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Starting the Conversation: Being Close to Blackness

October 21, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

Sunday, October 21st at 7 pm

Starting the Conversation: Being Close to Blackness

Being close to blackness is the deepest, most personal aspect of working with systematic racism. Svadhyaya is the yogic practice of self-study and self-reflection.  Through self-reflection we can identify and root out our habits, biases, and histories that are holding us back from being close to others. Through self-transformation, we can transform the world around us.

Many white-identified folks may not consider themselves racist and yet may have hidden or underlying biases that are creating a barrier between themselves and black people in their community. These barriers, prevent us from really truly seeing blackness, from being close to blackness, and from advocating for true change. Aaron Johnson will facilitate this group, helping white-identified folks to reflect and discover personal, community, and cultural barriers particularly as they effect our yoga communities. What is preventing black people from participating in highly white-dominated yoga spaces, no matter how well-meaning the community is?

Start the conversation with us. Work to understand and include blackness as part of your personal work, your yogic journey and your commitment to dismantle systemic racism in your community and beyond.

Aaron is well-known in the East Bay, working closely with Jennie Pearl and Porsha Breed as part of Holistic Resistance.  He regularly facilitates meetings on “Getting Close to Blackness” for Wake Up and the teachers at Adeline Yoga.

This workshop is for any student or teacher of yoga who wants to cultivate awareness and develop the courage to act.  This conversation will be geared towards white identified people, AND ALL ARE WELCOME.  No experience needed.

Sliding Scale

$10 – 25

Please pre-register.  You are welcome to pay $25 online, or simply register and pay the sliding scale at the door.

All are encouraged to attend regardless of ability to pay.

Need help registering?  Email us directly to


About Aaron Johnson

I am an earth builder, a teacher of closeness, and an activist. I graduated from the California Institute of the Arts in 2007 with a Bachelors of Fine Arts. I use intimacy to dismantle racism; I have made a lifelong commitment to use the skills I possess to end racism. The tools I frequently use for that end are speaking, teaching, closeness to blackness, and minimalism. Deep connection is one of the most powerful tools one can use in dismantling racism.

My goal is to help white people slow down their reality enough to see blackness, primarily through the use of deep questions. I also use questions as a lens that white people can use to look at themselves and see how their own wounds and trauma from racism are stopping them from being close to black people. I am a firm believer that if you cannot get close to black people, you cannot be a true advocate for them. Being close to blackness is the revolution. Go to and for more information.


October 21, 2018
7:00 pm - 8:30 pm


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Regular Price
$10-$25 sliding scale