White Awareness Enquiry
with Melanie Klein
October 21 / 6:30 PM - November 18 / 8:00 PM
For five consecutive weeks, members of the extended community are invited to explore their experience of being white in racially-complex America. This exploration is based on the Shambhala view of basic goodness and developed in partnership with UNtraining, a respected approach for bringing self-awareness to white conditioning, bias, and privilege.
Through guided contemplation led by the facilitator, we will bring to mind how we’ve encountered racial difference and division in the course of our lives, and share these encounters with one another. By making our personal experiences visible, and holding them gently and bravely with others, previously unseen biases can be freshly considered and become part of our journey to wholeness and genuine respect for others.
Melanie Klein, BSC’s Executive Director, completed the facilitator training earlier in the year and will lead the class. In addition to contemplation and discussion, Melanie also offers to host the study of two recently published books: Stoney, The Road, by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Pioneers! By David McCullough. The former is an unflinching look at the disturbing Jim Crow period that followed the Civil War. The latter presents the history of early American leaders who settled the Ohio Valley a hundred years before. While Pioneers! celebrates the white settlers’ vision and virtue, it also includes the dark history of the Native Americans at that time and the continuation of violent purges against them. Together these two beautifully written and haunting books stimulate a range of feeling about white/anglo culture and goes beyond simplified formulas of blame and shame.
The guided contemplation will take place in the first half of each class. Should you wish to purchase the books, please join the second half of class where we’ll read and discuss them over the course of the five weeks.
You can come for one class, all five, or any number in between!