We, the board of Body Wisdom, Inc., the stewards of the practice and philosophy of InterPlay, affirm and celebrate the beauty and dignity of all people. Our joy is in our common humanity, which we embrace as loving friends and neighbors throughout the world.
Body Wisdom recognizes that all human ancestry is African ancestry; that racial classifications by design divide the body of the whole, specifically exploiting Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC), our sense of self, culture and resources, while intentionally granting privilege, wealth, and power to people of European descent.
InterPlay is a movement rooted in the wisdom of the body—in its joy, play, integrity, authenticity, and trust. BIPOC ancestral wisdom is an integral part of InterPlay as a positive restoration and reunion of what was formerly taken and divided by inherited patterns of racism. BIPOC ancestral wisdom, a way of experiencing the tools and forms of InterPlay, is deeply devoted to a liberating togetherness for all.
By action, Body Wisdom is committed to inclusion, diversity, and equity in all aspects of its culture, leadership, and organizational development. We are committed to sewing cultural competency into the fabric of our teaching, training, communications, and outreach, each of which is essential for expressing our inherent belief in the wisdom of all bodies.
We also believe that because the InterPlay forms and philosophy draw out people’s embodied wisdom and personal stories, we bring more authenticity, integrity, emotional intelligence, groundedness, and a magic spark to the work of racial equity and racial transformation. We see this internal organizational and external programmatic work leading to deep authentic partnerships to create new ways of living and being.
This statement speaks to the very heart of InterPlay—our vision, our practice and our future.
This statement was generated and approved at the meeting of the Body Wisdom/InterPlay Board meeting that took place just before the 2017 Leaders Gathering in Racine, Wisconsin. The meeting was attended by these Board members, staff and other InterPlay leaders—Kelsey Blackwell, Marty Roddy, Susan Pudelek, Kamau Kitwana, Carolyn Renée, Katrina Browne, Coke Tani, Cynthia Winton-Henry, Barbara Toshalis, Sharie Bowman, Linda Schlabach Miller, Caroline Blackwell, Diane Rawlinson, Stephanie Pile, Masankho Banda, Agnotti Cowie, Phil Porter, Soyinka Rahim, Jennifer Denning, Randy Newswanger, Devi Wetterer, Celia Swanson, and Jeff Davis.
The statement rests on many years of conversation and action, including classes and events related to racial equity and transformation, establishing a Liaisons to Leaders of Color & International Leaders, helping catalyze a retreat for People of Color, workshops and discussions at Leaders Gatherings, the encouragement and support of leaders to take InterPlay into a wide variety of communities, scholarship support and broadening leadership development.
The statement will propel future activities such as the development of anti-racism training for all InterPlay leaders, editing leadership materials including the Core Elements Self-Study, encouraging the inclusion of color wisdom in teaching, leading and training, development of an Insight Group made up of people of color who can provide advice and support, and continued programming and form development around issues of racism, racial equity and transformation.