A Message of Love and Solidarity
We draw strength from our diversity.
iRest Institute believes in our common humanity. We believe all people deserve respect and the opportunity for their voices to be heard and validated. While we do not condone violence, brutality, or unjust actions, we respect that change—especially cultural change—is never the result of comfortable or easy conversations. It only emerges when we are brave and vulnerable enough to confront hatred, inequality, and injustice with full attention and forward-thinking actions.
This unequivocal truth guides us as we listen and bear witness. As iRest practitioners, we look inside to welcome our helplessness, discomfort, anger, and grief. By meeting ourselves and our emotions just as they are, we come to right actions that meet this important moment. Each of us will discover a unique call to action. May we use our iRest practices to correct injustice with skill and compassion. May we create a refuge for unheard voices everywhere.
We must keep working for better ways. We must keep fighting for justice, income, healthcare and education reform, and for all things that make violence less likely. We must work together towards all people having equity and justice until the pain that is deeply entrenched in our souls is fully healed.
Many people feel anxious, afraid, disenfranchised, and disempowered. At iRest Institute our goal has been and always will be to create programs that empower us all to feel connected, to inquire deeply within ourselves and the world around us, and to build interactions that are inclusive of everyone, drawing strength from our diversity. Together we can achieve what at times seems unachievable.
Together we can achieve what at times seems unachievable.
First, we must foster and communicate mutual respect, so that all who are hurting know they are not alone. It’s important to connect with one another, so that we feel nourished within our shared humanity. The ideas and solutions that arise from these bonds will shape a brighter future.
We cannot return to the old normal. The old normal gives no sense of comfort when all around us is on fire. We must not avert our eyes from the blaze, but instead bear witness to the wounds, pain, and grief, for this is where the light enters for true healing to take place. As Martin Luther King, Jr. so rightly said, “Our survival depends on our ability to stay awake, to remain vigilant, and face the challenge of change." With every breath we take we must commit to creating a more just world for everyone.
Let our helplessness and anger transform into pain. Let our pain reveal the sadness and grief that lies beneath. Let our grief fuel positive action that turns the tide against injustice so that all feel seen, heard, and connected with a sense of belonging in our shared humanity.
In love and solidarity,
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Dale Ann Gray
While I appreciate the title, the content disturbs me. Under the heading of “Black Lives Matter” the words “black,” “race” and “people of color” never occur. The message seems to be “All Lives Matter,” a fraught sentiment in the least.
“All” will only become visible if we consciously, with intention, heart-felt calling and all our being, see black bodies.
Inclusive generalities rarely are.
They de-focus the crux.
“God has a preferential option for the poor”, a tenet of Liberation Theology, today becomes “God has a preferential option for black bodies” ... spotlighting them until seen, recognized, and the pervasive systems that denigrate them are no more.
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