Best Self Magazine

Mindfulness and Race: Bearing Witness to Our Racial Distress

Racial distress, racism, Mindfulness and Race by Ruth King, photograph of birds by Adrian Kirkegaard

Photograph by Adrian Kirkegaard

Mindfulness doesn’t erase the reality of racial distress; however, it allows us to explore the question of whether we are contributing to suffering or to freedom

If we turn our attention inward, we often feel the soreness, tenderness, and vulnerability from the habitual ways we have met the rough edges of racial distress, and it is easy to feel overwhelmed. Although these feelings may be difficult to metabolize, it is possible to do so. Our thoughts and feelings are not permanent states; rather, they are crucial experiences to attend to, and it begins with understanding our minds. This is the role of mindfulness meditation.

Mindfulness has its roots in the 2,600-year-old tradition of Buddhism.

The practice of mindfulness meditation supports us in experiencing more mental ease and harmony. It does not help us get rid of racial ignorance or ill will,

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