Healing is a Social Justice Issue

Copy of The ugly truth about self love (17)

Within a society that is anti-wellness, it’s not enough to avoid talking about social justice issues. Healing is more than just self-love quotes and breathing exercises. It’s a deep introspective look into the social ills that are the causes of people’s pain and distress.

“We have to talk about liberating minds as well as liberating society” – Angela Davis

How does one become their ‘best version’ when they are faced with physical state violence that threatens their right to self-determination? How do you tell someone who lives with the threat of being stopped and searched or even killed by the police based on the colour of their skin that they are ‘in control of their reality’? If healing is about overcoming something that has had an impact on your mental well-being, then we must talk about the root causes. When we talk about healing, it’s not enough to speak only on codependency, boundaries, manifestation, confidence and so forth. We have to consider how economic inequality, racism, imperialism, and patriarchy impacts people’s emotional, mental and physical well-being.

Examples of Societal issues impacting one’s Mental Health:

Institutional Racism 

A black person constantly being stopped by the police and experiencing unfair treatment within the judicial system based on the colour of their skin. Being accused of things you did not do and being labelled a criminal or perpetrator when they are not the perpetrators of violence. This is institutional racism.

Capitalism.

Growing up poor and not being able to afford necessities. A poor child in school can’t afford to go on school trips, gets picked on because they don’t have the latest clothes. Parents have to be at work all the time to keep a roof over their head which results in the child being neglected physically and emotionally. The child grows up with self-esteem issues because of their circumstances. This is capitalism.

Patriarchy 

Having to watch what you wear in public in case you give men the perception that you want their attention. Being questioned whether you’re competent enough to be in a management position because you’re a woman. This is patriarchy.

A young boy being told that crying is a sign of weakness so decides to hide his feelings and suffer in private. Growing up angry and not knowing why. Internalising his feelings of self-hate and anger towards the world. This patriarchy.

Imperialism 

A person suffers from PTSD because of drone strikes. They experience disturbed sleep and flashbacks of relatives dying. Others in their situation have become refugees and experience xenophobia in the new countries where they reside. They battle with their mental health problems on top of being ostracised by society. This is imperialism.

 

Why it’s important to talk about social justice issues?

All of these issues restrict people’s right to self-determination and actualisation. They break a person’s spirit and bring a sense of hopelessness. Healing is something that all humans should do and it’s not limited to people who are interested in personal development. To move individuals towards self-empowerment and healing, we need to acknowledge and validate other people’s struggles. We need to hold institutions accountable for their role in producing an unwell society.

We are all citizens of the world and I believe it is our responsibility to speak out against injustice and do our part in creating a better world. You don’t need to protest to make a difference. You can use your platform, you can educate people around you, you can do community work that helps uplift and elevate others.

 

Journal Prompts:

1. Are you avoiding talking about social justice issues?

2. What ways can you educate yourself on the struggles of black and brown people?

3. How are you contributing to uplifting and empowering your community?

 

Question to you:

What are your thoughts?

I’d love to know what you think!

 

Love Ash, xx

26 Comments

  1. You raise interesting points. But, whenever I read, listen, discuss about such topics I often wonder what part we play as people in the way we are treated. It’s true that if you are constantly subject to discrimination and rejection or anything like that, you become very self conscious and a bit paranoid. I’ve often seen and heard people of color (I live in France, so that would be either Blacks or people with a Noethern African background) put themselves in the victim position. I don’t know if you see what I mean. But I’ve noticed that some people believe they are going to be discriminated against and therefore they don’t even try, and they behave as if they were already rejected. I don’t know if that makes sense for you. Anyways, these subjects are always very interesting and controversial. They are not simple, it’s not black or white in my understanding.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. Hey, thanks for sharing your opinion. I understand what you’re saying. I think what you mention is a symptom of living in a racist society. It causes people to be paranoid and on the defense. We all have to take accountability in making our condition worse however within a racist society, one that was built on inequality , colonialisation and slavery, racism is embedded in the fabrics of society. If people don’t even try, it’s still as a result of the society they live in. My thing is we can’t blame individuals for their fate, we have to look a the society which tries to keep people under these conditions. This isn’t a matter of respectability politics. As a graduate who’s traveled the world, and go extensive work experience, I’ve experienced racism which has been disheartening. So I can only imagine someone who grew up poor, raised in a violence ridden area not even wanting to try to succeed after experiencing racism. It’s not enough for non black people to say that they are ‘not racist’- they have to continue unlearning white supremacy. Just because a white person hasn’t said a derogatory word towards a black person doesn’t mean they aren’t perpetrating racism in other ways I.e. putting blacks in poorer housing etc. it’s a multilayered issue but I think we need I really look at society and stop blaming people who are victims to an oppressive system.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Well said about a process that intensely complex and convoluted. I have a perspective that says changing the heart and minds of people is going to be a long term process. It takes those voices like yours, and the above comments by Monaminga, that will slowly start diminish thousands of years of conditioned boundaries. Thanks for this post.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I totally agree with you! I was having a conversation similar to this with a friend and I was saying ‘ imagine how difficult it is to change our behavior so can you imagine how hard it would be to do that for someone else’. People have to be willing to change but there needs to be more access to alternative POV so people can be educated. Thank you for sharing your perspective 💜

      Liked by 2 people

  3. This is really amazing and thanks for talking about it. Lot’s of us try to be happy and “posi” like those self love ppl say, but it’s not gonna work because there’s other problems some of us deal with that’s out of our control.
    I think more law of attraction people need to talk about this. all they talk about is ignoring the bad, don’t let negativity in etc, but they’re not talking about injustices out of our control.
    that’s why i stopped following and supporting lots of those types of people, because they don’t get it, like you just explained.
    thanks for sharing im gonna use those questions in my journal and see my results ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I can completely relate! It’s unhealthy to avoid anything negative. There’s a term called spiritual bypassing that describes this well. I think people who avoid anything negative are unwilling to be honest with themselves. There’s real life issues that people are going through and it’s harmful to tell people just to think positive. Some people are really suffering and by undermining people’s feelings, it could have a detrimental affect on their wellbeing. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, and so glad to hear that you will be using the journal prompts 💕☺️

      Like

  4. You raise important points here. I talked awhile back about how separating families of illegal immigrants was a mental health issue. Of course, that’s only one of many societal issues that can affect one’s mental health.

    How would you feel about my sharing this post on my blog at some point?

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Hi Ms. Ash! recently I have been reading your blogs and I was so inspired to write a story about a girl with inseurities on wattpad! I hope to read more from you! ^^

    Liked by 1 person

  6. So beautifully written. I actually just started a blog to educate others as well as myself on social issues and that’s how I plan to uplift my community. I completely agree that healing is a social justice issue. As a person of color, I’ve experienced hatred like no non person of color would experience. We need a lot more love and mental love as well.
    Thank you for your words. I think you might enjoy my blog, I’m just getting started but I hope that you find value in it.
    http://www.samemoon.com

    Like

  7. Hey I read your article, it’s true that we have a lot of issues in society already and that’s not enough people came up with race and gender biasness..
    I think what really matters is what’s right or wrong be it any country or religion… we all are humans first and we are not the only creature in this planet.. we must give everyone their space and learn to grow together than only we can solve issues which are just in the mind of people
    honestly skin color or gender of religion should not matter.. what matters is how pure your intentions are and how you can help each other grow..
    your article is what people need to know about how much they affect in other people’s mind and they might not even have idea about it..
    Good article (y)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for stopping by! It would be great for us to get to that point in humanity. For now I think we need to have honest conversations and truly address these injustices. 💜

      Like

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