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MeditationLeaning Into Liberty

Leaning Into Liberty

Recognizing our own privilege isn’t something to be ashamed of. It can help us exercise compassion and better support those who don’t have the same power.

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This is an invitation for us all to lean into liberty which first requires owning our roles as oppressed oppressors. First, I invite you to find a position that feels aligned and comfortable for you and your body right now. You may close or lower eyes if it feels sufficiently safe to do so. And then take a moment to simply be here now breathing in and out in this body in this moment. Being an oppressed oppressor means we exist at the in-between. We may experience oppression as a result of our race, color, ethnicity gender identity, sexual orientation, age, ability, size or the like. That oppression is absolutely real and valid and trying. That oppression deserves space and time and healing. And at the same time we are likely also oppressors in some way, shape or form depending on what powers or privileges we may possess and the intersection of those powers and privileges. For example, a queer white woman is oppressed by patriarchy because she is a woman and she is oppressed by heteronormativity because she is queer but she also oppresses black indigenous and folks of color by virtue of being white and thus perpetuating white supremacy. Take a moment to breathe into this awareness, to allow space for this to land in your heart and in your body noticing where you may find discomfort or confusion arising. Allowing space to be both and to lean into the awakening that many of us exist at some intersection of both being harmed and causing harm. And that no two experiences are alike. Notice where you feel this in your body. What sensations arise? Take a moment now to identify and name your bodily experience in this moment. And whenever discomfort arises, simply return to the breath. Tuning into how this feels in your body noticing any tension in the jaw, rise in the shoulders tightness in the chest, breathing into that discomfort taking a long slow inhale for four, three, two, one and exhaling what no longer serves for four, three, two, one. Repeating as many times as you need. Our healing is our liberation creating opportunities for all folks to heal especially those who have been most oppressed such as queer and trans black and indigenous women, femmes and non-binary folks. This is how we cultivate collective freedom. Notice what the word liberation invokes for you in this moment. Perhaps a softening in the belly, relaxing of the brow, sense of peace in the chest. Allow yourself to be with what arises there for you. When you feel complete, take a moment to bow in deep honor of the South Asian ancestors who created and cultivated the practice of meditation so that we can partake in it together today. Bowing in deep gratitude for joining me in this practice, Asha....


Duration5 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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