• Peace and Reconciliation Dialog in Norway and the Balkans

Weekend Update

This weekend the boldest and bravest academy students joined us to learn about dialogue from one of the Nansen dialogue experts. We learned about dialogue exercises and the fundamentals of having good dialogue. Those principles are things such as challenging others’ and your own beliefs and working to understand what others are saying without judging them or being any kind of disrespectful.

The best part of this work has been watching it become immediately useful outside of our scheduled activities. We’ve enjoyed incredible conversation with the students here, and grown so close together through these few, short days.

We also were fortunate to here from a survivor of the Utoya Massacre. The young man (about our age) and his father came over to Lillehammer to talk with us and share their experiences. The father especially offered an interesting perspective as a psychiatrist, along with having such a confident, thoughtful presence. As powerful as the story was, we were all especially compelled by the inner strength and growth that both of them showed.

Today we got to visit the ski slope from the ’94 Olympics in Lillehammer. The view from the top of the hill was absolutely stunning with the sun shining brightly over the valley. We even got to watch some ski jumpers practice. Television simply does not do that sport justice. The incredible speed and height of even the most modest jumps are simply indescribable.

Looking Ahead

As time at Nansen wraps up, I regrettably will need to be more sparing with my updates. Daily posts have started seriously cutting into my sleep time (it’s currently 2am as I write this!), and I need to make sure I don’t get sick/too tired to actually learn and have the experiences that I came here to have. However as a consolation I have an exciting development in the works to keep you all in the know and give you a great insight of the experiences we’re having.

The sign at the entrance of Nansen.
Luther students during a dialogue session.