Join us the BFoD Sangha Forum in March.
The Beyond Fear of Differences (BFoD) initiative began over a decade ago as a peer-led education and discussion group at the Zen Center of New York City around issues of race, gender, power, privilege and oppression.
In the summer of 2016, Shugen Roshi invited a group of sangha members to participate in a Beyond Fear of Differences planning group at Zen Mountain Monastery. This group joined with the Temple’s People of Color Tea Group for regular meetings, beginning in October of 2017.
On September 1st, 2018, the ZMM BFoD Planning Group and the People of Color Tea Group met for the fourth time, and voted to combine into a single group—BFoD. This group is working together and within committees to do this work together and bring it to the wider sangha.
As this larger BFoD Group continues to work together, BFoD’s Vision and Mission may change and evolve. Check this page periodically for updates.
Some resources that we’ve found helpful in our own work.
10 Values Guiding our Beyond Fear of Differences Work
- Trust—Cultivating and earning a confidence that we are working toward our mutual well-being and liberation
- Equity—To create just outcomes, we recognize that different treatment—including reparations—is sometimes required because of historical oppression and our varying positions in contemporary society.
- Courage—The ability to step forward, be vulnerable, tolerate discomfort, and hold space for new ideas.
- Accountability—The Sangha—teachers, seniors, monastics, Board, students, Councils, practitioners—are mutually responsible for upholding these values and communicating with each other.
- Humility—Recognition of the depth of our own conditioning and the vastness of the path.
- Reverence—A deep respect for each other’s humanity and identities, and the transformative power of the Buddhadharma.
- Generosity—The willingness to embrace all our experiences of sangha with openness and appreciation; also the willingness to give and take in feedback on the impact of our actions as part of our dharma training.
- Whole Person Framework—In our study and liberation of the self, we recognize that because our social identities are not experienced in isolation, they cannot be examined in isolation.
- Cultural Fluency—Knowing that we live in a white supremacist culture and that our views are conditioned by power and privilege, we commit to our ongoing learning and understanding of each other’s cultural and ethnic identities.
- Authenticity—Truly being connected with our emotions, expressions, and experience.
If you have questions, or resources you’d like to share with us, we’d love to hear from you: email@example.com