In every community, there is work to be done. In every nation, there are wounds to heal. In every heart, there is the power to do it - Marianne Williamson
This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Rohini Ross and Ami Chen Mills-Naim on my IC show. The topic of conversation was Spiritual Activism. A subject I’ve wanted to address for quite some time now, due to the increasingly tumultuous times we are facing here in the US.
As part of a spiritual community, I have noticed lately that there’s been some discord on how we should respond to the current crisis we are facing. And as such, I wanted to hear from two of my favorite 3 Principles Teachers what their thoughts were on the subject of Spirituality, Racism, and Activism.
I am grateful to both Rohini and Ami for their courage and willingness to talk about subjects that have become controversial, such as Black Lives Matter and Climate Change. I asked them what their personal experiences had been and what we can do as a community to help correct the injustices we see all around us.
Rohini shared that even though she is the child of a white mother and a Sri Lankan father, she still recognized that she was guilty of white privilege. This realization propelled her to write a blog post entitled “Neutrality is Heartless in the Face of Injustice.” The post garnered a lot of attention, and unfortunately, not all of it was supportive.
Ami also grew up in a mixed-race family, with a white father and a Chinese mother. As the daughter of the late Dr. Roger Mills, Ami grew up in the 3 Principles community and has been a pioneer in the world of activism since she was a young girl. Her fearless passion for talking about the issues that are close to her heart is inspirational.
I am also a privileged white woman. However, I have felt the secondhand sting of racism having been in interracial relationships myself. Growing up in the UK, my very first boyfriend was black. He was my first love. As a white girl dating a black boy in Wales, I received my fair share of racist comments. When I came to the US in the early eighties, I once again fell in love with a black man. This time my experience of racism was even worse. But it is nothing compared to the violence and discrimination our black and minority communities endures on a daily basis.
I can’t help but think when did talking about such matters as racial injustice and concern for the planet we are leaving for our children become controversial? Why, as a nation, have we become so fearful and concerned about any backlash we don’t express our opinions and concerns? And why do some spiritual communities put their heads in the sand and choose spiritual bypass as a means to cope with their discomfort?
I am guilty of this too. Before sitting down to write this post, I paused, wondering if I would offend someone and hear about it tomorrow. I also paused a few months ago before posting a Black Lives Matter frame around my photo on Facebook, afraid I might lose a potential coaching client. I paused before asking my hairdresser not to talk to me about her views on politics and race, for fear of upsetting her. I paused before putting my We Believe Black Lives Matter, Science is Real, Women’s Rights are Human Rights sign in my front yard in case of retaliation from my neighbors.
I paused, but thankfully I found the courage to do it anyway. I stood up for what matters to me. I let myself be seen and heard for what I believe in. I stopped being a people pleaser, knowing that I would lose some people along the way. And I did. I received hateful messages from white supremacists on my Facebook page, and my hairdresser fired me as her client. But I’m okay with that. Everyone has a right to their opinion, including me.
As a student and teacher of the 3 Principles, I see the psychological innocence behind all our actions, even of those who act in a hateful and violent manner. I understand that this type of behavior results from a low level of consciousness and fearful thinking. But just because I understand it does not mean I condone it and that I’ll stand by and do nothing to rectify the situation.
Inaction, on my part, is not an option for me anymore. I care deeply about humanity and those suffering from racial injustice, sexual discrimination, violence, and oppression. I care about global warming and the future of our planet. I care about our children’s future and who we elect to the White House. I care enough to speak out, take action, and do something about it.
With love and appreciation, Del 💕