An online immersion cultivating an intentional shift from racial innocence and distress to racial literacy and harmony within community.
Exploring Tender Territory:
- How did I come to see what I see, do what I do, fear what I fear, think what I think about race and racism?
- What are my distinct racial experiences? What's it like coming out of hiding? And what experiences do I share with others of my racial affinity group?
- How does my racial conditioning and reactivity help or hinder what I most care about?
- What impact does my honesty and vulnerability about race have on others? How am I impacted when others share their experiences?
- How much care and tenderness can I tolerate from members of my own race as we explore race and racism?
- What role do I play in the persistent injury and chronic ignorance of race and racism?
- What seeds are my thoughts and actions planting?
The RA-GDP offers self-formed racial affinity groups a 12-month blueprint to engage two areas crucial for racial healing:
- Investigating our racial conditioning and kinship with members of our own race through heart-centered inquiry, and;
- Attending to how we create beloved community and heal moral injury while progressing through three predictable stages of group life.
This powerful duo creates an embodied learning laboratory for ripening racial literacy, stability, and affinity.
Through monthly narrative practices, we are bringing to light our buried uneasiness, our deceptive discomfort, and our unadmitted despair. We are leaning toward what is unfamiliar and inspecting more closely what is habitual and defended, as well as what is worthy of celebration. We are recognizing the stories we have been told and the stories we tell ourselves. We are seeing more clearly our role in racial harming and healing.
Talking about race is edgy! When sharing racial experiences, we may feel exposed and unskilled as we reveal the anger, shame, and fear that accommodate being open. These feelings can trigger a number of exit impulses: to drop out, strike out, shut down, or remain superficial or guarded in group interactions. Because of this predictable vulnerability, you are supported in navigating three stages of group life. Inclusion, Control, and Belonging. When embraced thoughtfully, each stage develops the support group members need for commitment, truth telling, and connection.
This 12-month virtual immersion includes:
- Instructional guidance (racial and group development inquiries) from Ruth King
- Support from your RA Group members
- Q&A Support via your Designated Coordinators
- Shared learning from the RA-GDP Cohort - the larger community participating in this program
The Designated Coordinator's Role
Designated Coordinators play a pivotal role in the RA-GDP in that you represent the voice of your RA group throughout the program.
Prior to the program start, DCs invite members to participate in the program with you. You also enroll your RA group in the program (groups register, not individuals). Once the RA-GDP starts, DCs ensure an even flow of information between your RA group members and the program at large, interfacing with Ruth King at designated times throughout the year.
In this role, you have the added advantage of refining your observations and insights into how groups work and what they need as we engage race and racism in group life and over time. You will also learn from other DCs as they share the happenings in their group and receive feedback.
This is a great role for individuals who want to refine group process and racial awareness skills. We ask that you commit to this role for the duration of the program.
The RA-GDP is not a complete response to racial injury and injustice. Rather, we are deconstructing how we have been programed to respond to race and racism, and whether our habits are harming or healing. It offers an intentional, structured, and graceful way to examine our racial conditioning within affinity community and over time.
By understanding our racial conditioning and attending to group growth, we are learning how to embody racial awareness, stability, and social accountability. As these qualities ripen within, we become clearer about how we can lessen the weight of racial ignorance and injustice – internally and externally. We gradually discover that we can stay engaged with the truth of race and racism without shutting down or striking out.
The curiosity, sensitivity, and respect we will refine within our RA Group over this 12-month period is what strengthens our faith in humanity and purifies a dis-eased social heart. We will be able to stand tall in our understanding of our own race and respond to the racial cries of the world with fierce clarity.
"This is the teaching on unlearning American racial history and its impact on our hearts and minds." ~ Sydney Reece, M.E.d., educator, poet in social justice advocacy, and mindfulness-based meditation teacher
"Ruth is literally on a mission to get the blood pumping through the heart of humanity again. This program is for you if you are ready to show up differently, to be a part of the healing, to shift the paradigm, to uncover lineage and inherited beliefs." Are you ready? ~ Kristen Noel, Best Self Magazine