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What Would Healing Look Like?

No Time to Lose


Estimated reading time: 1 minute
How do we navigate the intersecting griefs of personal loss and centuries of systemic racial oppression? Belvie Rooks's journey toward healing shines a powerful light amid the darkness of state violence and ecological destruction.
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Western Dharma has only recently begun to acknowledge that anger can contain necessary wisdom, that it can be an expression of wholeness and a call to right-action. Does grief have its own unique and powerful awakening potential? Versus a mental-emotional state to be transformed, can we recognize extended grief as an especially persistent teacher?

In this moving presentation, Belvie Rooks shares with us her exploration of the Dharma of immense and intersecting griefs. She draws on Thích Nhất Hạnh’s prediction of a collective Buddha, on her grandmother’s generosity and wisdom, and on the poetry of Alice Walker in this talk on reconciling the irreconcilable.


“I’d been on a journey of intersecting griefs. I was grieving the loss of the very hopeful possibilities that Dr. King had faith in.”

“But for such a time as this that you were born—to take responsibility for the whole.”

“The very act of planting a tree is an act of commitment to a future. Trees grow.”

This teaching is excerpted from No Time to Lose: A Dharma Response to Climate Change, a daylong event hosted in September 2019 by Spirit Rock Insight Meditation Center. Participating teachers included Joanna Macy, Belvie Rooks, Jennifer Berezan, Venerable Anālayo, James Baraz, Thanissara, Tara Brach, Jack Kornfield, and others. View the video from the entire day here.

Picture of Belvie Rooks

Belvie Rooks

Belvie Rooks incorporates meditation and stillness as part of her youth/elder, intergenerational wisdom circles. Co-founder of “Growing a Global Heart” along with her late husband, Poet Dedan Gills, she has engaged in ceremonial tree plantings along the Trans-Atlantic Slave Route in West Africa and the Underground Railroad in the United States and Canada.
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