With compassion and spirit, WisdomWay Institute stands in solidarity with Black communities
Our hearts have been heavy upon witnessing, along with the world, more senseless deaths in our communities. We not only mourn Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd but countless others whose lives have been lost to pervasive systemic violence; we mourn a culture that oftentimes loses sight of its humanity to protect corruption with the same intensity we witness in the violence perpetrated.
Reducing racial disparities and uplifting trauma-informed healthcare practices, sharing practices that make awareness of bias and willingness to undo racism, are some of the foundations of our work. We can’t teach foundations of compassion, safety, and shared decision-making without insights into this systemic conditioning we’ve had about which bodies have value and which bodies within this conditioning are disregarded, devalued, and targets of violence.
Now more than ever we see the importance of holding space for Black lives. Not because they matter more than others, but because they are treated as if disposable. When an individual has to question the value of their life, and that life is constantly at risk simply by doing normal activities, uprisings and unrest are understandable consequences. The pandemic, on top of a history of racial oppression, has collided, and it exposes the ongoing trauma that Black individuals experience every day.
Our practices of mindfulness in caregiving and healthcare invite us to not only cultivate healing alliances but to also cultivate the courage and confidence to bear witness to suffering without turning away, without shutting down. Peace and healing are intertwined with sitting with what is uncomfortable and fearlessly acknowledging the depth of suffering, both within us and in others. Meditation is not a way of glossing over the pain of the world, but finding a way to get more intimate with it and our reactions so that we might choose the compassionate, wakeful way to respond.
WisdomWay commits to acknowledging and endeavoring to address the interconnectedness of racial disparity and trauma. We will continue to work with Black communities and people of color to disrupt racism in our country while elevating healing and justice through mindful, transformative, and Healing informed practices. To be silent is to be complicit; we must work together to continue asking the tough questions and listening to solutions that may be difficult for those in power or positions of privilege to accept. We have a platform and a duty to Black families, employees, and community partners to speak up and out.
We will be donating 20% of all revenues from our Refuge & Resilience Course through August 1st to support the Black Lives Matter Global Network Foundation. We also encourage that folks support the following teachers who so generously teach awareness and anti-racism, and/or are providing healing for Black persons seeking refuge:
Thanks to our friends at the Childbirth Collective for the following reading and podcast lists:
Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad
I Don’t Want Your Love and Light by Rachel Cargle
White Fragility by Robin Diangelo
Anything by bell hooks
How to be an Anti-Racist by Ibram X. Kendi
NPR’s Code Switch
As we continue to reach out and connect with a number of community leaders and organizations that uphold our values, we commit to identifying and exploring ways to take a stand and create change, both locally and nationally. We hope you’ll join us.
The Team at WisdomWay Institute
Karen Laing is a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Teacher with experience in trauma and caregiving. She's spent the last 25 years supporting families through major life transitions such as birth and postpartum care.
She founded Birthways over 20 years ago to support expectant families and provide training and support for birthworkers. She created WisdomWay as a means to continue supporting all caregivers with mindfulness-based training and certifications. She speaks nationwide on mindfulness, parenting, caregiving, and mental health.