Immediate, illuminating, and hopeful: this is
the key set of talks given by leading Zen Buddhist teacher Larry Ward,
PhD, on breaking America’s cycle of racial trauma.
“I am a
drop in the ocean, but I’m also the ocean. I’m a drop in America, but
I’m also America. Every pain, every confusion, every good and every bad
and ugly of America is in me. And as I transform myself and heal and
take care of myself, I’m very conscious that I’m healing and
transforming and taking care of America. I say this for American cynics,
but this is also true globally. It’s for real.” -Dr. Larry Ward.
Shot at by the police as an 11-year-old
child for playing baseball in the wrong spot, as an adult, Larry Ward
experienced the trauma of having his home firebombed by racists. At Plum
Village Monastery in France, the home in exile of his teacher,
Vietnamese peace activist and Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, Dr. Ward
found a way to heal. In these short reflective essays, he offers his
insights on the effects of racial constructs and answers the question:
how do we free ourselves from our repeated cycles of anger, denial,
bitterness, pain, fear, violence? Larry Ward looks at the causes and
conditions that have led us to our current state and finds, hidden in
the crisis, a profound opportunity to reinvent what it means to be a
human being. This is an invitation to transform America’s racial karma.
“In this taut, fearless, and well-argued
manifesto, Larry Ward offers us a deeply insightful analysis of
America’s racial karma—of how it operates individually and
collectively—and how it can be worked with and transformed. Drawing on
Buddhist psychology, trauma theory, neuroscience, and years of practice …
the result is a searing, liberative, and tender work—a book that is
both urgent and necessary.” —Jan Willis, author of Dharma Matters: Women, Race, and Tantra
SHORT, ACCESSIBLE, HOPEFUL: Based on a set of talks
that the author is frequently invited to give in cites across the
United States, the book provides immediate answers and profound wisdom.