I contemplate many questions. Question to which there are no right or wrong answers. Questions that when asked in a safe, sacred space can create beautiful, healing discussions. Warning! This post may trigger some people. There are no right/wrong answers but I do give you a lot of questions to sit with.

 

Is creating division and separation really necessary to do personal, family, ancestral or community healing?

Last fall I read a book My Grandmother’s Hands by Resmaa Menakem about racialized trauma.  While his book is meant to be read over a period of time so people can work through all the exercises he provides, I read the book in about three days. Why?

My learning style, especially with books full of exercises or workbook pages is to read it through then start over. Also, I was hosting a webinar and felt this book would be important to mention. Reading it first to understand what it was about was important.

In this book, to achieve healing and remove white supremacy and racism from the country (his book is focused on America), we must separate and divide to do our work. White bodied people (Resmaa’s words) should do their work. Black/Brown bodied people (his words) should do theirs. Blue bodied people (his words – police) should do their work. It appears only in some cases can we come together to discuss.

Do you agree with this? I have several thoughts/answers to this question. What you feel is up to you. I am presenting different sides of the question to consider.

 

Yes I agree

When I first read the book and then went back through it, I could see why he broke people into groups. Just as it is true that a woman who has never gone through IVF or lost a baby, cannot fully understand what that is like. Or someone who has or had cancer – those who have not cannot fully understand all the mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional things that come up. The same for those who are in white, brown/black or blue bodies. If in this life we are in one particular body with a specific lineage (we won’t even get into past lives) then we cannot fully understand someone else’s life and history. In some ways it makes sense that you would divide and work in groups of people like you with similar stories.

In division there can be created a safe space to discuss what comes up for a specific group – again whether you are talking about racism, cancer, loss, grief, etc.

 

No I do not agree

This is where I started asking questions on the other side. Earlier in 2020 I watched  a webinar Resmaa participated in, in which he talked about racialized trauma and his book concepts. Reading a book is one thing – if you read energy you pick up a certain energy that way. When you see someone teach, speak, online or in person, you have access to another level of energy.

The longer he spoke, the more the energies of anger, frustration, irritation rose. That may not have been apparent to all people watching but for me, being sensitive to energy, it really was. No longer did I feel all good things about his concepts.

I also began to wonder as a facilitator or speaker, should we be grounding and providing the information in a calmer manner, especially if the topic is triggering? Or is there a place for the anger to rise? If it does, will that turn people off from your message?

Recently in speaking with others about the concepts in my ancestral lineage healing group, most people, including those of color, were put off and angry that such a book could be written. After all, aren’t we trying to come together rather than separate?

After explaining the purpose behind it, most people in the conversation could see that perspective. They may not have agreed with it but could understand it. The entire conversation we had, which lasted about a half an hour was beautiful. Peaceful. Healing. Considering we had people in the group of color, white bodied people and at least one whose lineage contained KKK members, most people would think it would erupt into a violent abusive conversation.

It did not. It was healing and beautiful.

There is a part of me that feels the more we divide and encourage division and separation to do our work, the more of that we will see in the world. Where you put your attention and energy is what you create more of – whether you want it or not. 

So if we continue to separate – are we creating more of that?

 

why do we have to divide and separate?

This brings me back to my original question. Why do we have to divide and separate and group people? This world and our country is so full of division. Media and social media have an agenda to continue promoting division, racism, inequality so those who choose to, continue to hate, be abusive, divide, murder, and assault.

More people are waking up to this agenda. More people are doing their personal inner work to heal themselves, their patterns, their lineage, so issues like this will maybe some day cease to exist.

So today I sit on the fence, one leg on each side, contemplating if division is the best way to heal. I can see both sides of the issue and for some people one way works where the other doesn’t.  There is no one right way to heal or do your inner work, no matter what the “experts” and “gurus”  and authors tell you.

 

What do you think?

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4 thoughts on “Is Division Necessary in Family, Ancestors & Community Healing?

  1. Insightful as always 🙂

    Division pro – people feel more comfortable in their own groups.

    Division con – when you allow separation each group becomes so insular the other groups become the enemy

    In our society today it is the division con you see. Unfortunately, there are politicians and media that encourage the division because of their agenda.

    I personal think their could be a happy medium. You could be comfortable in your own groups without disparaging other groups and all groups could work together for the common good.

  2. Wrote this after reading this and pondering…

    Encounter of the Mind
    “Excuse me.
    Oh, didn’t mean to frighten you.
    Will you kneel and confess your white privilege?”
    I looked at the speaker, calm, young, earnest.
    I stood.
    “I claim no supremacy.
    I come from a poor, broken home
    Marred by alcoholism, physical abuse,
    Emotional abuse, jealousies,
    Mental illnesses.
    My ancestors, harassed, beaten,
    Burned out of their homes,
    Raped and killed,
    Fled the United States.
    Nonetheless, I educated myself, married,
    Love my children and grandchildren,
    Find meaning.
    No, I will not kneel.
    I want to shake your hand
    As equals.”

    On the news I watched the short video of a nurse asked to kneel before a young man and confess her privilege. I am not sure why she was on duty, perhaps to tend to those wounded that night, perhaps in a delivery ward, perhaps in an ICU. She wore scrubs. The young man did not sound threatening, but the milieu of the city was threatening, so she knelt and confessed, stressed out. I wondered how the scene might have played out if they were able to talk and listen. Statistics bear out that her family probably never owned slaves two hundred years ago, considering the immigration data over the years. In all probability her family had born their generations of trials. So, I wrote this alternate encounter. How did it end? That will be an encounter in your mind.

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