Calling out White privilege in personal development and spirituality

By December 22, 2013May 19th, 2015Blog

Boom!  Such a great post here.  Read it, do.

It calls out the positive thinking mantra that intones that life is meant to be easy, and if it’s not, stay away from me with your negativity, man.  Sometimes life is easy, for some.  For many, not very often.  Yoga and reflection practices can help: to be less attached to how things are, to build strength and flexibility and resilience, on all levels.  Still, things happen.

Particularly, it must be said, very real disadvantage exists which the positive thinking police do not acknowledge.  You know, it’s called racism, sexism, homophobia, classism. Entrenched poverty and poor health.

Of course, optimism can be useful and good.  Hope has it’s place.  And realising any privilege you may have and being considerate of others is, surely, an essential nugget of any insight, spiritual reflection, or practice.  It’s called being a decent human.

Being self-centred isn’t enlightened.  It’s actually very predictable in our individualist times.   Being self-centred to the extent that you don’t realise the way you push your privilege ahead of you as you move through the world, and then teach this to others as a ‘developed’ way to be: that’s a big no.

As a local reminded me (of our own idea!) at the markets today, “just watch what dogs do”.  Happy dogs are affectionate.   They hang out.  Sure, they may be intent on food and soaking up individual pleasures.  But everyone knows when one dog is being a bully.

As someone else said at the markets today, “but where does the rubber (in the yoga mats) come from?”.  A developed or spiritual path without considering others is a fraud.  It could be being aware of those around you in class, or getting more precise about researching the ethics of manufacturing (which is daunting, but important).

On that, I am going to put some more ‘energy’ into researching our supply chains.  Stay tuned.

Leave a Reply