When students become our teachers

There is nothing more humbling and refreshing than taking the seat of the student. Especially for those of us who are considered leaders, organizers, authority figures and coaches. We, likely, need to practice follower-ship the most. And if this month is teaching us anything, it’s to lay back and let others lead.

In this week’s #WELLREAD, we’re contemplating what we “teachers” need to be learning right now. Whether it is how to step back and follow, or how to take responsibility for our racism, or how to not let anyone be an afterthought, or how to practice for the future, or how to not bi-pass our pain and face the truth. We have work to do. AND we have wisdom all around us.

When students become our teachers, we get to become innocent and curious again. We get to experience wonder. And we get to rediscover hope. And that’s exactly what we need right now. A boat load of hope.

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1. WALKOUT

They may not be old enough to vote, but students around the country demonstrated today that they mean business. This snapchat heat map shows the scope of National Walkout Day. But they are not stopping…here’s what the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas are doing to ensure the media doesn’t forget and they make history. And, student walkouts have changed history before.Here’s how.

Last Friday, Governor Rick Scott passed a gun bill in Florida that could arm teachers. But Black Children will most likely to be the victims of these policies. Check out Notes From the Field, a powerful performance capturing the many perspectives shaping the school to prison pipeline.

2. FLIPPING OUT

Conor Lamb pulled of a narrow win in the congressional special election, flipping a seat in the heart of Pennsylvania Trump country. The blue wave is rising and the GOP should be freaking out. Mark your calendars, it’s gonna be a busy election year. 3. THE RECKONING

Image by National GeographicAs wellbeing advocates, antiracism and dismantling white supremacy is central to our work of democratizing wellbeing. It calls for bold action in how we take responsibility for our part in the problem AND actively work towards creating the conditions for liberation. This week, National Geographic did just that in their latest issues. “For decades our coverage was racist. To rise above our past, we must acknowledge it. And on that note, UN panel just claimed that the US owes reparations to African Americans. Here’s what that could actually look like.

And we are doing a reckoning of our own. Join Rev angel Kyodo williams and Kerri Kelly for apowerful workshop of redemption, balance and belonging.

4. RADICAL FEM

Image by We Are WildfangThis month, we’re exploring what solidarity looks like within the women’s movement (hint: it doesn’t look like exclusion). Activist and organizer, Raquel Willis, says “no one can be an afterthought” and tells us what cis women can do to support trans women and imagine a movement that is for everyone. And America’s first transgender suicide hotline is LIVE. Here’s how you can help.

And while you’re at it ,wear it. GenEquality is making t-shirts that activate equality.

5. FUTURE PRACTICE

Image by Chani NicolasAdrienne Maree Brown reports from the future with a recommendation for revolution, belonging and collective care. The future challenges us to PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE — to understand the context, to consider the needs and to embody the truths. She says “remember we are miraculous and interconnected, and anything less is not worthy of the life-gift we have been given”.

And just in time for this Saturday’s new moon. According to Chani, “This new moon speaks directly to the hurts that hold us back. That prevent a part of our humanity from realizing its potential. That possess the keys to a greater understanding of ourselves.”

Oh, and here is the imaginary female run government the world needs right now. Yes, please.

6. SPIRITUAL BYPASS

“Our pursuit of Eastern spirituality as white people is often an attempt to escape the roots of violence our people have enacted and been complicit in. We run away to nature, India, or Latin America to meditate, tree pose, permaculture, and breathe our way out of the reality that we live in an empire dominating the world along the lines of class, race, and gender. Our attempts to go anywhere else on the globe to get away from this reality are futile. We cannot bypass the truth and holing ourselves off will not save us. We cannot escape our global, interlocking crises of oppression. Why do we keep doing this?” Powerful piece by Kelly Germaine on the dangers of spiritual bi-pass.

But it’s not too late for us. According to Marianne Williamson “when we do wake up, we slam it like nobody’s business”. Check out her recent TEDx talk.

7. THE MATRIARCHS

Tomorrow is the Notorious RBG’s birthday. For the love of God, may she serve on the bench until her last day and may that be many, many years from now. And we cannot wait for the RBG documentary to come out. This trailer is off the hook. Must watch of the week.