School of Movement Medicine - Mindfulness in Motion

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Issue: Spring Extra Movement Medicine Newsletter
MM Environmental and Social Justice Group

By Kristin Glenewinkel
I want to share a bit of my journey here, about purpose and our engagement in the world. When I started the apprenticeship in 2012 I was told that it was about finding a deeper connection to my purpose of life. Why am I here and what is important for me, what really matters?

We danced with these questions and in addition did the "Awakening the Dreamer“ symposium. During this process we danced into the future and met the children of a possible future. I was surrounded by children with different skin colors; brown skin--dark skinned mostly. These children were so full of joy and radiance!

They told me that I had lived a life for social justice and that I had dedicated my heart to the rainbow nation, a nation that doesn’t exclude any colors.  They were very loving and thanked me as their ancestor and also saw me wheeping and acknowledged my hardship. Coming back from this journey into the future I was overwhelmed and very scared. What was this about? Was this my life purpose? Would I live and dedicate my life to a rainbow nation, to a socially just humanity where skin color doesn't make any difference? "Oh no," I said to myself, "I cant do this. Thats too much. Look at me, blue eyes and very light skinned, how would I ever make a difference?" 

I shared these feelings with my peer group members and they were accepting and gentle with me. One lady said to me, "Do you know that you are already living this dream, that you have created your little rainbow nation at home? Can you see that you embody these values on a very physical level?"  I was shocked. My partner is African-American, our son has brown skin. We do live in this constellation and face issues of racism.  My son struggels with the fact that his hair is different than the others kid's hair. I never considered my commitment to the relationship with my man a political statement. I was simply living my life as it was. I wasn't aware how much energy it took and how many emotions went through me or how many discussions I had been in, fighting for more awareness about the subtle racism we deal with every day.

The next step in my Apprenticeship was to accept where I was;  to look at my life and slowly acknowledge and embrace the situation I live in. I want to become more aware of the one I already am. I need to somehow come deeper into my own skin, my own being. I always thought I must build a big school in Africa and have a great organization helping people, working against racism. I might go in this direction one day but for me at the moment it is important to simply embody the one I am, to stand behind myself when I am walking down the streets with my family, particularly when I end up in a discussion about racism and social injustice. This is a slow proces and my mind keeps telling me that simply living the life I have is not enough. There must be some organized protest and big campaign happening! I respect this drive inside me and I also sense that it really touches people if i fully stand my ground, fully stand for what I love. I remember a situation were I sat in the tram with my family and a old lady watched us. She looked at us with resistance, I almost could read her thoughts, "what does this woman want with this black man, look at them!" Usually I would try to disconnect or start thinking negatively about this woman and how preoccupied people are. In this situation I started to feel my body, to make sure I was fully there. Breathing I see my man and I feel my commitment and my love for him. I come into this moment fully and stand behind myself and once we got off the tram the woman followed us with her eyes and I saw a little smile when I smiled at her.

 I believe deeply that skin color doesnt matter and that we are all beautiful human beings and as long as skin color matters in a job interview, crossing a boarder, standing at the security check or being watched in a shop I know there is no peace. As long as human beings treat each other without respect for the way they are made, in beautiful, different colors, how will we ever find space to solve our real human problems?

I learned that being fully embodied is enough to live my purpose and it doesn't have to be big, it doesnt have to be written in the newspaper. I am the one I am and I stand next to my man and my child. This is my contribution and I know many, many human beings are standing tall and living their purpose like this every day. So the formal apprenticeship is over and I am becoming a Movement Medicine teacher. Often I see the children of the future greeting me and waving at me, making sure that I feel my life purpose close to my heart.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent the views of the School of Movement Medicine. Roland Wilkinson, Nappers Crossing, Staverton, Devon TQ9 6PD, UK Tel & Fax +44 (0)1803 762255 http://www.