August 2020

02Aug10:00 AM12:30 PMWhite and Awakening Together -- OnlineA Benefit for the East Bay Meditation Center and Spirit Rock's Dr. Marlene Jones Scholarship Fund10:00 AM - 12:30 PM Online Teacher(s): Crystal Johnson, PhD; Kitsy Schoen, MSW No prerequisiteOpen

Event Details

Dates: 8 Sundays, August 2 – September 20, 2020; 10:00am – 12:30pm. Registration open until July 31, 2020.
Sliding Scale: $50 – $1008. Code WA1C20.
Note: The average cost per person, per day to Spirit Rock to offer a program is $160.

ONLINE: Spirit Rock’s programs are now offered online only. Our sliding scale options include financial support for our teachers. We invite you to try this creative form of practice as we take care of one another and respond skillfully to COVID-19.

A Benefit for the East Bay Meditation Center and Spirit Rock’s Dr. Marlene Jones Scholarship Fund
Co-sponsored by Spirit Rock and The East Bay Meditation Center

Open to and designed for all self-identified white people at all levels of experience. 

This is a time in America when white people’s awareness of the terrible impact of racial injustice has increased dramatically in the context of the pandemic and following the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor. How can we respond? What can we do? What is whiteness, and how does it fit in with our dharma practice? How can we use the energy of this time to explore and address the suffering of racial injustice and promote, nurture and maintain greater inclusiveness and racial equity in our communities?

Living in the U.S. (and elsewhere), we have been shaped by social, economic and other systems in which unearned privilege accrues to white people. To the extent that we are unaware of this system of white privilege and racial conditioning, we are not free to make skillful choices about how to live our values in the world. Rather, we unwittingly behave in ways that lead to suffering for ourselves, our community and the larger society. Further, we may not realize how our conditioning makes us resistant to joining with other white people to change the system and ourselves.

White and Awakening Together is designed as a guided, collaborative exploration of our racial conditioning as white people. We will apply dharma practices to explore the (un)realities of whiteness, stay present with difficult experiences and enhance our capacity to skillfully be in diverse community. Through this collaboration, we will expand our shared capacity to help each other learn and grow in ways that support liberation for us all.

The class will include didactic teaching, small and large group discussion, experiential exercises and assigned readings. Each participant will be assigned to a small group for the term of the course. Previous experience with whiteness work and/or meditation not required. Please bring your open mind and your generous heart!

Please only take this class if you are: 1) comfortable navigating Zoom, AND 2) able to fully participate, attending at least 7 of the 8 meetings and engaging as skillfully as possible in your small home group.

Class objectives:
· Come together as a supportive community of white people to explore the dynamics and impact of whiteness from the personal to the systemic levels
· Increase awareness of the ways our behaviors, values, social norms and leadership practices perpetuate the status quo, and explore alternatives
· Work together to develop our capacity to stay fully present in difficult situations and conversations
· Explore the Buddhist practices that nurture us and sustain our capacity to take action for change

General Information

Online registration for our programs is available until 12 noon of the last business day prior to the day of the event (e.g. online registration for a Monday program ends at 12 noon on the prior Friday). If you can’t attend an event you registered for, please see our Cancellation Policy.


Visit our Online Bulletin Board for Ride Sharing to find or offer a ride.


Volunteer/Work Exchange opportunities, as well as full or partial Scholarships, may be available for this program. For more information, please contact the Volunteer Coordinator at


Even if you have been to Spirit Rock before, please review our Non-Residential Programs FAQ for useful information about what to wear, what to bring, how to get here, and more.


On-land Programs and COVID Safety Protocols. Learn More