The Guardian – ‘My house, the barns, I lost everything’: the Ukrainian farmers devastated by war

Ivan Mishchenko in the ruins of his farmhouse. Like other farmers in Ukraine, his wheat cannot be harvested due to a shortage of fuel and after his harvester was destroyed by shelling. Photograph: Alessio Mamo/The Guardian – ©


I am Volker Schunck and live in Dresden, Germany. First I was an industrial clerk, then I studied theology. Through my engagement with Zen, I became aware of the Christian mysticism. Meanwhile, I go my own way. For me, faith is not a world-view but a being. It is important to me, not to live lost in thought but aware and intensely. For me, this also includes careful handling of other people. The NVC (Nonviolent Communication), which I learned during my training as a mediator, helps me with this.

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