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MeditationAcknowledging Our Privilege

Acknowledging Our Privilege

Privilege comes in many forms. Learn to work through the discomfort you might feel as you recognize it in yourself and others.

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Welcome to this meditation, an opportunity to explore, examine, and acknowledge your privilege. I invite you to find a position that feels aligned and comfortable for you and your body right now. Close or lower your eyes if it feels sufficiently safe to do so. Connect with the breath, taking a long, slow inhale through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. Fill up the back of your heart. Fill up your low back and fill your belly all with breath, feeling your body expand as you breathe in and contract as you breathe out. Continue this breathing deep and slow. I invite you to explore and breathe into the meaning of the word privilege. No matter your race, color, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, or the like, we all possess some form of privilege and thus power, especially those of us most aligned with the status quo. For us to be able to achieve social and racial justice, we must acknowledge and explore our privilege and power as well as ways we can best use our privileges to support those made most marginalized. A privilege is a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group. Folks have been assigned more power and access to power than others due to socially created hierarchies based on race, age, gender identity, ethnicity, ability and so on. In the words of Black Lives Matter activist Janaya Future Khan, privilege is not about what you've been through, it's about what you haven't had to go through. To get curious about the ways privilege operates, I invite you to join me in a guided imagery exercise. Bring into your mind's eye a grass field, filled with people of all races, abilities, gender identities, sizes, colors, financial backgrounds, and ages, a vastly diverse grouping of people. Envision everyone standing on a long line in the grass and 15 feet in front of you is a finish line. As I name a short list of forms of privilege, I want you to envision yourself moving one foot forward for every privilege that applies to you. If you are white, please envision yourself stepping forward. If you are a white-passing or light-skinned black indigenous or person of color, please envision yourself stepping forward. If you are a cis-gender, meaning you identify as the gender identity assigned to you at birth, please move forward. If you are straight, please move forward. If you are thin, please move forward. Taking a moment here to note where you may be on this line now, who is in front of you, who is behind you, bring them into your mind's eye and notice how it feels in your body to notice how far ahead or behind you may be at this time. What emotions arise in the body, allowing whatever may come up to simply be. Getting curious as to why you may feel the way you're feeling. Continuing the exercise now. If you are...


Duration10 min

About your teachers

  • A former Buddhist monk, Andy has guided people in meditation and mindfulness for 20 years. In his mission to make these practices accessible to all, he co-created the Headspace app in 2010.

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  • Eve is a mindfulness teacher, overseeing Headspace’s meditation curriculum. She is passionate about sharing meditation to help others feel less stressed and experience more compassion in their lives.

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  • As a meditation teacher, Dora encourages others to live, breathe, and be with the fullness of their experiences. She loves meditation’s power to create community and bring clarity to people’s minds.

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  • Kessonga has been an acupuncturists, therapist, and meditation teacher, working to bring mindfulness to the diverse populations of the world.

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  • Rosie Acosta has studied yoga and mindfulness for more than 20 years and taught for over a decade. Rosie’s mission is to help others overcome adversity and experience radical love.

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