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Inner / Outer

I’m seeing some people lowkey pit inner work (the very important work of educating yourself, confronting your own complicity in white supremacy and systemic oppression, etc) against outer work (action items like protesting, calling representatives, signing petitions, donating money, voting, etc) or vice versa.

But here’s the thing: Both are critical. One does not negate or replace the other in either direction. They work in tandem.  

Action without foundation can be dangerous. But (and I can’t believe I’m quoting the B*ble rn) Faith without works is dead. 

While we should absolutely prioritize our internal anti-racist work, when we pit that against action, we run the risk of falling into a “Love and Light” message that gives white people a way to feel superior while bypassing actual accountability or action. This is an ongoing, highly problematic element in white spiritual communities. 

It’s not an either/or situation. It’s not a hierarchal thing. And you can’t hide comfortably behind “working on yourself” while Black people are literally fighting for their lives.

Yes, if you are a white person protesting without doing the difficult, lifelong inner anti-racism work, you’re missing the point. But as Rachel Cargle so succinctly says: “I don’t want your love and light if it doesn’t come with solidarity and action.”

Do both.


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