Forgiveness

On Palm Sunday an ISIS attack on two Coptic Churches in Egypt, killed 45 worshippers. Two weeks later, the Egyptian television aired an interview with the widow of a guard of St. Mark's Cathedral in Alexandria who was murdered in the suicide bombing.

She left the celebrity TV host speechless by expressing and extending forgiveness towards the suicide bomber. Christianity Today wrote a great article about it. (CT Article and Video). It gives some excellent insights in how forgiveness plays out in a society where Honor/Shame is the primary worldview driver and Power/Fear is a significant contributor to people’s worldview.

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Countercultural Living

My wife and I were visiting family and got a question about how we live counterculturally in Southern California (SoCal). They knew we’ve been through a rough time adjusting to life in SoCal after 9 years in the Arab world. I couldn't readily answer the question from my in-laws, but it got me thinking about the concept of living counterculturally.

What is living counterculturally?

"Counterculture" is a sociological term that refers to a cultural group or subculture whose values and norms of behavior run counter to those of the region's social mainstream; it can be considered the cultural equivalent of political opposition. (boundless.com)

Living counterculturally could be understood as living in a way that demonstrates your own beliefs, values and norms of behavior that are different from the society around you. Or it could be defying the values of the society around you that you feel are too restrictive. For most Christians, living counterculturally has the connotation of displaying their faith in a non-Christian society.

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Inter-Cultural Intelligence and Faith

What is the place of my faith when looking at worldviews? Why is it important to look at worldviews from a faith-based perspective?

Roland Muller in his book The Messenger, The Message and the Community (2013) established a simple and profound rule. For a worldview to be truly called a worldview it must explain why people think the way they think, speak the way they speak and act the way they act, and it must also explain why people who are from different cultures but adhere to the same philosophy, faith or religion think, speak and act differently (See: What are the Three Colors of Worldview?)

Why does a typical Christian from the Midwest of the USA behave different from say a Christian from South-East Asia?

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Inter-Cultural Intelligence and Race

About a month ago I was talking with a friend and Intercultural facilitator in Atlanta. While discussing the definition of culture, the topic of race came up and how race fits into the culture paradigm.

I am white, a recent immigrant to the USA and live in the suburbs of San Diego in a city that is predominantly white and Hispanic. Because of that, the whole racial tension between Caucasian and African Americans is not so much in my face. I’m an expert in intercultural interactions, but obviously not in inter-racial interactions.

The few African Americans friends and neighbors that I do have, do feel the tension and it is in their face. The tension between black and white is a real problem that needs a real solution.

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Inter-Cultural Intelligence and Education

Our societies have become increasingly multi-cultural with the influx of immigrants, refugees and expatriates from so many countries. This means that our classrooms are also becoming more and more multi-cultural.

It’s a welcome diversity, but it also brings its challenges to classroom dynamics and making sure that every student learns at his/her best abilities.

As educators, we do our best to understand our students (their learning styles, academic abilities, personality, etc), and we try our best to address these in our curriculum and delivery of the curriculum.

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What are the Three Colors of Worldview?

Culture is like an iceberg and our worldview is the bottom layer of the iceberg and influences everything that sits on top of it. Many times without us being aware of it! A good understanding of your own worldview and what drives you as well as a good understanding of the other person’s worldview and what drives him/her is the starting point and foundation of intercultural understanding and effective intercultural interaction.

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What is ICI and how does n-Culture use it?

Inter-Cultural Intelligence enables individuals to understand their own cultural worldview and how it impacts their behaviors, expectations and relationships with others. It helps them assess and understand the cultural drivers of the other person and enables them to adapt their behavior and communication to bring about more effective and winsome interactions.

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