In our last issue, we promised that we would present additional ways we are fielding the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically using it as a prompt from nature to bring about a more compassionate world. That will have to wait.
In the accelerating pace of events since that issue came out on May 28, Covid-19 deaths in the U.S. exceeded 100,000 and had jumped to 116,000 by today. Everyone with a TV, smartphone, or computer watched the murdering of George Floyd. Peaceful protests throughout the nation about police brutality, demanding racial justice, and dismantling the very systems that lead to these injustices turned violent and captured the attention of the country and the world.
They then turned peaceful again and spread to many other countries. “Going viral,” “I can’t breathe,” and “taking a knee” each took on, in a sudden turn of irony, two very different meanings. Dialogue at many levels of society unfolded – some starting strained and remaining strained; others becoming more hopeful.
All this has led to considerable soul-searching for us personally and in our work. We are a healing organization. As the racism that is rooted in the foundations of our nation is being once again called out as a chronic social and economic disease, we have partnered with other healing organizations in producing an open letter that brings a healer’s perspective to systematic racism.
We stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, the BIPOC Project, and our sister healing organizations such as the Shift Network, in their formal statement. In terms of our own organizational response, our purpose statement, “Raising the vibration of the planet, one person at a time” means every race, color, and culture. This in itself is a powerful counter to the energetics of racism.
A lot to think about there, but the more you think about it, the more you recognize that bringing balance and harmony to your own energies radiates into the community in invisible ways as well as tangible behaviors. It is not just about monitoring your own personal energies. It is also about tangible behaviors, and the “open letter” and the Shift statement both outline concrete actions. We are also taking new steps to educate our staff about diversity and related issues.
In terms of our own personal soul-searching, the concept that is the most difficult, actually abhorrent to embrace, is that WE benefit from racism. Peggy McIntosh begins her eye-opening essay, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack with: "I was taught to see racism only in individual acts of meanness, not in invisible systems conferring dominance on my group."
We of course have taken stands against injustice throughout our lives and have witnessed countless ironies. David’s small, highly-rated college had a black Student Body President in 1963 who couldn’t get a haircut in the barber shop that was four blocks from the campus. Donna grew up from age 11 onward in a small easy-going town that had only one black family (much more on this below).
What makes the idea of White Privilege so tempting to try to forget for those of us who benefit from it? It is that if you follow it to its logical implications, you have to be willing to help change the social conditions that confer that privilege upon you.
Few people are eager to give up wealth or power that in their minds they have legitimately earned or inherited. But that’s the stakes in the discussions that are underway.
In the following piece, Donna shares one of her most painful stories involving race relations, one she would rather not be associated with, but one that is highly pertinent on the soul-searching side. From there we return to the above concept of “Raising the vibration of the planet, one person at a time.”
There are a thousand ways to respond to the world’s problems. We are an energy healing organization, and working with personal and collective vibrations is our way. It’s what we do. Following Donna’s story, the extraordinarily important energy system called the “Radiant Circuits” will be the focus of the remainder of the e-letter. It is one of the most powerful tools we have to offer for raising your own vibration!
Donna and David
“Mama and Daddy Weren’t Racist”
My Daddy was born in Tennessee; my Mama in North Carolina. They met in a library in Virginia in 1938, fell in love, and married. They moved to California in 1940. I was born in 1943.
Every summer starting in 1949, they would pack me, my older sister, and my younger brother into our old Chrysler sedan and return to the South to visit our relatives, hauling the teardrop trailer Daddy had built for us to all sleep in every night.
They would point out to us the obvious and not so obvious signs of discrimination and racism, educating us about how blacks were treated unfairly and how lucky we were to live in California “where these things don’t happen.” We had never seen this kind of blatant prejudice in California, and it was difficult for us to comprehend.
I remember how excited we all were about Rosa Parks and how we felt that change was going to happen very soon. The intolerance toward others was one of the reasons my parents left the South.
When I was 11, we moved from one of the cities surrounding Los Angeles to Ramona, a small mountain town outside of San Diego. In my freshman year in high school, I was excited to learn about the Sadie Hawkins Day Dance. It was the one time in the year that girls got to invite boys.
I was 14, and I knew I was going to ask Bill Bowers. He was nice, cute, and I liked him so much. Bill had been raised in our little town of Ramona all his life – everyone knew him. I remember photos of some of our classmates with him as infants in the playpen.
So I asked Bill to the dance! Bill said yes! I was excited. We were both happy and excited.
But a few days after inviting Bill, Mama came out to talk to me. I remember, I was sitting in my favorite tree in our front yard. She seemed very serious and anxious. Mama never had trouble talking to me. But she did this day. She tried to tell me that what she was about to say to me was not what she and Daddy felt.
They were scared that if I went with Bill to the dance, we would be victims of repercussions. Up until that moment, I hadn’t realized that I had done something unusual – inviting the only black boy in town to the dance.
It was an awful talk for so many reasons. I was being forced to break my date with Bill. But beyond that – how could my parents, who were champions of equality – possibly be saying this to me?
I was shocked, hurt, and disoriented. I couldn’t even grasp what Mama was trying to explain to me. I wasn’t raised with these ideas. I knew what they had seen growing up in the South. But this was California! Why would anyone be upset? Why weren’t my parents standing up for what was right? I just didn’t get it. Everything was wrong with this picture.
I felt crazed and emotional in the days before the dance, but I saw no choice. I was trapped and finally mustered my courage to break my date with Bill. I cried and cried. I basically told Bill a lie . . . that my parents wouldn’t let me go to the dance. But, by the look on Bill’s face, he knew.
I was traumatized. Bill was heartbroken and traumatized, too. He had never dated. And he never had a date throughout all of high school.
Even though Bill was well-liked by everyone in our class, he refused to graduate with us. As we were waiting to walk into the auditorium to the graduation march, we found a note Bill had written to all of us that said high school was “the loneliest years of my life.” And then he was gone. We were shocked. We were hit with a thud of understanding about the lonely experience of this boy most of us had known since he was born.
As the years have gone on, I have grappled with how our “tolerant” community could have so frightened my parents who, from everything I could see, were actively anti-racist, into committing such a racist act. I came to realize that they were lost, not knowing what to do and where to stand, not knowing how to be good parents, doubting themselves. I know that Mama and Daddy were deeply sorry for having hurt both me and Bill, but the Sadie Hawkins dance was never spoken of again. Mama and Daddy were ashamed. I still hurt for them. I still hurt for Bill.
Why am I telling this story? And why now? It would be so much more comfortable in this time of racial tension to be placing myself on the side of the good guys. To be telling you about how I got involved in the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s. But as we, as a culture, are putting a spotlight on the social structures that limit equal opportunity and promote white privilege, we can of course be angry at blatant acts of police violence or a thousand other injustices that make it onto the news. Looking inside is harder.
As I’ve been looking inside, I’ve seen opportunities I’ve enjoyed that I might not have had were I of a different skin color. But the Bill Bowers story is the most immediate and poignant for me.
As you go back into your past, particularly if you are endowed with privilege, what stands out? When did you stay silent when you might have spoken up? What other actions might you have taken?
This isn’t about showering yourself in guilt or shame. It is about scanning your personal experiences. It is about bringing your shadow side into the light of self-reflection. It is about discovering your direct knowledge of the often invisible ways the culture is structured. It is about seeing how it conveys advantage to some at the expense of others. From there, you can enter conversations about these issues with greater authenticity.
And isn’t that what is so needed now? Authenticity, conversation, and connection. Dr. Martin Luther King’s observation is as true today as it was 60 years ago when he said: “If you fail to act now, history will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.”
The remainder of the e-letter is dedicated to the Radiant Circuits, one of the most powerful energy systems for “raising the vibration” in your own body, a step toward raising the vibration of the planet:
28-Day Joy Challenge
Increase Your Joy, Increase Your Vibration
Installment 6 of the Radiant Circuit Series!
Explore the Radiant Circuits In This 8-Part Newsletter Series
The Penetrating Flow Circuit
By Donna Eden
JOY ∞ ECSTASY ∞ MYSTICAL EXPERIENCES
The Penetrating Flow Circuit is the energy of deep joy, profound healing, and ecstasy. It carries information to all the energy systems at their depths.
According to both ancient Chinese and Japanese medicine, the Penetrating Flow Circuit carries the energies of the ancestors in the embryo and sets the strength of the person's basic energetic constitution.
Mystical experiences are moments of receiving the penetrating energies of the universe. You are put in touch with the holy and the meaningful, entering a deep and natural sense of life’s purpose, and are lifted beyond workaday existence.
Bring More Radiance Into Your Life With the Penetrating Flow Exercise!
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