What it Means to be a Trauma Culture Activist
Indian students of Saint Joseph Degree college participate in an anti-rape protest in Hyderabad
From the front page:
I started to write a bigger post about this last night but got a little overwhelmed by the broadness of the topic for me.
So today I am going to share some more limited thoughts about this instead.
The Beginnings of What it Means to be a Trauma Culture Activist.
For me the core issue here is a redefinition of both inner/spiritual work and social/environmental activism.
A redefinition which acknowledges and respects inner work and social/environmental activism as each necessary aspects of healing from the effects of trauma culture. Each as aspects of dismantling the power structures that perpetuate the abuses of trauma culture. Each as aspects of creating a culture of radical embodiment, in place of that legacy.
In that way there is a shift in the conversation away from “what more can you do?” – a very trauma culture based question which for me and many others, inevitably leads to a feeling of “never enough”, to a different question, a different conversation.
Instead the conversation becomes about how do we each become all of who we are?
And how do we do that, with a trust, that in this healing and empowerment, there is the greatest possibility for change on all levels. How do we be in that process, in the best way possible and then support each other to be in relationship in the world from that place?
As part of that, how do we create communities of healing and activism that hold space for all these levels of practice and change?
Communities, that as adrienne maree brown says, value the “depth of relationship” over the quantity of relationships. Communities and organizations rooted in an understanding of trauma culture which in turn hold a radical vision of healing, of embodiment and of social and environmental justice.
In this way we get under some of the conflicts of traditional thinking about these topics which even in the alternative world are still all too often rooted in trauma culture thinking.
And instead live with seemingly divergent needs, as part of a greater whole.
In this way our containers, our structures are themselves reflective of an embodied understanding of consciousness which is naturally integrative and capable of holding divergent needs side by side, instead of seeing them as conflictual dichotomies.
And when I say structures, I am not just referring to organizational or community structures.
I am referring also to the way we hold space and be in relationship in general.
For example in regards to conversation, can we learn to listen to ourselves in a whole different way – so that we can actually then also hear others. And hence be in real dialogue, as opposed to the endless dramas and fights that are the inevitable result of conversation that is not rooted in a deeper understanding of self and consciousness.
Real dialogue of any kind is rooted in first knowing oneself.
In that way all conversation becomes a part of building an embodied consent culture. Part of knowing who we are ourselves on an intimate level. Knowing for example what conversations we even want to be in.
Knowing how to set boundaries when needed.
Knowing how to have real conversation be a foundational aspect of being in intimate relationship with those that we share and touch with words. Language that then reflects actual experience on the deepest level that we know.
In this way, it is not dramatic to say that we could honor real conversation as a potentially sacred act.
In this way we can feel into what it means for those of us that are called to find voice in a broader way – to feel into how we bring that level of intention to having our voices and the voices of those that have been oppressed by trauma culture, begin to be heard in a real and meaningful way in the world.
How would those conversations then deepen and change on an inner/earth/spiritual level, on a relationship level and on a broader social level?
Can a core part of being a trauma culture and embodiment activist be about living with and living out these questions?
Bringing both spaciousness and passion to all that we do.
More to come….
With respect and in solidarity,
From the unceded, occupied land of the Abenaki People
NEW CLASS: From Trauma Culture to Embodied Consciousness
Bringing Together Inner Practice and Social Change
Please join me for this 3 month exploration of learning to hold space within ourselves and for each other. We will learn about and practice what it means to hold space, in the context of an understanding of trauma culture and an embodied return to an experience of love and grace. Both within our inner practice and in our engagement to the broader world of community and social justice…