by Freida Maverick
I am reaching out within the secular dharma/secular Buddhist community to the women who are concerned with female sex-based rights, to advise of a Facebook group called Mindful Feminists. The purpose of the Mindful Feminists Facebook group is to support each other to recollect, and mindfully hold, core qualities of compassion, presence and wisdom while standing firm, with loving-kindness and courage, to the task of defending and advocating for female sex-based rights in a world that is largely misogynistic.
Secular dharma/secular Buddhism is an obvious framework for such a purpose, as it is grounded in material reality and the relinquishment of strong attachment to identity. To embrace life – the first task – is to be embodied in the material reality of being born as a human female or male, in this world at this time. The second task is to let go of reactivity conditioned by the three fires of greed, hatred and delusion. The path leading to the ending of reactivity is, as the Buddha said, mindfulness directed to the body. This mindfulness allows for a lucid, calm presence.
The third task is to know this presence intimately, so that one may return to presence directly and immediately at will, as a prerequisite for responding appropriately, with care and wisdom, to whatever condition arises. Responding appropriately to conditions – situations and circumstances – is the fourth task, outlined in the eightfold path.
We are certainly not short of causes to become involved with as socially engaged secular dharma practitioners/secular Buddhists. Our greatest contribution to social justice is to be fearlessly present to the greed, hatred and delusion of disembodied minds – minds that are not grounded in material reality but are mindlessly conditioned by the three fires – and to respond from mindfulness as embodied female or male humans.
As feminists, protecting and advocating for the material sex-based rights and needs of females is crucial to counteracting the misogyny that arises from the three fires, but facing such a barrage of greed, hatred and delusion aimed at our sex can make it difficult to remain compassionate, wise, and present. The Mindful Feminists Facebook group may be one small refuge for the women of secular dharma/secular Buddhism who are socially engaged in advocating for females.
To join this new Facebook group, click here and then click on ‘Join Group’.