Skill in Action: Radicalizing Your Practice of Yoga to Create a Just World with Michelle Johnson hosted through Sangha Studio | November 13-15, 2020
Skill in Action: Radicalizing Your Practice of Yoga to Create a Just World with Michelle Johnson
Friday – Sunday, November 13-15, 2020 | held online via Zoom
Join us as we host teacher, author, social justice advocate, and intuitive healer Michelle Johnson in this special weekend workshop designed to explore patterns of oppression, power and privilege, and to respond to the current cultural challenges through practices of self-study, contemplation and collective action.
It can be difficult to remain centered amidst the chaos of a culture that continues to divide and conquer. Many are wondering how to respond to increasingly oppressive policies, political divisions and the current cultural upheaval. While we have questions about how to respond, Michelle believes that we must respond with steadfastness and courageous hearts to the urgent concerns of this time.
Contemplative practices, including meditation and yoga, allow us to work with sensation, toxic thought patterns, cultural conditioning, overwhelm, and anxiety through mindfulness and thoughtful care. In this workshop, we will deepen our understanding of the principles of justice and yoga; the workings of power and privilege, oppression and identity, suffering and liberation, and loving kindness.
What we will explore includes:
Embodied practice and asana
Creating culture: Agreements and assumptions
Privilege, Power and Oppression
Racism, Internalizations and intersectionality
Spiritual Bypassing and Cultural Appropriation
Dharma and Duty to intervene, disrupt and dismantle systems of oppression
The most effective tool of White Supremacy is Divide and Conquer. This system of oppression causes us to distance from ourselves and others, leaving us split apart both individually and collectively. Dismantling White Supremacy and systems of oppression requires turning towards, and facing one another.
Through the practice of yoga, we can experience personal transformation that allows us to approach one another with honesty, skill and awareness. Through sharing and conversation we will explore the ways White Supremacy and oppression become internalized, and how we, in turn, embody and perpetuate oppression individually and collectively.
We will practice asana (postures), meditation, mindfulness, pranayama (breathing), chanting and mantra work to sharpen our goals and visions for our work to change the world. We will create concrete plans to put our goals into action.
I am a social justice warrior, author, dismantling racism trainer, empath, yoga teacher and practitioner, and an intuitive healer. With over 20 years of experience leading dismantling racism work and working with clients as a licensed clinical social worker, I have a deep understanding of how trauma impacts the mind, body, spirit, and heart. My awareness of the world through my own experience as a black woman allows me to know, first-hand, how privilege and power operate.
I have a Bachelors of Arts degree from the College of William and Mary and a Masters degree in Social Work from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. I have worked in several non-profits and served as an elected official and on many non-profit boards of directors. I have led Dismantling Racism Trainings with large corporations, small non-profits, and community groups, including the ACLU-WA, Duke University, Google, This American Life, The Center for Equity and Inclusion, Eno River Unitarian Universalist Church, Lululemon, and many others. I published Skill in Action: Radicalizing Your Yoga Practice to Create a Just World in 2017; I teach workshops in yoga studios and community spaces nationwide. I am on the faculty of Off the Mat Into the World, and serve as the Co-Director of 18 Springs Healing Center in Winston-Salem, NC. I was a Tedx speaker at Wake Forest University in 2019, and I have been interviewed on several podcasts in which I explore the premise and foundation of Skill in Action, along with creating ritual in justice spaces, our divine connection with nature and Spirit, and how we as a culture can heal.
I lead courageously from the heart with compassion and a commitment to address the heartbreak dominant culture causes for many because of the harm it creates. I inspire change that allows people to stand in their humanity and wholeness in a world that fragments most of us. Whether in an anti-oppression training, yoga space, individual or group intuitive healing session, the heart, healing and wholeness are at the center of how I approach all of my work in the world. There are myriad of ways to work with me. I hope to support you on your healing journey and path towards wholeness in whatever capacity allows you to live your fullest life.