Inspired by the Engaged Buddhism movement started by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh in 1964, it is my intention to practice Engaged Adoption Reform Advocacy. I have witnessed, and been a part of, many disagreements surrounding adoption reform. What I have realized is that many are fearful of how things might change should the current practices of adoption change.

As the truth and empowerment of everyone involved in adoption practices are not things that should be feared, I am committed to relieving the suffering caused by what I view to be inequitable practices that are not holistically compassionate. Such practices provide a rather weak foundation for an adoption industry that claims to be working in the best interests of children. What many seem to ignore or forget is that adopted children eventually become independent adults and that we should be considered as contributing members of our own adoptions.

Again, I do wish to recognize the myriad of reasons people have to be fearful of adoption practices not remaining as they do now. I’m willing to listen and consider these reasons while also working to alleviate the resulting fear. It concerns me a great deal that so many people are afraid of adoption practices that are more transparent and equitable. It also concerns me that so many people use this fear to rationalize that it is acceptable to engage in certain questionable practices when it comes to adoption. I want to learn more about why people feel this way. And I want assuage their fears and show them how it is possible for adoption to be compassionate, equitable and focused on assisting children who are truly in need.

Let’s engage and participate in productive, purposeful dialogue focused on the issues surrounding global adoption practices. Please consider joining me. Share in the dialogue.Watercolor Tree Email Small 132 x 160“Aware that lack of communication always brings separation and suffering, we are committed to training ourselves in the practice of compassionate listening and loving speech. We will learn to listen deeply without judging or reacting and refrain from uttering words that can create discord or cause the community to break. We will make every effort to keep communications open and to reconcile and resolve all conflicts, however small.”

~Thich Nhat Hanh, Interbeing: 14 Guidelines for Engaged Buddhism