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Buddhadharma : Spring 2018
THANISSARA 49 distorted conditioning are unpacked, how can it be any other way? And in any case, why should white patriarchal sanghas maintain their comfort zones, their controlled calm spaces, while others who are marginalized struggle as the direct result of those in the master’s house refusing to authentically share or give over power? Ajahn Chah said, “True but not right, right but not true.” Wherever we are in the spectrum of this dialogue, when we take fixed positions we miss something essential, which is the territory of the unbiased heart that relinquishes identification with any selfview. Ultimately, this is the only space where real freedom lies. Aligned with that, we realize something true and liberating is happening: the deconstruction of white, patriarchal, hierarchal Buddhism is answering the imperative of the heart that rejects the agony of divi sion. A root cause of suffering is the heart dividing against its deeper alliance with all beings. When we cease this division, then, attuned to the intelligence of the living dharma, we hear a way through the tangle of delusion that perpetuates racism. Instead of staying stuck in a separatist, entitled, nonrelevant paradigm, we can proactively make bridges into a world that is calling us forward. In my experience, this work, while challenging, generates sangha spaces that are dynamic, intelligent, creative, deeply healing, and optimal for realizing our innate potential. Together, we have a chance to construct a different kind of sangha house, one that sup ports a truly equitable ground for awakening—for all. When dharma practice focuses primarily on individual efforts, the wound of historic racism gets configured as a personal failing rather than acknowledged as a collective responsibility.