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Steps Toward Justice

The world we humans have created is unfair, and yet we have also seeded within our societies the paraphernalia and parameters of justice. It would seem that we have attempted to move beyond nature and the natural world—a world in which fairness is not a relevant concept. No judge and no judgment, only predator and prey within a complex set of relationships that make up life and living. 

Yet within our created world, justice is deemed a virtue. We strive to be fair and argue over concepts of fairness. Justice in practice is a challenge, however, to the relationships in which we find ourselves and to many of the systems we hold dear. As just one practical example, the realm of public education brings to light myriad instances of the struggles for justice because of inequities in how school systems are funded, with students’ race and socio-economic status a key indicator of whether they receive a quality education.

While the power structures of various injustices are institutionalized through our cultural mores, laws, and beliefs, in spiritual terms they are reinforced by ego-identified consciousness. Whether unconscious, directed inward, or pointed toward others, the mandates guiding our attempts toward justice therefore unfortunately all too often make for unhealthy living. 

If one seeks justice or cares about justice in practice, then it is imperative to do what’s necessary to defy the limitations that are binding one to injustice. In other words, whatever keeps you from truth must be defied. With this, walking the path of Tantra is a defiant act because Tantra is designed to take the aspirant to new edges of awareness and in this renders one increasingly naked. Put another way, by doing the work necessary to unbind us from internalized oppressions—to release our light into the world—we take a road toward greater manifestations of justice. 

Standing in one’s nakedness is hard to do and harder to sustain. It’s hard because this route isn’t ultimately about the one doing the work. While on this path we will find a more wrenchingly open existence that will, yes, be filled with pain that is deeply personal, we can choose to endure it for the sake of connection to others. That ability to constantly choose will be all about us. But more importantly, the indelible impressions of connection to life will make the losing of self the seed of something far greater. 

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Chandra Alexandre is a Tantric Bhairavi, a priestess in the tradition of Kali who received her lineage through initiation in India. Founding director of SHARANYA, a Devi Mandir (Goddess Temple) dedicated to social justice through engaged spirituality, she resides in San Francisco with her daughter, husband, and kaula (spiritual family) offering puja, teachings and spiritual guidance.


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