Social Engagement in Shambhala



“We humans have come to a crossroads in our history. We can either destroy the world or create a good future.”  — Sakyong Mipham, The Shambhala Principle

Shambhala meditators from many locations and walks of life feel increasingly moved to face outward, to find ways to transform society. Yes, we invest time and energy in personal transformation by working with our minds and hearts, but it goes well beyond “me.”  As the Sakyong points out in The Shambhala Principle, personal and social transformation are inseparable.

Diversity in Shambhala

The Sakyong has said we are at a crossroads, and not to be afraid of who we are.  The Diversity Working Group (DWG) tries to live the questions that arise: Can we welcome all people, as stated in the Shambhala Aspirations on Diversity, Accessibility and Compassionate Conduct? If so, why don’t we more closely resemble the communities in which we’re located? Do we unconsciously create barriers between ourselves and others? What does it mean to be a responsible Shambhalian?  As the world grows increasingly diverse, can Shambhala contribute to a diverse enlightened society? The voices in this 35-minute video describe what the DWG is doing and why. Also, see the Diversity page for updates and more info.

Shambhala Eco-Forum

Marty Janowitz close Irene Woodard EcoInner Confidence, Outer EffectivenessSeptember 26, 2015, hosted by Acharya Marty Janowitz, Ms. Irene Woodard and the Boulder Shambhala Center’s Salon on Climate Change and Society.
Acharya Janowitz will offer opening remarks on Exploring the View, Practice and Action of Warrior Eco-Activism.

Check out One Earth Sangha for a wealth of resources and the eco-sattva perspective on climate change.

Social Action:  Chicago Shambhala Center

The Chicago Shambhala Center is deeply engaged in social action, collaborating with multiple community organizations and sharing expertise in meditation and mindfulness. The Making Peace Possible conference in Chicago (2013), where the Sakyong offered the keynote address, marked an important milestone in Shambhala social engagement.

One unexpected outcome of the Imagining Peace conference was the birth of the Speak Up Chicago open mic night. This monthly event provides youth a forum for performing and giving voice to their experience. The Sakyong and Chicago’s social engagement projects were featured in this CBS broadcast.

Right Livelihood

Shastri Gayle Van Gils empowers people to find their life’s work and make it pay off in multiple ways — making a difference in the world while earning a living. Here are some resources from Shastri Van Gils’ unique point of view.
– Doing Good While Doing Well, article in Elephant Journal
– Be a Visionary Changemaker, the first module in her Shambhala Online course (below), free
– Social Entrepreneurs: Get Paid to Change the World, a 10-week online course that can transform how you view your work and worth.

Ziji Collective Summit

Young Shambhalians from across the mandala gathered for a Summit in Mexico City, June 2015.  A short video about the Ziji Collective Summit.

Environmental Justice

Shambhala Online will host a series of forums on the environment. Subscribe below for updates.

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