25 September 2009
It has taken awhile but I’m finally getting my feet back nestled into the earth of living back in the USA. When I went to China, the very helpful book The Expert Expatriate talked about how repatriation was harder for expats, in some ways, than moving to a new culture in the first place. This is very surprising. You think you’re coming "home" so that everything will be easy, but it’s not. You have changed. It’s one thing to know intellectually that this will be challenging, something entirely different to live through it!
Well, when I came back I knew there would be challenges, and there would also be opportunity to start a new life. I decided to take some time, as much as possible anyway, and to choose just one thing to focus on. I wanted to choose the one thing I am most passionate about, to focus on that and to feel that my life and my work count for something good.
Some months ago, perhaps a year ago, I decided that my next primary focus in life would be Peacemaking. I’ve written a lot on this blog about peace, nonviolence, ethics. But this blog is really about China and cross cultural things. In June, I started a new blog devoted strictly to Peacemaking. I named that blog "Peaceworks" for two reasons. One, because I am working for peace. But two, because peace does work. Here’s a link to that blog:
But that’s not all. I believe that peace among nations begins with peacemaking at home. One thing I can do, using skills I already have, is to be a peacemaker among people who are experiencing conflict. A concrete application of that is through a new field called Alternative Dispute Resolution (or ADR). One of the blogs you can look at to learn more about this field is Mediate.com
I’ve been volunteering as a mediator for a few months, gathering experience, and now I’m opening my own mediation practice. I named my business Just Mediation, for two reasons. For one thing, there is the link to Justice. Mediation is a way for people in disputes to find a fair and just way to resolve that dispute. Secondly, I want to convey the idea that mediation is what I do. It’s not a sideline to a law practice. I am a peacemaker, not a litigator.
With all that said, here is my new web sit. Take a look! And please, do me a favor …. both blogs have places where you can leave comments. Please leave me a comment and tell me what you think! If you think I should change something, let me know that, too. Does the page load too slow, or contain something that offends you? I need to know these things because you are the only people who will tell me. And also, dear readers in China, does your country or city have anything like mediation as a way of resolving disputes? I never saw it or heard about it while I was there, but I recently ran across an article called "Mediation in China". Unfortunately I forgot to bookmark it, but I will try to find it and post it soon.
Thank you very much for reading and following my blog! Don’t forget to leave me a comment! 🙂