Reading – Week of 6/29

Reading and Questions for Reflection
(for your own practice and for discussion in Wednesday’s Soul Work gathering)

From To White People Who Want to Be ‘One of the Good Ones’ an opinion piece in the New York Times by Maeve Higgins.

There are a lot of reading lists being passed around among us whites. Besides books on racism and antiracism, there are documentaries to watch, conversations to unpack, privilege to be examined and a foreboding sense of work to be done.

We are determined to do that work and determined to let everyone know we are doing it. This work is deemed necessary so we can become better allies for black people in the fight for racial justice. … First up, I disagree that this is in fact work. Work is chores, and chores get done. … This is a lifelong project we get to approach with grace and curiosity and the full understanding that it will be difficult at times and beautiful at times and any chance we have to take part in it is frankly rather stunning. …

I hope you understand that grappling with this country’s brutal past and imagining a future that is fair is not something you are expected to do alone. You’re simply one drop in a new wave, a wave that slips easily into an ocean of people, deep and permanent, who have long been eroding the cliffs of white supremacy.

I hope this comes as a relief to you, as it did to me. [When you jump in], you’ll find leaders and peers there, all around you. You won’t worry then about messing up or getting lost; you’ll know at once where you’re needed. Much of the time that will be behind these leaders and peers, often beside them, or when faced with danger, you’ll be in front of them, bashing into the cliffs yourself so they can float and sparkle and enjoy the world away from the fight.

Questions for Reflection:

  • What are you holding as “work” that might be better looked at as a life-long project?
  • Where is the joy in your life?

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