As a concerned community members and activists, whenever we perceive a situation that is the result of suffering and oppression, we pride ourselves in moving into action. Too often however, our default mode is reactive and we often act without listening first to ourselves, to each other and/or to community needs. Listening: a Community’s First Response is not a project with a scheduled program of activities, instead it is a collective breath in response to emerging issues that demand quick action: asylee crisis, acts committed out of ignorance, hate and racism, environmental injustices, and others .
Sidni Lamb is the founder and chief dot connector of Mindful New Mexico, as well as a recovering “save the world” enthusiast. From international humanitarian aid worker and United Nations diplomat, to university professor, mindfulness facilitator and social entrepreneur, her work has always aimed at facilitating connections. Listening is a continuous practice and we cannot not communicate. Silence itself is a form of communication. The question is are we listening to each other and as a collective?
The vision of Mindful New Mexico emerged from her revised understanding of what making a difference really means : that my individual journey is linked to our collective journey; and in that inter-connectedness, one of my practices is learning to listen so she can connect .
Over the last several months, from the listening sessions and stories from partners involved in other projects, she has become painfully aware to the degree of the racism and sexism that many community members have experienced from activists who themselves are engaged in anti-bias work. This TPP grant will help address specific individual behaviors, while helping address the structural injustices we have co-created.
“When we listen to each other we can begin to build a relationship. When we listen for someone’s truth build relationships and trust.”