Joyful Liberation Collective is a 501c3 mindfulness organization that creates healing spaces for historically excluded communities and social justice education for all.
Through embodied practice and compassionate conversations, we are a community of mindful changemakers moving towards personal and collective liberation. We believe that our breath can transform and free all of us — in this moment and beyond.
Our Founding Teachers
Joyful Liberation Collective was founded by a team of mindfulness teachers who felt displaced and disempowered within the wellness industry — and the world. Founded in India, raised on Lenape land (NYC) and now breathing online, this passion project grew into a community. BIPOC-and-Queer-led, our Founding Teachers saw the need to create spaces where people could explore their sense of belonging and wholeness within themselves and the world. Read more about Joyful Liberation Collective’s founding story.
The Joyful Liberation Collective teacher network spans across the country with teachers coming from many backgrounds — Black, API, Latinx, white, straight, queer, fat, skinny, she, he, they. It’s with this diverse insight that we have developed a wide range of mindfulness programs that explore the intersections within ourselves and the world.
Joyful Liberation Collective's Core Practices
At Joyful Liberation Collective, we have created and developed six core practices that live and breathe at the intersection of mindfulness and social justice. programming is developed with much care to uphold these practices in all that we do.
Embodying social justice is the active practice of everyday equity through unbiased compassion towards others, deep dismantling of the systems we participate in and listening to our bodies.
Understanding our social location is the active practice of turning outwards to cultivate awareness around our unique positionality, power and privilege; looking deeply at the biases we carry; and seeing the interdependent nature of our world.
Embracing your authentic self is the active practice of turning inwards to fight against the narrative that your expression is not good enough and to honor all the identities we hold by showing up in spaces as we are (as safety allows).
Honoring our ancestors and reclaiming spiritual traditions is the active racial justice practice of not forgetting our own personal history or the land in which we occupy; and to share existing rituals and practices through an accessible and inclusive lens.
Radical rest is the active practice of pushing against the capitalist world we were born into and fighting the ingrained compulsion to dehumanize ourselves through work.
Joy is Liberation is the understanding that joy is attainable and accessible to us in the present moment and lives within us and is also the radical practice of alchemizing our suffering into joy and light.
Kim Thai (she/her) is an Emmy-award-winning producer; writer, social justice advocate and mindfulness teacher. She founded Joyful Liberation Collective because she was seeking a community where she could be her most authentic self in her healing journey. As a queer Asian woman and a proud kid of Vietnamese refugees, she shares Buddhist teachings to help people find the freedom and power that lives within themselves. She has personally experienced how our breath can change the way we see and show up in the world and believes deeply that equity is possible and can be achieved if we start reflecting and taking action now.
Linda Lopes (she/her) is a yoga, meditation, and Reiki practitioner based in Brooklyn, New York serving youth and adults. She discovered her mat a decade ago through a mentor, who she always refers to as the catalyst for change in her life. While in search of happiness, joy, and love; she soon realized that what she and most of us long for can be found within. As a Founding Teacher at Joyful Liberation Collective, she actively creates and holds spaces for BIPOC to come together and heal. She strongly believes that it is in power of brave, authentic, trusting, and loving communities that we can create change in the world.
Tisha Samuels (she/her) is a Founding Teacher of Joyful Liberation Collective. She is a a yoga and ayurveda student and teacher in Pittsburgh, PA (originally Iroquios, Lenape and Shawnee land). She strives to create space for students to learn and use mindfulness tools to bring them back to their highest and truest selves and to discover how that affects and connects them with the world around them. Becoming a part of Joyful Liberation Collective was a necessity, not a decision. With so much hatred and misunderstanding built within the systems that we live, it is a priority to Tisha to be part of the movement towards collective change. It is true dharma to participate in an organization that is centered around mindful action.
Felipe Gonzalez (he/him) is a certified 500 ERYT, Katonah Yoga teacher, and Founding Teacher at Joyful Liberation Collective. Based in Santa Monica, California (Tongva land) he has spent the last six years learning, unlearning, and exploring the intersections of yoga, mindfulness, and social justice. His mission is to rewrite the narrative around wellness and healing. He believes that Yoga is a practice of activism. By allowing oneself to engage in practices and techniques of self awareness, self regulation, and self care, it awakens the desire to make the world a better place than you found it.
Kristina Lopez (she/they) is a community builder dedicated to creating holistic change in the world. Her practice is informed by an intersectional lens dedicated to collective liberation. She intertwines Buddhist philosophy with contemporary theories of anti-racism, anti-capitalism, and sex positivity in her work as an artist, meditation guide, and community deathcare advocate. She is a second-generation Caribbean American born and raised on Lenape land in NYC. As a Founding Teacher with Joyful Liberation Collective, she believes that mindfulness and activism are both necessary on our paths to freedom.
Meesha Sharma (they/she) Hi! My name is Vuzmal Sharma, but most folks call me Meesha. My name Vuzmal means lightning in Kashmiri, the land of my maternal lineage. Meesha is a pet name I was given at birth. Sharma comes from my Punjabi father’s lineage. I am the first of my family to be born outside of South Asia. I believe all people are ever-evolving, shape-shifting multi-dimensional entities, so it’s hard to encapsulate who I am in a few sentences. However, the key words that come to mind right now are: writer, disruptor, yoga sadhaka and guide, community space holder, queer trans lover, and creatrix. My passion lies in alchemizing our sacred and inherent creative energy with the indigenous medicine of yoga to dismantle harmful systems within and without, while co-weaving new ways of being with my peers and allies. I am the founder of a virtual community called Alchemystic Studio (www.alchemysticstudio.com) where we come together to do the work of healing and change-making in a joyful and supportive way. It is an honor to be a part of this incredible collective. May we all have access to liberation. IG: @alchemystic_studio
Daniel Sannito (they/them/theirs) moves through this world as a trans, non-binary educator, writer, and facilitator of yoga asana and meditation. Daniel shares offerings inspired by over ten years of personal practice and study in various traditions and lineages. They are a founding collaborator of the Trans Yoga Project, a writer and consultant with Chopra, and a collaborating teacher with Love Your Brain. They dedicate their voice to creating affirming space for all humans to explore and discover connection with their own hearts in the ways that serve them best. Stay connected with Daniel on Instagram: @danielsannito_ or visit their website at danielsannito.com to learn more about them and their offerings.
Crow Miller (he/him) is an Artist, Healer, and Spiritual Teacher, his love for the Arts and for Creator has led him down the path of spirituality and service. As an American born person of mixed ancestry & as a Two- Spirit individual Crow embodies many intersections of wisdom and personal power. At the age of 21 he began his first yoga teacher training and since then he has continued his personal healing journey and learning from many teachers around the world. Crow has been blessed to learn from many elders of ancient wisdom traditions, and has dedicated years to weaving these teachings into his service in a way that honors his personal lineage and initiatory lineages. Crow has learned to heal himself from deep trauma, loss of family members, personal and collective wounds, transition from female to trans masculine and emerge into the world sharing all of the gifts that those experiences have given him. Crow has shape shifted and transformed many times in his 35 years of life, and that is why the Crow walks with and guides him in his path of service. His work primarily focuses on uplifting the LGBTQIA2S+ community as well as BIPOC and neurodivergent communities, but his work and heart extends to the world community. Learn more about Crow here: www.crowwalk.com.
We’re so lucky to be supported by an incredible, compassionate board.
Kerri-Ann Wright (she/her)
Liz Getman (she/her)
Jessie Anne Zayas (she/her)
Abeer Naqvi (she/her)
Sara Friedman (she/her)
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At Joyful Liberation Collective, we teach you how to take your practice and turn it into actionable mindfulness. Your financial contribution is not just a donation. It supports our community. It supports your practice. And it supports the world around us. Please consider making a contribution and adding us to any corporate giving program. Our EIN number is 87-1472371. All donations are tax-deductible.