November 10 – 12, 2017
We are extremely delighted to welcome to Kansas City and the Rime Center Lama Rod Owen, November 10th & 12th. Lama Rod will be teaching from his book Radical Dharma. Igniting a long-overdue dialogue about how the legacy of racial injustice and white supremacy plays out in society at large and Buddhist communities in particular, this urgent call to action outlines a new dharma that takes into account the ways that racism and privilege prevent our collective awakening. Bridging the world of spirit and activism, Radical Dharma urges a compassionate response to the systemic, state-sanctioned violence and oppression that has persisted against black people since the slave era. With national attention focused on the recent killings of unarmed black citizens and the response of the Black-centered liberation groups such as Black Lives Matter, Radical Dharma demonstrates how social transformation and personal, spiritual liberation must be articulated and inextricably linked.
In the book Radical Dharma Lama Rod as well as his co-authors Rev. Angel Kyodo Williams and Jasmine Syedullah represent a new voice in American Buddhism. Offering their own histories and experiences as illustrations of the types of challenges facing dharma practitioners and teachers who are different from those of the past five decades, they ask how teachings that transcend color, class, and caste are hindered by discrimination and the dynamics of power, shame, and ignorance. Their illuminating argument goes beyond a demand for the equality and inclusion of diverse populations to advancing a new dharma that deconstructs rather than amplifies systems of suffering and prepares us to weigh the shortcomings not only of our own minds but also of our communities. They forge a path toward reconciliation and self-liberation that rests on radical honesty, a common ground where we can drop our need for perfection and propriety and speak as souls. In a society where profit rules, people’s value is determined by the color of their skin, and many voices—including queer voices—are silenced, Radical Dharma recasts the concepts of engaged spirituality, social transformation, inclusiveness, and healing.
Considered one of the leaders of the next generation of Dharma teachers, Lama Rod Owens has a blend of formal Buddhist training and life experience that gives him a unique ability to understand, relate and engage with those around him in a way that’s spacious and sincere. His gentle, laid-back demeanor and willingness to bare his heart and soul makes others want to do the same. Even when seated in front of a room, he’s next to you, sharing his stories and struggles with an openness vulnerability and gentle humor that makes you genuinely feel good about who you are, with all your flaws and foibles, you’re lovable and deserving of happiness and joy. He invites you into the cross sections of his life as a Black, queer male, born and raised in the South, and heavily influenced by the church and its community.
Lama Rod Owens was officially recognized by the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism after receiving his teaching authorization from his root teacher the Venerable Lama Norlha Rinpoche (below) when he completed the traditional 3-year silent retreat program at Kagyu Thubten Chöling Monastery (KTC) outside of New York City. It was during this time that he dealt with years of past pain and trauma and found forgiveness and compassion for himself, what he views as a critical step before truly being able to help others.
Friday, November, 10
7:30 pm – 9 pm Introductory Teaching
Saturday, November, 11
10:00 a.m. – 12:00 pm
2:00 – 4:00 pm
Sunday, November 12
10:30 am – 12:00 pm Public Talk
$140 pre-registration, $160 at the door
These teachings are available to EVERYONE. We have “Suggested Fees,” however pay whatever you can afford. Everyone is welcome! It is our hope that some will pay more to cover those who can’t afford the usual fee. We simply want everyone to come this weekend for these wonderful teachings.
Register by mail: Download the Registration Form here, print, and mail or bring it to the Rime Center.
Register online: Constant Contact