The awful events of the past few months in the US – the murders of George Floyd, of Brionna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, and the heavy handed response to the protests – evoke anguish and rage in many of us. It is easy to condemn what is happening across the water in another country, but these events also invite us to look at racism and prejudice in our own society and in our own hearts and minds.
The Mindfulness Centre wishes to express solidarity with the black community in Ireland as you encounter the injustice and immense grief of this moment. We want to support you (and other groups who suffer discrimination) in any way we can. Holding all of this is made even harder because we must be physically isolated from one another during the COVID-19 pandemic, when we long to come together in community to show our solidarity.
Mindfulness is often seen as self-indulgent, something one does in isolation. But mindfulness is an ethical practice which asks us to find ways to respond to systemic oppression with wisdom and compassion. If we only view mindfulness practice as a way of improving ourselves it will be sterile. We believe we all have a responsibility to educate ourselves about the truth of racism in our society, to bring our practice into the world, and to do what we can to attend to this suffering and its causes, with fierce compassion. We are responding as a Centre to this challenge in several ways and will be telling you about some of this in the days and weeks ahead.
The Team at The Mindfulness Centre