Word: Waking up to pain is relentless. If I could name one thing in this life I am tired of, it is pain. Every now and then, I have a completely full pain-free day and I am amazed at the freedom and internal joy that can bubble up. That is not to say that I cannot have freedom and joy on days that are pain-full, but that it just has a little bit longer journey. There really isn't anything that can be done but to journey onward. And so I do. And so do so many. Pain comes in many forms. Physical pain. Emotional pain. Spiritual pain. There is truth to the idea that "all life is suffering." Now, in Buddhism, the idea is that suffering happens because of attachment to desire. That does happen. Suffering also just happens. Because of physical ailments or other things within or beyond people
Word: Sometimes, it seems like breathing is all you can do when we are hit with horrible news after horrible-er news. With the shootings in the news of Keith Lamont Scott, Terence Crutcher, a mass shooting in Baltimore, Burlington (WA), and now, today, Houston. What are we supposed to do? There is no social justice movement fast enough to prevent these deaths and the ones that will come before I can take my next breath. One of the principles of Peacemaking Circles is that the only person you can change is you. I have often told this to the kids I work with but I said it differently...the only person you can control is you. Soyinka Rahim says it this way, "I decide it for myself." We all decide, for ourselves, how we are going to show up. I think that is why one of the iconic pho
Word: Sometimes, I am so disappointed in people. Today is such a day. I received two stories of racism in Seattle yesterday and witnessed one on Sunday. A brief summary. A friend (African American, female presentation), who interacts with much of the same people I do, told me of her interactions with a person that I know. My friend was labelled as someone with "an attitude" as the first thing out of this woman's mouth. Then it was followed up with many micro-aggressions that all tended to put the label of "angry black woman" onto my friend. And also including the idea that my friend would not be smart enough which is a trope put onto black students for time immemorial. Another friend (African American, male presentation), told me they interacted with someone who simply told them, "