“If you’re invested in security and certainty,
you are on the wrong planet.” 
– Pema Chödrön


F*#k Coping – Sister Mary Media and Sister Merry Peter

Nov 10, 2019

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Has mindfulness become a numbing agent instead of a tool to sharpen our awareness?

In this highly engaging call to action, two Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence explore how our capitalist society has co-opted mindfulness and commodified it. In this way, it has become a means to distract individuals from distressing societal problems that demand our attention.

They explore:

  • The fascinating history of SPI, its roots in the Radical Faeries, and its formation in response to Harry Hay’s theory of Queer Consciousness.
  • The foundational role of mindfulness and meditation in SPI’s quest “to promulgate universal joy and to expiate stigmatic guilt” and bring liberation to those at the margins.
  • The trap of practicing in isolation and believing it is our individual responsibility to internally cope with the suffering caused by the extractive nature of society.
  • Our practice of mindfulness can be social and build community rather than foster isolation.
  • When situated in context as just one of the Eightfold Path, mindfulness can sharpen our awareness and enable us to actively make a difference in the world.

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence are devoted to community service, ministry and outreach to those on the edges, and to promoting human rights, respect for diversity, and spiritual enlightenment.
Sister Mary Media, SPI, a long-time member of GBF, is one of the original Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence from the Order’s founding in 1979 where she currently serves as Mistress of Grants. She speaks frequently about the group’s history and her vocation as a secular nun.
Sister Merry Peter, SPI, is a poet, writer, and former sex-worker who found her vocation through the Radical Faeries in 1987. Her life-long activism focuses on HIV-AIDS, queer youth, civil rights and social justice. Her efforts include partnerships to provide street-level health services to sex workers, legal aid for LGBTQ refugees and resistance to police violence.