Saturday & Sunday
November 17th & 18th
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Both Days)
(Register for Exact Location)
NOTE: Due to the high level of interest in this workshop, we have decided to close the open registration process.
In keeping with our commitment to diversity, we are keeping a few more slots open to self-identified People of Color, with a strong encouragement to those who identify as men of color to register. Anyone who wishes to participate but does not identify as a Person of Color may still fill out the form to be put on a waitlist and be notified if a slot opens up.
Please click the link below to find out more about why this decision was made, and to fill out the form.
All of our programs are offered on a Gift Economics model, which means we do not charge a fee. Click here to read more about this model.
How do we stop injustice in its tracks while acknowledging the interconnectedness of all people?
How do we protect ourselves while nurturing a relationship with our broken-heartednness?
How do we build a movement that can shut down a highway while creating a culture of opening up?
How do we build a movement with the militancy to occupy a government building and the sensitivity to see it as an act of healing?
How can we come to experience vulnerability as a strength, not a weakness?
Our world is in crisis. Our social systems are being torn apart, our economic systems have created historic levels of wealth disparity, and earth’s life support systems are on the brink of collapse. The need for a powerful direct action movement that nurtures a radical, fundamental transformation has never been greater. Despair seems to be in the air we breathe and can be felt in the depth of our hearts.
Yet our need is not only a transformation of systems and laws and policies. What we yearn for is a fundamental transformation of our hearts, our values and our relationships – to ourselves, to each other, and to the earth.
Fierce Vulnerability is an attempt to build such a movement. A movement that understands the assertiveness that is needed to address the crises of our times. A movement that sees social change as a radical act of healing. A movement that knows that each of us needs to heal as much as those we may feel compelled to blame. A movement that knows that violence hurts all parties. A movement that will never see any individual as disposable, undeserving of dignity, or incapable of transformation.
Fierce Vulnerability is born of the conviction that our vulnerability is our greatest strength. Vulnerability makes us whole, and that wholeness is the only thing that can undo generations of investment in plunder and exploitation.
Join us and let us explore together what it might look like to enter into movement spaces with the courage to be our whole selves, sometimes courageous, sometimes fearful, sometimes clear, sometimes confused, sometimes joyous, sometimes grieving, often a mixture of all of these. We seek to bring ourselves as we are, in service to life, growing in our capacity to be fierce in our vulnerability and vulnerable in our ferocity.
Nirali Shah is a meditation teacher who teaches retreats regularly throughout the Bay Area. She served in one of the largest slum communities of Asia for more than four years, part of it, working out of the Gandhi Ashram. She is the founder of Shvaas, a non-profit platform that has helped hundreds of volunteers work on social change projects.
Sierra Pickett is a long-time leader and member of the East Bay Meditation Center, and has a passion for building accessible Sanghas. She is also on the Board of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship and East Point Peace Academy, and sees the work of weaving webs of relationships as an act of love.
Chris Moore-Backman is the Operations Coordinator at East Point Peace Academy, is the author of the book The Gandhian Iceberg and the producer of the radio documentary series, Bringing Down the New Jim Crow. He has worked with many organizations working on peace and justice issues, and has served on international peace teams in Colombia and Palestine.
Kazu Haga is the founder of East Point Peace Academy and is a trainer/facilitator in nonviolence and restorative justice. He has over 20 years of experience in social justice work, and is deeply committed to empowering incarcerated communities and building Beloved Community.