I’m feeling very conflicted after hearing a dharma talk at my zen center today. The topic was the recent killings of nine African Americans in South Carolina last week by a white man. What happened in that church and what has been happening in this country, the light that is being shed on: the inequities to people of color.
The murdering of people of color.
The time is here and now. I bear witness to all this madness, every day, on my cushion. And, into the day, I carry this awareness with me. I’ve been working with taking my time and being present, really attentive, to whatever it is I am doing; eating, working, walking the dog, making love as well as listening to the cries of my brothers and sisters.
I don’t believe saying that the white race is solely responsible for the racism in this country is the answer. What we are capable of doing, and have been doing to one another, as a human race, since the dawn of time is incomprehensible.
I don’t know how I feel about being strongly encouraged to look at my own racism, in a dharma talk, at my zen center, is why I attend. What feels correct to me, is receiving the teachings of the Buddha, and then applying these teachings, practically, in my daily life, as I see appropriate.
To wake up.
Fundamentalism can happen anywhere, even with the best of intentions.
As long as we stay with what’s right vs. what’s wrong; we perpetuate duality.
And this implies that there is, in fact, at the end of the day, only one way.
I am far from done with sitting with all of this. I am willing to look at how I interact with people of color on a daily basis. I don’t know if I’m willing to have someone interpret the dharma and how it should be applied to an issue as deep and as complicated as racism.
I don’t know.
This is good.
“Not knowing (the first of the three tenets of a peacemaker), thereby giving up fixed ideas about myself and the universe.”
In deep gassho to the nine men and women killed at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina.