Any scholarly attempt to describe groups should at least consider how members describe themselves. Our descriptions must be nuanced to account for exceptions, parallels, blends, and developmental processes. They also must pay attention to the history and ongoing effects of racism in the United States. As a white scholar, I have tried to use my own privilege to draw attention those effects, in support of efforts to dismantle them. If we cannot do this, then as Jan Nattier cautioned, “there will always be ‘two Buddhisms’ in America: Us and Them, however we define each other.”
From “Two Buddhisms, Three Buddhisms, and Racism” by Wakoh Shannon Hickey in the latest issue of the Journal of Global Buddhism.