Restorative Practices are a living and organic community dialog and spiritual conversation process that aim to restore connection, power sharing, consciously co-create clarity and mutual understanding, improve and repair relationships between people and communities to both prevent harm and heal through empathy and honesty after harm has occurred.
The purpose of Restorative Practices are to build healthy communities, increase social capital, decrease crime and life-alienating and violent behavior, repair harm and restore broken relationships. They are considered part of the Restorative Justice Movement which builds collaborative and dialog within traditional protective and punitive use of force justice systems (such as schools, courts, police, military, mental hospitals, etc) which are held and nested within the Laws of Mother Nature justice system, the laws of karma (you get what you do), and the Universal Justice System of the Milky Way Galaxy and the Planetary Justice Systems.
Restorative Practices are both ancient and newly emerging.
Examples of Restorative Practices from Native America include Dine' Hogan Dialogs, Pomo Round Dances, Port Sklallam Cedar Sweat Lodges, Pow Wows, Lakota Inipi Sweat Lodge, Homblecha, and Sun Dance Ceremonies and Talking Stick Circles where people meet to honor Mother Earth and pray for community balance, peace, harmony, healing, and beauty, and discuss harms that need prayer, love, and action.
There are over 760 Native American tribes in the border engulfing these Souls and the traditional Mother Earth stewardship lands they have served since time immemorial, called the United States of America. All of these tribes each have their own version of dialog and circle based Restorative Practices.
Examples of Restorative Practices from India are Self Help Groups, Self Reliant Groups, Kirtan, Bhajans, Satsangs, Pravarchak, Puja, Patha, Homa Yajna, Japa, Panchayats, Karma Yoga, circle dances, Sangeeta, and Seva.
Examples of newly emerging Restorative Practices in the modern Restorative Justice Movement are...
- the work of Lyla June and the 4-day Dialog, Poetry, Music, and Arts Ceremony called the ReGeneration Festival,
- the work of Circling Europe
- the work of L'aura Joy and Restorative Auroville in Tamil Nadu, India.
- the work of Jason Stewart and Building Restorative Systems,
- the work of Rose Gordon the Taos County Juvenile Justice Board,
- the work of Fania Davis and Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth,
- the work of Rita Alfred from the Restorative Justice Training Institute,
- the work of Dominic Barter and Restorative Circles which came out of shanty town favelas of Brazil,
- the circle and initiation work of the ManKind Project New Warriors,
- the work of International Institute of Restorative Practices,
- the work of Molly Rowan Leach and Restorative Justice on the Rise
- the work of Kay Pranis,
- the work of Howard Zehr, "A Grandfather of Restorative Justice",
- the transformative justice work of Generation Five to end child sexual abuse in 5 generations,
- the transformative justice and prison mindfulness work of Fleet Maul
- the work of Bethany Casarjian and Lion Heart
- the circle and Unitive Justice work of Sylvia Clute,
- the Conflict 180 work of Elaine Shunpin and Mikhail Lyubansky,
- the work of Kit Miller of the MK Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence and Restorative Rochester,
- the Restorative System building work of Karl Steyaert and Find Flow,
- the work of Tod Kington the Shawnee Conflict Center,
- the work of John Lash and the Georgia Conflict Center,
- the work of Kathleen MacFerran and Bainbridge Island Restorative Circles,
- the work of Sherry McCreedy and Yuj,
- the work of Edwin Rutsch and Restorative Empathy Circles and the Center for Building a Culture of Empathy,
- etc, etc, etc ad infinitum...