Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Conversation recap for February 25

Colleen’s gave us her story.

Mona’s Life of Social Justice

Go back in time to influences – once severe beating from father and had to be taken out of the family.

Intersection of dysfunctional family and Irish Catholicism. Irish Catholicism is unique-being so tied up with Irish nationalism

Took LOVE from Catholicism. Ended up developing an incredible relationship with Frank (dad)—he told her things he hadn’t told anyone, ever. Violence in his life, becoming a father before grown, steeped in alcohol trying to cope.

Volunteered at Purdy—listening to the pain and the stories.

State Teen Health Forum—6 years ended up putting one on at Annie Wright which ended up getting them to change their Life Skills curriculum.

Came to Evergreen-Tacoma. Now a “recovering white person” as a result. Learned so much about white privilege. Used to think their was such a thing as reverse racism, that laws on the books are real. Honest dialogue with fellow students. Have a choice to retreat back into corner or take a leap of faith. Anyone engaged in social justice work will get their nose knocked off. Now working with Sekou Shabaka—Youth coming out of incarceration—tell their story using hip-hop, poetry, art, etc.

On TESC-President’s Diversity Fund committee

Present plan: Student of Color Conference for Tacoma Youth. March 18th afternoon tea to brainstorm 3PM Mona’s House.

Believe doing work of civil and human rights has to be connected to some sort of spiritual journey because it’s not head stuff it’s heart stuff.

Marti--a lot of us on this journey had issues in our childhood that makes us reflective and able to listen and to read people.

Ieisha-yes a lot of us go through trauma and that often results in wrath (not anger). Would like to know what it is that folks have done or process they’ve gone through to get rid of the wrath or use it in a different way.
Colleen—has channeled the wrath—into the kids she works with.
Mona—goes back to the Catholic thing—really believe in forgiveness and also cursed with eternal hopefulness. Believe in the good in balance of power. Refuse to live in the dark. Use what brings you joy—music, whatever fills your spirit, other wise vicarious trauma and opening wounds from past.
Tom—agrees—have to have joy to balance the rage and have a place/space to rejuvenate.
Eve—recognizing it is a good step—can use the rage and wrath in good ways.
Mona—writing is very powerful, ritualistic things, stones in water, dancing, hot bubbly baths with scented candles and wine and chocolate.
Colleen embrace past. Would be who am without having walked the path walked.
Julia—these life experiences are not always packaged pretty but always lessons.
Marla—have had to learn to allow self to experience joy.
Mary—all have had things to overcome. Good to realize you’re always a work in progress. Inspiring to hear how others have come through things
BJ—“Happiness is an inside job”
Crestina—life is continuing education.
Charhys—in summer I have no problems. In winter, feel vulnerable reminded of being homeless. Try to do meditation—let thoughts pass through.

Dexter—Had planned to be here last 2 weeks but daughter down with stomach flu. Will be here but perhaps not every Sunday, because of personal challenges. Watched 2 films yesterday—“Road to Terabithia” and “Truman Capote”. As we contemplate the challenges of doing good in the world, these two films may help us. One is about imagination, creativity and engagement--death and keeping memory in imagination. The other is about how experience of dealing with murder and death literally took TC’s life. He never wrote another book in 20 years until his death.Living with knowledge of mortality is useful. US culture tells you can do anything and thus you set out to do everything, including creating nirvana in your everyday lives when you really can only create nirvana in Terabithia.How do we expand the dynamic of what we do here? Start a conversation. In your church, in your organization, etc. about justice. How can we encourage ourselves? Think about our own mortality and the mortality of others, even the rich and powerful. No system will last forever. You have enough support from here to make a difference.What came out of this conversation today: we’ll do good and do well if we support each other, if we keep trying and if we acknowledge that life is a struggle and if we rejoice and rejuvenate and return to the scene of our trauma. A way to return can be making sure “this doesn’t happen to another person”. When you think about the experience of people who live within the limits of scarce material yet remain hopeful in contrast to many with more than enough who are unhappy, you should focus on the positives of life and allow yourself to be ”kissed by the sun.” I know I’m one who carries a “blues” mentality—somber persona. Please do not mistake that for I’m always unhappy. That’s not my experience. Work to function outside of your element because life will throw that at you.Social problems are dynamicSocial solutions are dynamicSocial subjects are dynamicReceive praise with care as you should be prepared for the experience of being assailed. Aristotle encouraged balance and moderation in all things, always a sense of balance even in the way we receive praise and blame.

Dalton—growing up in Trinibago—when it rains, people stop and stand under shelter because rain doesn’t last very long. Learned to kiss the rain here in the NW. Have to face your demons. Once you have you realize they are not really the demons they thought they were.
Tom—I revel in where I am. Always in awe of what the natural world has to offer.
Dalton-grandmother’s statement—“there goes the moon—God bless my eyesight”

Charhys and Keith B.took us out with—Life is Short, Life is Long—Life is Right, Life is Wrong. A beautiful story a very sad song, Until it gets over it just keeps going on.


April 21st Ebony Fashion Fair

Pam Bridges’ daughter J’Nai More Music at the Moore. Friday night March 2nd 7:30pm Whne buy tickets from Pam, J’Nai gets some proceeds

Wed. 12 noon Angela Davis at TCC ***FREE***

Wed. evening 5:30-8 TCRP at History Museum. ***FREE***

1st and 3rd Sat. 2012 hosts open mic 7:30-12, not just poetry not just music, but story telling or readings.

Single Payer Health Care Bill-Susan is collecting postcards to legislators from 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 31 dists.

Marti—anyone with a child or grandchild or other child they care about—who’s never had a horse experience and wants to, please ask.

Nordstrom has scholarships for high schoolers

Kristy and Steve playing on March 9th at place called Mocha Moon in Steilacoom on S. Tac. Way