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Healing Justice


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Table of Contents

Introduction Part I: Healing Justice and Whole Self-Care Chapter 1. Oppression, Trauma, and Healing Justice Chapter 2. Stress and the Self-Care Revolution Chapter 3. The Whole Self Chapter 4. A Skillful Path of Healing Justice Part II: Holistic Self-Care Practices and Skills Chapter 5. Connecting to the Body Chapter 6. Befriending the Mind-Heart Chapter 7. Rediscovering Spirit Chapter 8. In the Fabric of Community Chapter 9. Cultivating Connections between Person and Planet Part III: Where the Rubber Meets the Road Chapter 10. The Healing Justice Organization Chapter 11. Healing Justice on the Frontlines Chapter 12. Widening the Circle and Coming Home Notes Index

About the Author

Loretta Pyles, PhD, RYT-500, is Professor at the School of Social Welfare at the State University of New York at Albany. She is the co-editor of Holistic Engagement: Transformative Social Work Education in the 21st Century and author of Progressive Community Organizing: Reflective Practice in a Globalizing World (2nd ed.). She is a Kripalu certified yoga instructor as well as a practitioner and teacher of mindfulness.


"This is a desperately needed book that reminds us that true healing involves both self-care and social justice work to address the underlying conditions that create stress and inequities. Based on penetrating analysis clearly informed by her own practice, Pyles offers us a new interdisciplinary paradigm that invites us to think beyond the individualism and dualism endemic to Western culture. She skillfully interweaves both practical and theoretical tools to breakdown the false dichotomy between caring for ourselves and our world and provides both hope and specific means for preventing burnout and cultivating resilience." - John Chambers Christopher, PhD, Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Mind & Life Institute "Healing Justice is a much-needed contribution to the field. Dr. Pyles explicates the connection between contemplative practice and social change in an innovative and accessible way. In particular, she explores how capitalism and patriarchy infiltrate our psyches, often without us realizing it, and how contemplative practices can raise our awareness of this dynamic. This awareness can liberate us from the internalized oppression that so often obstructs effective social change work. A wonderful resource for activists, community organizers, and other change makers." - Maia Duerr, MA, author of Work That Matters: Create a Livelihood That Reflects Your Core Intention "Each semester, I spend more and more time talking with my stressed out, overworked, underpaid undergraduate students about care. Over time, this has extended into taking a minute or two to breathe and meditate at the beginning of class, reminding the students that there are no wrong ways to breathe. Sometimes we laugh. We feel embarrassed. I worry I might be fired for doing this. But as Loretta Pyles points out, it's okay to feel. It's okay to look inward as we look outward, seeing ourselves as a part of a much, much larger whole. There are only a few social welfare/social movement scholars in the country who take a look at the state of our world and practice, in all its glories and blind spots, in the ways Loretta Pyles does. Healing Justice is a revelation, pointing to social work practice at its best, integrating public and private, internal and external selves." - Benjamin Shepard, PhD, Professor, City Tech/City University of New York; author of Sustainable Urbanism "I enjoyed Loretta's book immensely and found I had a smile on my face most of the time I was reading it. Loretta draws nicely on information from social work, neuroscience, mindfulness, yoga, and her personal experience to provide evidence of what it means to be comfortable in our own bodies. The healing justice framework, case studies, and practice suggestions also model well the holistic approach she advocates, making it a useful book for students and practitioners alike. This is an important book for change makers to have on their bookshelf." - Jo Mensinga, PhD, MA, Lecturer at James Cook University, Cairns, Australia

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