) have in you?

  • Brene Brown suggests that everyone has specific shame triggers. What are your personal racial shame triggers?

  • Shame likes to stay hidden. What might be something that you haven’t said or expressed around race and racism that needs to be shared? 

  • Brene Brown describes “shame resilience” as a way of moving through shame into a place of courage and connection, and Heather Hackman writes that the dynamics which corrode connection thrive in isolation. It is therefore essential to reach out to others and share our questions, fears and shame, so that we can stay grounded and present in the conversation about racial justice. Today we offer a challenge: find at least one person with whom you commit to reach out to in moments when your racial shame gets triggered.

DAY 20

 

Daily reflections:

  • Reflect on your ancestors. In your mind's eye, see your parents, grandparents and great-grandparents. Now imagine the places and times that they lived through:

    • What do you imagine might be the cultural/racial trauma that you carry from them? 

    • What might have been passed down from within your ancestors’ bodies into your own body?

    • Imagine you’re holding in your hands what was passed down. What does it look like? What quality does it have (color, shape, consistency)? What does it feel like?

    • If you could release something that might have been passed down to you, what would it be?

Optional weekend materials

The past two weeks in the journey teach us that racial healing isn’t limited to learning and changing on an intellectual level. We need to also find ways to shift and heal racial trauma within our bodies. When you have time, we invite you to explore a few different ways of identifying and releasing the trauma in your body:

 
 
Week Five: Understanding systemic racism

This week we explore systemic racism, also called structural or institutional racism, and we consider what we can do individually and collectively to affect change. Systemic Racism is a term describing racial discrimination that is embedded in the procedures/processes of society’s systems and structures. This includes criminal justice, employment, housing, health care, political power, education and more. “It can manifest in policies, procedures, unspoken norms and routines that push people into different paths of opportunity, where some individuals have greater access and others have less, due to race” (Laura Morgan Roberts). We know that to explore these issues in depth, we would need weeks! We therefore offer a snapshot into different aspects of systemic racism, and encourage you to use these materials as a jumping off point to learn more about your own country and how systemic racism plays a part in daily life. On Day 26 we will be sharing a list of resources to continue exploring, learning and raising your awareness. We will also be sharing a list of ACTION steps that you can take to dismantle racism.  

 

At the beginning of this journey we shared that we believe each person has their own answers. We offer this as a reminder that we are not here to give you a prescribed view on these issues. People have many ideas about why racial inequities exist, and we all may agree and disagree. We encourage you to use this week as a way of considering which area(s) of racial equity resonate with you, so that when we step beyond this 26-Day Racial Equity Journey, you can draw on what you’ve learnt to be an agent of change in the world around you.

 

“The beauty of anti-racism is that you don't have to pretend to be free of racism to be an anti-racist. Anti-racism is the commitment to fight racism wherever you find it, including in yourself. And it's the only way forward.” (Ijeoma Oluo)

DAY 21

 

Daily reflections:

  • Robin DiAngelo says that “we're complicit in racist structures even if they go against our values or beliefs.”  If you aren’t personally racist, in what ways are you responsible for dismantling racism?

  • In the interview, DiAngelo says she's often asked by White people, “"What do I do?" and she advises, "Make a list of why you don't know what to do...Whatever is on your list, let it guide you." What is on your list?

  • As you consider The Unequal Opportunities Race:

    • In what ways have you experienced the unequal opportunities race? 

    • What has been passed on to you and what are you trying to pass on to your children? 

    • Have you noticed other people at work, in school, or in your life, who are ahead in the race? Reflect on what may have allowed them to get ahead in addition to their own efforts.  

    • What would happen if they or their ancestors were to encounter the obstacles that People of Color encounter in this race?

  • In The characteristics of white supremacy culture, the author asks the questions: “Which of these characteristics are at play in your life? In the life of your organization or community?” How would you answer those questions?

  • Reflect on the various aspects of your identity and how you receive privilege because of some aspects and/or are discriminated against because of others. Areas to consider include: race, gender, sexual orientation, physical ability, education, income, nationality, homeownership, languages spoken, family support, and social networks. 

  • If you are White reflect on a time when, unconsciously or not, whiteness worked to your advantage.

DAY 22

 

Daily reflections:

  • In her TED Talk Kandice Summer says: “Institutionally speaking, our public school system has never done right by the black and brown child”:

    • What have you observed in the public school system where you live?

    • How do you define equity and equality? How do you distinguish between the two in education? 

    • Most children of color in American schools do not see their own culture reflected back to them in school.  What do you think is the impact of this on children? How do you think honoring and integrating culture into the curriculum might affect positive change?

    • How would teaching children about racial injustice affect positive change?

  • Michelle Alexander says that we haven’t ended the racial caste system in America, but rather re-designed it in the prison system locking "People of Color into a permanent second class status”

    • What thoughts and feelings come up for you as you hear this?  What about it surprises/challenges you? 

    • How does a racial caste system impact the way you live? How does it make your world better/worse?

  • Consider the charts reflecting the US justice system:

    • What are your thoughts when you see the statistics? How do these charts compare to your country? 

    • What do you think about the connection between a racially biased education system and mass incarceration, and the impact of this criminal justice system on communities of color?

  • Safety is often given as the reason for incarcerating so many individuals. If we assume that safety is of importance, what might be other ways for a community to achieve a sense of safety for everyone?

DAY 23

 

Daily reflections:

  • What about the videos about racial equity in the US medical system surprises, challenges, and/or moves you?  

  • Harriet Washington asks the questions: “As African Americans we’ve been abused for so long consistently by the system, why should we trust it, why should we go to it when we’re ill?”:

    • What do you notice within yourself as you hear about the history of racial abuse in healthcare?

    • What are the different ways patients might act if they are mistrustful of their medical providers? 

    • In what ways could this mistrust affect the ability of patients to get good health care?

    • How might individual physicians work to build deeper trust?

  • As a medical student, Malone Mukwende observed that he was only taught the clinical symptoms on white skin:

    • Did this surprise you? 

    • As you consider this gap in knowledge what do you think and feel?

    • What do you think could be the health implications for People of Color if their doctor is not aware of variations in symptoms?

  • Consider how you are affected by racial health inequities (either positively or negatively):

    • If you have been a patient, have you ever questioned whether your healthcare was influenced by the health provider's unconscious bias?

    • If you work in the healthcare system, have you experienced or noticed unconscious bias at work when dealing with patients?

DAY 24

 

Daily reflections:

  • The information today indicates that people in the USA are living in mostly segregated communities: 

    • What do you imagine will happen if we don't do anything to create a more integrated society? 

    • When you compare your own country to the USA, what similarities/differences do you notice?

    • Can you see a racial wealth gap in your neighborhoods? In what ways does it manifest? 

  • “The most profound message of racial segregation may be that the absence of people of color from our lives is no real loss. Not one person who loved me, guided me, or taught me ever conveyed that segregation deprived me of anything of value.” (Robin D’angelo)

    • Did you grow up in a racially segregated environment? Do you live in one now? 

    • What messages were you given about a racially diverse environment? 

    • What did you gain from the environment in which you grew up (whether it was segregated or integrated)?

    • What were some things you missed out on because of where you lived?

  • In the article above, the authors point out that during slavery Black people were “forced to work as agricultural, domestic, and service workers” and that to this day, people of color remain “overrepresented in the lowest-paid agricultural, domestic, and service vocation":

    • How might the various policies mentioned in the article prevent families of color in the USA from accumulating wealth over generations? 

    • If you live in another country, what similarities do you see in the communities of Color in your country?

DAY 25

 

Daily reflections:

  • As you consider the current racial issues that matter most deeply to you, explore these questions:

    • Where do you hurt? What is the source of this hurt?

    • What is it about these issues that resonate with you?

    • What does justice mean to you? What does justice look like to you?

    • What unique skills could you bring to addressing these issues?

    • What are the personal challenges you might face in addressing them? 

  • Ruby Sales says "I propose that we must look deeply into the culture of whiteness. That it is a river that drowns out all of our identities and drowns us in false uniformity to protect the status quo":

    • What might be areas in which you have a personal stake in maintaining the status quo?

    • How might this affect your attitude towards effecting change?

    • What happens when you take a broader view? 

  • Have you ever researched the White people who stood against racism? If you are White, what might you learn from them as you move forward as an Ally in racial justice

  • Ruby Sales says that each human must "move out of the constructs of whiteness, brownness and blackness to become who we are at our fullest." And that to do this we must tell our individual stories, together. Consider what story you need to tell. Consider what story you can create moving forward.

Weekend material for rest and rejuvenation

We are almost at the end of this 26-Day Racial Equity Journey; yet it is also the beginning (and for many people the continuation), of a long journey towards racial justice. We offer these resources as a way to take time and allow yourself to rest:

DAY 26 and beyond...

Today we bring this part of the journey to a close. In addition to the final day’s materials, we have included a list of resources for you to continue on your own or in groups. We have also included a list of action steps that you can take to affect change in your chosen area of racial equity. For now, we offer our gratitude to everyone who took this journey. Once again imagine us sitting in a circle, the candle has almost burnt out and so much has been shared.  Notice what you’re experiencing in your body and what you’re feeling. Look back at the intention you set on Day 1. What is your sense of that intention now? Did you achieve something you intended? Has your intention changed? Notice what you are feeling in your body? What does that look like and feel like within you?

DAY 26

 

Daily reflections:

  • In We are the weavers Melody uses the analogy of weaving to explain how we are each contributing to a legacy. She says “You are an ancestor to generations yet unborn” and you “carry the legacy forward and [you] are the legacy yourselves.” 

    • What does legacy mean to you?

    • What is the legacy you are carrying forward from your ancestors? 

    • What is the legacy you are creating through your life and will leave when you die?

  • In Healing a nation through truth and reconciliation, Chief Dr Robert Joseph speaks of a time that has come for reconciliation in his home country of Canada. Reflect on what this means to you and how you can be a part of reconciliation in your own country 

  • In Living with intent, Mallika Chopra asks three questions that her father used to ask after each daily meditation. As you reflect on your own personal journey through this 26-day Racial Equity Journey, ask yourself:

    • Who am I?

    • What do I want?

    • How can I serve?

Congressman John Lewis asked that the following be published on the day of his funeral:

 

While my time here has now come to an end, I want you to know that in the last days and hours of my life you inspired me. You filled me with hope about the next chapter of the great American story when you used your power to make a difference in our society. Millions of people motivated simply by human compassion laid down the burdens of division. Around the country and the world you set aside race, class, age, language and nationality to demand respect for human dignity.

 

That is why I had to visit Black Lives Matter Plaza in Washington, though I was admitted to the hospital the following day. I just had to see and feel it for myself that, after many years of silent witness, the truth is still marching on.

 

Emmett Till was my George Floyd. He was my Rayshard Brooks, Sandra Bland and Breonna Taylor. He was 14 when he was killed, and I was only 15 years old at the time. I will never ever forget the moment when it became so clear that he could easily have been me. In those days, fear constrained us like an imaginary prison, and troubling thoughts of potential brutality committed for no understandable reason were the bars.

 

Though I was surrounded by two loving parents, plenty of brothers, sisters and cousins, their love could not protect me from the unholy oppression waiting just outside that family circle. Unchecked, unrestrained violence and government-sanctioned terror had the power to turn a simple stroll to the store for some Skittles or an innocent morning jog down a lonesome country road into a nightmare. If we are to survive as one unified nation, we must discover what so readily takes root in our hearts that could rob Mother Emanuel Church in South Carolina of her brightest and best, shoot unwitting concertgoers in Las Vegas and choke to death the hopes and dreams of a gifted violinist like Elijah McClain.

 

Like so many young people today, I was searching for a way out, or some might say a way in, and then I heard the voice of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on an old radio. He was talking about the philosophy and discipline of nonviolence. He said we are all complicit when we tolerate injustice. He said it is not enough to say it will get better by and by. He said each of us has a moral obligation to stand up, speak up and speak out. When you see something that is not right, you must say something. You must do something. Democracy is not a state. It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself.

 

Ordinary people with extraordinary vision can redeem the soul of America by getting in what I call good trouble, necessary trouble. Voting and participating in the democratic process are key. The vote is the most powerful nonviolent change agent you have in a democratic society. You must use it because it is not guaranteed. You can lose it.

 

You must also study and learn the lessons of history because humanity has been involved in this soul-wrenching, existential struggle for a very long time. People on every continent have stood in your shoes, though decades and centuries before you. The truth does not change, and that is why the answers worked out long ago can help you find solutions to the challenges of our time. Continue to build union between movements stretching across the globe because we must put away our willingness to profit from the exploitation of others.

 

Though I may not be here with you, I urge you to answer the highest calling of your heart and stand up for what you truly believe. In my life I have done all I can to demonstrate that the way of peace, the way of love and nonviolence is the more excellent way. Now it is your turn to let freedom ring.

 

When historians pick up their pens to write the story of the 21st century, let them say that it was your generation who laid down the heavy burdens of hate at last and that peace finally triumphed over violence, aggression and war. So I say to you, walk with the wind, brothers and sisters, and let the spirit of peace and the power of everlasting love be your guide.”

 

Amen.”

 

© Woman Within International 2020

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