Four Dignities of Examining Whiteness and Racism

with Gabriel Dayley & Alison Pepper

October 3rd—October 27th

Date details +
  • $100 Patron
  • $85 General
  • $50 Members
  • $40 Students
  • Pay what you can ($20 min.)
Room: Online

Open to practitioners who have an established meditation practice in any lineage of meditation and identify as white.

Please join us in October for a special program presented by Race, Racism, and Racial Inequality (RRR).

Early registration is recommended as space is limited. Priority will be given to those who have been attending the RRR meetings at the member price. Zoom information will be sent prior to the first class.

This program will offer an examination of race, whiteness, and systemic racism for meditation practitioners who identify as white, providing a foundation from which white-identified meditators can begin the path of exploring their own social conditioning and cultivating tools to support them in confronting systemic racism and oppression in our society.

The workshop incorporates the path of the Four Dignities, a central element of the Shambhala teachings and framework for the meditator’s journey. Integrating Dharma teachings and embodied contemplative practices with material from the study of race, peacebuilding, and history, we will employ these teachings as a guide for how we can show up with fearlessness and gentleness to address racism in our community and society. We will invite curiosity and concerns about racism and create opportunities to increase our awareness of what we as white people often don’t see in ourselves and in our communities.

Why a course for white people? 

In creating a more awake society, we all have a responsibility to apply the Dharma to addressing suffering in our world. This includes white-identified meditators investigating their own social conditioning as white people and how this impacts people of color in our communities and in society at large. Many people of color throughout the Shambhala community and other meditation communities in North America have urged white people to do this important work in a setting that does not burden people of color with being the educators. The Race, Racism, and Racial Inequality group is offering this course in that spirit. For more information on the reasons for conducting racial justice and awareness work in a ‘caucus’ among people identified with the same race, check out this article by Shambhala teacher Alex Vlasic on How White Caucuses Contribute to Racial Justice. 

About the Teachers

Gabe Dayley serves as Project Associate for climate action planning at the County of Albemarle, Virginia, with a focus on developing equitable, inclusive, and just strategies. He founded and edits The Arrow Journal, which investigates applications of contemplative wisdom traditions to confronting pressing environmental, social, and political challenges. Formerly he served as Executive Director of the DC Shambhala Center, and was raised in the Shambhala tradition by parents who studied with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Gabe received a B.A. in International Relations from Pomona College and an M.A. in International Peace and Conflict Resolution from American University. He has designed and led workshops that apply Shambhala teachings to examining whiteness and racism, investigating toxic masculinity, and confronting the climate crisis.

Alison Pepper LCSW,  is a trauma informed therapist in NYC specializing in Buddhist psychotherapy. Alison attended the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter where she got her Master’s degree. She has been a part of the Race, Racism and Racial Inequality group for the last three years, having and facilitating conversations about race. Alison has been teaching with Shambhala children programs at the Shambhala Meditation Center of New York, Skylake Retreat Center, and Karme Choling for the last ten years. When she isn't in the shrine room or therapy office you can find Alison in the garden or woods creating nature therapy group work and play based work for children, families, and creative adults.


Still have questions or curiosity? Don’t hesitate to reach out. You can email us at [email protected]