New event – we are proud to bring you a conversational + therapeutic writing space for queer, trans, black indigenous people of colour with a spiritual/religious practice.
About this event
We invite QTBIPOC (queer, trans, black and indigenous people of colour) folk with a spiritual or religious background, to an intimate conversation and generative, therapeutic writing space with buddhist author and activist Lama Rod Owens and poet and liberation psychologist, Dr Sanah Ahsan.
Sanah and Rod will explore the sacred space where spirituality and sexuality meet.
They will talk about the shame that many of us have internalised when it comes to exploring our sexualities as queer folks of colour, and what it means to reimagine a liberated relationship to sex, pleasure, faith and The Divine.
The session will include Rod and Sanah sharing writings/poetry, who will then guide people through some brief generative writing exercises.
Your guides on this journey
Being with this topic may give rise to different feelings or memories, some of which may be painful. Rod, Sanah and the organisers will be holding this in mind – this gathering will be underpinned by an ethos of compassion and care. Please take care of yourselves and each other, meet others with kindness and compassion, and attend to your own needs and boundaries within this space.
Participants will only be able to attend based on a simple application process, which exists to support intentionality and transparency about who will be in the space, ensuring it is for and held by QTBIPOC folks.
As a practice of care, and to facilitate trust and intimacy, we are asking all participants to keep their cameras on during the session. We understand that this may not feel possible for everyone, and therefore encourage you to check-in with whether this space feels right for you.
Sunday 20th March
4 – 6pm GMT / 11am – 1pm EST / 8-10AM PST
About Lama Rod Owens
Lama Rod Owens is a Buddhist minister, best-selling author, activist, yoga instructor, and authorized Lama, or Buddhist teacher, in the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism and is considered one of the leaders of his generation of Buddhist teachers.
He holds a Master of Divinity degree in Buddhist Studies from Harvard Divinity School and received the Harvard Divinity School’s Peter J. Gomes, STB ’68 Distinguished Alumni Honors in 2021. Owens is the co-author of Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love and Liberation and is a co-founder of Bhumisparsha, a Buddhist tantric practice and study community.
Lama Rod has appeared on Good Morning America, the BBC, and Sirius XM Radio’s Urban View. He has also been featured in the Washington Post Magazine and published in Buddhadharma, Lion’s Roar, Tricycle, The Harvard Divinity Bulletin and many others. He has offered talks, retreats, and workshops in more than seven countries across the globe. His book, Love & Rage: The Path to Liberation Through Anger, was published in June 2020 and featured in The Los Angeles Times’ Top Ten Best Sellers list in 2021. Love & Rage is critically acclaimed for its prophetic truth, timing and honesty and wisdom, in dealing with the multiplicity of challenges this generation is waking up to.
About Sanah Ahsan
Dr Sanah Ahsan is an award-winning poet, a liberation and community psychologist, a presenter, speaker and educator.
Her work is centred on compassion, troubling our colonial understandings of mental health and embracing each other’s madness. Her psychological practice draws on therapeutics, poetics, spirituality, and post-activism as interconnected practices to support racialised and marginalised people.
Her published research is on the deconstruction of whiteness within UK clinical psychology. She is currently building anti-racism as a core competence for clinical psychology training in academic settings, whilst facilitating therapeutic spaces for QTBIPOC and young people in a range of community settings.
Some of Sanah’s creative and media work ranges from presenting a Channel 4 documentary exploring the medicalisation of young people’s distress, to giving a TED Talk entitled ‘Rewriting my story with love and poetry as a queer muslim.’
The Guardian described Sanah’s poetry as “an exhilarating declaration of love and an invocation to bare the soul.” Sanah won the Outspoken Performance Prize for her poetry, and was recently shortlisted for the prestigious Bridport Poetry Prize. She is currently writing her debut poetry collection with support from Arts Council England.
The artwork for this event was kindly created by the super talented Reya (she/they).