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Nov 22
Tuesday

Social Action Work in Shambhala

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Social Action Work in Shambhala

The Shambhala Global Services Communications Team would like to share some of the social action initiatives of Shambhala members, Groups, Centers, Shambhala Online, and Shambhala Global Services. As the Shambhala community continues to move in the direction of “social action as dharma path”, we want to share these endeavors and help affirm how social action and activism intersect with our path as dharma practitioners. We invite you to read more below about the important steps in this direction that are taking place in the Shambhala community. 

We’d like to offer our heartfelt thanks to all those who are committed to creating a diverse and inclusive Shambhala. From creating BIPOC spaces in our community to engaging in the work of understanding white conditioning and privilege, you are making enlightened society possible. And we would like to note that while the work described below is primarily about the BIPOC community, Shambhala supports social action work being done to raise awareness for all underrepresented groups –  all are welcome as members of the Shambhala community. 

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Sacred Activism – Shambhala Online

Shambhala Online is pleased to announce the Sacred Activism Series, an ongoing series of courses and retreats that will explore how social engagement and activism intersect with the Shambhala Teaching and the Buddhadharma. “Activism Is Dharma” is the first in this series and is coming up soon on December 10, 2022. The intention of this first retreat is for participants to leave with a stronger sense of what sacred activism means to them and how one might engage in the world with this deeper understanding. Please click here to read more about this one-day retreat that includes guided meditation and explorations on what sacred activism – and activism without aggression – can mean both individually and collectively. 

In March 2023, the series will continue with Janet Ryvlin and Denise Blanc leading the four-week “Exploring White Conditioning” course. Next up in 2023 will be Gabe Daley presenting on “The Four Dignities of Investigating Whiteness and Racism” in October/November. More information on these courses will be coming soon.

Racial Minority Meditation – Shambhala Gainesville

Shambhala Gainesville offers a Racial Minority Meditation (online / in-person hybrid) on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month. A welcoming and inclusive space, this meditation group is open to racial minorities regardless of religious background, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and socio-economic background to meditate and share experiences. For more information, please email [email protected]. Shambhala Gainesville also offers a White Awareness Book Study Group that meets once a month. For more information, email [email protected]. To learn more about the Shambhala Gainesville Centre please watch this short video!

Collective Liberation – Shambhala Chicago

Shambhala Chicago offers a Collective Liberation Online Discussion Group where participants gather—virtually—on the first Saturday of each month at 10:00 a.m. CST. Facilitated by Bea Bosco, Alice Dan, and Jean Marie Robins, their site states: 

“Our intention is to explore the sticky issues of race and other forms of self-deception that lock our Basic Goodness behind invisible layers of culture / habitual thinking.” 

To read more and register click here!

Sitting in Solidarity – Shambhala Seattle

Shambhala Seattle holds an online Sunday morning meditation: Sitting in Solidarity, for those who stand against racism. According to Rachel DeMotts: 

“The Solidarity Sit began in the wake of George Floyd’s murder and has since been used as a space to encourage reflection on our individual positionalities and responsibilities to act, especially in the context of a predominantly white dharma community.” 

The practice consists of guided shamatha and tonglen practice. For more information on Sitting in Solidarity and Seattle Shambhala, please click here. Along with Sitting in Solidarity, Shambhala Seattle provides a consistent and safe space for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color to meditate. The BIPOC Group meets online the first Sunday of every month from 1:00-3:00 p.m. PST. Read more here about the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Meditation Group.

Individual Liberation to Collective Liberation – A Resource Guide

While many actions are being taken at a local level, there are also efforts being made to provide accessible social engagement resources to all Centres and Groups within Shambhala. Members of the Shambhala community: Charlene Leung, Gabe Dayley, Joy Gutierrez, and Janet Ryvlin, through interviews with over 40 people in Shambhala, created the From Individual Liberation to Collective Liberation Resource Guide. This important guide is an incredibly rich resource for the community and our deepest thanks go out to the authors and the people they interviewed. Their incredible work will benefit many! Read the guide in its entirety here.

Sunday Gatherings – Shambhala Online Podcast

Shambhala Online is committed to regularly hosting Sunday Gatherings that are related to inclusion and diversity. You can access these through our Shambhala Sunday Gatherings Podcast. Previous topics have included:

Social Activism Funding in Shambhala

In 2021, the Shambhala Board put out a call for local Centers and Groups to submit grant applications for diversity and inclusivity initiatives. Projects that were funded included, but were not limited to: the Establishing the Path of Inclusivity Warriorship & Social Liberation project that led to the creation of the From Individual Liberation to Collective Liberation Resource Guide, as well as a grant for Examining Whiteness, a facilitator training for Shambhala teachers to facilitate a course that investigates whiteness and racism with the heart of warriorship. We invite you to read more about the details of the Shambhala Board grant initiatives here.

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If you would like your Centre or Group’s social action initiatives to be featured in the SGS Newsletter or on the Shambhala Times, please reach out to Jillian Johnson at [email protected]. We want to share the good work you are doing to create inclusive spaces for all.

 

Entries filed under Community Articles


My Turn in the Barrel: the Weekthun Experience near Houston, Texas

My Turn in the Barrel: the Weekthun Experience near Houston, Texas – HIGHLIGHT

#gallery-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */ Written for the Dot by Bob Williams In Texas we say, “It’s your turn in the barrel!” when you’re center stage and under fire. Why? Because ... continue
Posted March 16, 2009 by
Level One for People of Color

Level One for People of Color – HIGHLIGHT

By Ivette Guillermo, Elaine Yuen and Steve McGahee In January 2009, the Philadelphia Shambhala Center conducted a Shambhala Training Level One for people of color.  Some asked, Why do this?  Why separate, why make note of difference?  Isn’t Shambhala Training already unbiased and open to everyone? The reality ... continue
Posted March 12, 2009 by
Shambhala Day Aspiration at Ise, Japan

Shambhala Day Aspiration at Ise, Japan – HIGHLIGHT

As I walked up the large stone steps approaching Amaterasu’s main shrine, I wished that every Shambhalian could experience this place.  Mindlessly, I flashed a picture with my camera – before a guard sharply waved his hands as to say, “No pictures!” I quickly apologized and ... continue
Posted March 6, 2009 by
Journey to the Kagyu Monlam

Journey to the Kagyu Monlam – HIGHLIGHT

By Corey Kohn Bodhgaya is a dusty little one-horse town, replete with limbless beggars and tattered-looking street children, just as we had been told. And in the middle of this unlikely place is the Mahabodhi temple, commemorating the site where the Buddha attained enlightenment 2,500 years ago. ... continue
Posted March 3, 2009 by
Acharya Simon Luna and the Santiago Gong

Acharya Simon Luna and the Santiago Gong – HIGHLIGHT

This article was a collaborative effort of Magali Meneses, Clarke Warren, Veronica Guzman, Marvin Ross and Marc Matheson. The late Acharya Simon Luna, who passed away in 2007, had a connection to Naropa University and to the Shambhala community of Latin America. Clarke Warren, a Naropa ... continue
Posted March 2, 2009 by

Essays on the Shambhala Buddhist Chants

[caption id=”attachment_504″ align=”alignright” width=”150″ This document has drawn immensely appreciative feedback. The following excerpt from the Preface might help explain why: The Kootenay Shambhala Centre is in the town of Nelson, B.C., Canada. We have had the usual disagreements about whether it is appropriate to do ... continue
Posted February 27, 2009 by James Northcote
Shambhalacalli en Tepotzlan

Shambhalacalli en Tepotzlan

Escrito para The Dot. Traducido al español por Luz Rodríguez. Brus y Jean Westby viven la mayor parte del año en Bucerías (México), y la acharya Allyn Lyon les invitó hace poco a formar parte del equipo de un retiro de una semana en Shambhalacalli, en Tepotzlán, ... continue
Posted February 25, 2009 by Brus Westby
All and Everything

All and Everything

Thirty-five years ago at the age of twenty-five, I attended the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa’s Black Hat [or Vajra Crown] ceremony in San Francisco at the invitation of a dear friend. This same friend also gave me a copy of Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism, which I still ... continue
Posted February 20, 2009 by Larry Barnett
The Ngondro of Babyhood

The Ngondro of Babyhood

I conceived my son when I was deep into my ngondro practice. Although my aspiration to receive Rigden abhisheka in the coming months was derailed, I felt that I had received the ultimate blessing.  The ngondro for this abhisheka began after the transmission – through the ... continue
Posted February 20, 2009 by Rebekka_Henriksen
Great Eastern Sun Rises on the Cape of Good Hope

Great Eastern Sun Rises on the Cape of Good Hope

In 2004, I returned to my hometown in South Africa after 30 years away. I found a sparse and scattered dharma scene. In Cape Town, the only Tibetan Buddhist center was that of Rob Nairn, Akong Rinpoche’s senior South African student. A few months after I arrived, ... continue
Posted February 20, 2009 by Jennifer_Woodhull
Streetspace Gallery in Berkeley, California

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Two years ago the Berkeley Shambhala Center (BSC) opened the doors of Streetspace, a store-front, multi-purpose space located in downtown Berkeley, California. BSC has occupied the same second-floor space in a dzong-like building for over thirty years, while remaining virtually invisible to pedestrians and traffic. By ... continue
Posted February 18, 2009 by
Shambhala in Neverland

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For the past four years I have resided part time in mainland China, living in the concrete and tin roof barracks of the artist’s villages that ring the northeast section of Beijing, by the Fifth Ring Road near the airport. Personal voice and uncensored expression are ... continue
Posted February 15, 2009 by Ellen Pearlman
Sangha Co-housing opportunity in Northern California

Sangha Co-housing opportunity in Northern California

Written by Joel and Sarah Mandel Sarah and I are long-term Shambhala Buddhist practitioners.  As we approach retirement age, we’ve been thinking about how, where and with whom we would like to spend the rest of our lives. I’ll bet many of us are considering the same ... continue
Posted February 1, 2009 by Joel Mandel
Meditation in a Utah School

Meditation in a Utah School

Students are practicing meditation in the unlikeliest of places: a small public school in rural southeastern Utah, USA. Encouraged by a once-a-week meditation group, students have learned to relax, pay attention to their breath and decrease negative emotions. How it Began In 2005, my supervisor at the ... continue
Posted January 31, 2009 by tom
Taipei Hosts President Reoch During Asia Tour

Taipei Hosts President Reoch During Asia Tour

Written for the Dot The Taipei Shambhala Meditation Group happily hosted Shambhala President Richard Reoch for three days during his October 2008 tour of Asia. This followed Acharya Arawana Hayashi’s earlier February 2008 visit to Taipei which featured an inspiring program: “Shambhala and the Great Eastern Sun ... continue
Posted January 31, 2009 by Yeachin Tsai

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