Wow. It's been an incredible week. Heard Angela Davis & Grace Lee Boggs speak on revolution last weekend at the Empowering Women Of Color Conference, and now spent International Women's Day with Alice Walker. She led a sit at the East Bay Meditation Center for the POC sit evening, and also read new poems on revolution. Wow. In my spiritual tradition, the Orisha tradition from West Africa, this year belongs to Oya, who is the Warrior Woman Of The Winds Of Change; the principle of Transformation. Sitting with all of these elder woman warriors who speak of personal and social transformation... has been an incredible, blessed gift. Maferefun Oya.
And Alice Walker... her presence is so deeply peaceful and wise. Much less to hear her poetry after meditating... the already profound words permeate your consciousness on a whole other level. I'm so grateful. She will be sitting for 5 more Thursdays at the East Bay Meditation Center POC sit night.
and now, some gems. enjoy.
Alice Walker On Wanting The Self & Meditation: "There is such a lot to be said about learning to want yourself. no matter who does or does not want us, or me or you, want yourself. if you want yourself, you are already winning, because you know what is worth having. and want your true self, not your phony self. the phony self doesn't really exist, its just a figment of somebody's...humor. so want yourself as you are- and that's why meditation is so divine... because you get to sit there, with you. and finally you have to agree... it's not that bad."
Alice Walker On Ancestors: "All of us in this room, if you go back far enough you will come across somebody who stood up when everybody else was saying sit down, shut up and don't move. You had an ancestor that said, I will stand thank you. I will stand."
Alice Walker on Teaching Youth Meditation & Ancestors: "I think that sitting is basic to liberation. and i truly believe that if you sit with sufficient patience, humility, and openness that your ancestors will show up. that has been my experience....if you teach them how to meditate, they will then lead themselves, the inner spirit will attract the ancestral forces that they need to be guided by....that has been my experience... some of the best times of my life... its not like a search, its just like an openness, like you are preparing for a guest. You are preparing for an ancestor. You are preparing for wisdom. and your job is to hold your seat. and some of it can be very scary, but you just hold your seat."
Alice Walker on Joy: "What brings me joy? Everything. Everything but the bad things. I'm naturally joyful. and it took decades of depression for me to realize it."
Alice Walker on Womanism: "You notice how this word has 'man' right in the middle of it. That is one reason i like it. He is there, front and center. But he is surrounded."
The crowd laughed raucously for the last one, and others too :) and duly noted! hmmmm... womanism does comprise of feminisms from communities of color, maybe i should change my blog to wo.men.ist....
Happy International Women's Day! And thank you Alice Walker for one of the most profound ones yet. <3