New to the web is Buddhists for Racial Justice, an “online home for a multi-racial, cross-tradition response to racism on the part of Buddhist Teachers, Monastics, Priests, Leaders, Ministers, Practitioners, and Clergy” which grew out of the recent U.S.-Buddhist leaders conference at the White House.
In addition to hosting a growing range of resources, the site includes an open letter that takes as its starting point the recent mass shooting in Charleston, SC, and calls “on teachers and leaders of Buddhist communities to respond definitively by connecting spiritual intentions of non-harm with meaningful and tangible action, including: turn towards the collective suffering of race/hate violence and white dominance that our society is experiencing, rather than ignore it.” The letter goes on to say:
We believe it is especially important that as Buddhist teachers and leaders, we encourage the white members of our community to continue to awaken to the history and dynamics of white privilege and the impact of unconscious collective racial bias. In a parallel way, it is essential that people of color continue to investigate their own unconscious patterning that perpetuates the suffering of racism. As support for these processes, and more broadly for activism dedicated to racial justice, we are offering two versions of a “Call to Engage.”
To view and sign the open letter, click here. You’ll also find the “Calls to Engage” on the site — one, online now is for white members of the Buddhist community, and the second, for members of color, is forthcoming; to be notified of its availability, sign up here.