A New Friend, A Powerful Exchange, and The Systems of Privilege

I just returned home from a meeting with a new friend. She reached out to me to learn more about my work as a soul nurturer. Turns out, it was a mutually powerful exchange of ideas and energy.

I drove home with this blog inside of me. It has actually been coalescing for days, months and even possibly a lifetime thinking back to vivid memories of what it felt like to be in an extremely diverse first grade classroom and beyond while being educated in Norfolk, Virginia.

To be honest, I don't even really know how I am going to release my thoughts and feelings succinctly and clearly after this exchange, but something clicked deep within me—a clarity—that I feel compelled to share.

For some, this post may ring true in a way that makes them feel quite uncomfortable. For others, there will ring no truth, and it will literally mean nothing. If you are in the former group, I ask you to please take some time to reflect upon the uncomfortable feelings. They could be important...

Basically, our world is going through big changes both above and below the surface. And when my friend began to discuss her work helping others to see how the "systems of privilege" interact with one another to affect the lens through which we see the world, and therefore the action that we take in our world, I felt a deep recognition within my soul the truth of what she was expressing.

I have recently been voicing more and more to a few trusted individuals that I am moving away from simply espousing personal spiritual growth and more towards voicing the need for a greater feeling of spiritual activism to uplift the human condition.

From my experience on the self-exploration path, once we move deeply enough into our interior, where self-love merges with oneness, and once a soul to soul perspective becomes embedded into our heart and consciousness, then the rubber must eventually meet the road.

In other words, the questions begin to arise: So what does this spirituality actually look like lived? How does it change my politics, my economics, my life choices, my outlook, my willingness to change the status quo that benefits me?

I have begun to contemplate frequently the above questions, and I have realized that while my work focuses primarily upon assisting those who desire personal spiritual development, another very important step in the journey is how the individual growth can be of service to our world.

Slowly, but surely, yet undeniably, the systems of privilege that my friend addressed—the big three being CLASS, RACE, and SEX—are breaking down, creating much confusion, anger and fear for many people.

And if we become truly spiritual, then eventually we must face the systems of privilege that keep the majority of our species on the sidelines, and in all too many cases, dehumanized, poverty-stricken, hopeless, oppressed and out of the game completely.

It seems that all of our spiritual understandings that lead to a deeper knowing of ultimate Oneness become rendered meaningless in this realm if we cannot find a way to live them.

These systems of privilege are so bound to one another and intertwined that many people can no longer see the individual threads that make up the whole. What we see played out in our world has everything to do with these systems of privilege that separate us from one another—keeping a very select few in control and on top.

When we are part of the systems of privilege that keep us on top (as I and pretty much everyone I know are), then we are typically very, very reluctant to include anything into our reality that may breakdown the systems in place to allow for change.

Our first inclination is to think that it is better to just leave well enough alone. And yet, as we begin to awaken into the spiritual truth of who we really are, and therefore, who our fellow man really is, somewhere deep, deep inside, we know that there is a different, higher way for us all.

Thoughts like, my children could make do with much less—materially and educationally—so that other children could simply have a little more, begin to surface more often.

Honestly, I don't even know if this blog will make sense. My fingers are furiously typing with excitement because I have felt a strong inner desire as of late to speak up and out, above and beyond simply the spiritual aspect of life to include where humanity and spirit meet—how it all merges together to create greater well-being in our physical world.

This is my passion. This is my soul's longing. This is the arena where I feel called to contribute.

Can many of us, myself included, move past the comfortability of where we are and what has been, and into a new model where systems of privilege are not the determining factor of the game?

I am calling out for more of us to begin to share our thoughts about what is really going on in our world—especially those of us embedded fully in many of the systems of privilege who stand to "lose" the most when the world shifts towards greater fairness, compassion and love.

I love all of the fun and lightness shared on social media, I really do. I enjoy partaking in much of it. But I also feel like this platform that has been created in our world is simply too powerful and important to choose not to contribute our voice in some purposeful way.

I long to hear more from people. What is truly in your heart? What are your ideas for change? What do you desire to contribute to our world? How do you yearn to serve?

I know that this may seem heavy. As my husband says, "Annie, some people just want ice cream, and honey, you sure know how to serve up a heaping plate of broccoli!"

I get that, I really do, and please know that I really love the ice cream, too. It's just that even as a very young child, ice cream just wasn't gonna be enough for me, and my great hope is that it is not enough for most of us within the systems of privilege today...

The paradox is, of course, that there is nothing that we have to do to be uplifted AND there is much to be done to uplift.

Thank you for reading all the way through if you got this far.

Warmth and LOVE,


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