Deep Diversity Class Notes
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Deep Diversity Class Notes

Based on this book:

Conversation Agreements

Be curious and listen to understand.

Conversation is as much about listening as it is about talking. You might enjoy exploring how others’ experiences have shaped their values and perspectives.

Show respect and suspend judgment.

People tend to judge one another. Setting judgement aside opens you up to learning from others and makes them feel respected and appreciated. Try to truly listen, without interruption or crosstalk.

Note any common ground as well as any differences.

Look for areas of agreement or shared values that may arise and take an interest in the differing beliefs and opinions of others.

Be authentic and welcome that from others.

Share what’s important to you. Speak from your experience. Be considerate of others who are doing the same.

Be purposeful and to the point.

Do your best to keep your comments concise and relevant to the question you are answering. Be conscious of sharing airtime with other participants.

Own and guide the conversation.

Take responsibility for the quality of your participation and the conversation as a whole. Be proactive in getting yourself and others back on track if needed.

Do not ask for nor give advice. Instead, please speak from personal experience

Speak in a way that communicates personal responsibility and respect for others. We all have different needs and conditioning so no one is an expert on any one group, problem or solution.

Ask for a pause

Take care of yourself during the group meetings.Β  When you feel overwhelmed, offended or want to circle back to something that was previously shared Β feel free to either take a personal pause or, if it is something you want to bring to the whole group, you can ask for a group pause.

2021-01-24 - Large Group Discussion

  • Breakout
    • Introduction: share your name, where you are, what drew you to the program, and what is your favorite way to deal with the pandemic? (2 min per person)
    • Listening exercise, not speaking
    • Be mindful of how I relate to what others are saying
    • (My reason: learn to replace avoidance/false pacifism with skillful engagement)

  • Goal: increase the amount of freedom/choices between emotion and reaction
  • Cultural conditioning exists where we relate more to those who are like us - it is natural - but when left unseen, can perpetuate suffering in the world
  • What are ways to expand empathy/loving-kindness?
  • "What one frequently ponders become inclination of the mind," said the Buddha
    • Subconscious pattern of division

  • Breakout
    • What is our starting point? (demonstrate, reflect first, what feels safe)
      • (Finding myself really thinking about how to not put others in an awkward position instead of focusing on reflecting myself...going through the rolodex of stories)
      • (Finding myself feeling awkward when others express white guilt! Shared this but then felt bad about sharing it!)
    • Describe an early memory of race (not necessarily racism)
    • Name, pronouns
    • Ethnicity, socioeconomic affliation
    • Gender identity, sexual orientation, generation, education

2021-01-26 - Small Group Discussion