Tradition is a significant part of human life
Tradition is a significant part of human life. Separate places have different cultures. To understand cultural history can assist in having a proper understanding of different countries. Japan was the first country to have been substantially shaped by the Chinese culture; this is one of the reasons why the cultures are similar. Differences between them are the writings, language, areas, and morals. Knowing the differences and similarities can be very important, especially for business people. If people can learn more about the culture between different places, they will get the shared cultural heritage of East Asia.
In the Chinese culture, health is preserved via a balance between “yin” (cold) and “yang” (hot) forces. The absence of “chi” (energy) brings about the illness. The body is seen as a gift and respected through proper care. In attempts to regain the balance between “yin” and “yang” people may use acupuncture, acupressure, or moxibustion. Herbal remedies are also utilized, and folk healers may be conferred. Food may also be used to restore balance (Seidel, Ball, Dains, & Benedict, 1995, p. 46).
Chinese Name Card
While in China on a business trip the name card would need to be in a way that it is understood. The official language of 70 percent of the population is Mandarin (pu tong hua) and is spoken in northern China, such as in Beijing, and Shanghainese. Even though both are located in China, the two dialects cannot understand each other verbally. However, written language is the same throughout China and consist of over 50,000 characters, with 5000 familiar characters (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008). Business cards should be printed in English on one side and Chinese on the other. (“Chinses Culture & Etiquette for China,” n.d.).
Appointment with a Delegation of Health-Care
Punctuality is vital, being late is considered offensive, and disrespectful, meetings always begin on time.
Meeting During a Meal
Meeting are not generally conducted during meals. Meals are considered a means for unintended business references. If the business meeting is held during a meal, wait to be seated, as there is a seating protocol based on hierarchy. If the menu is not predetermined, expect an extensive discussion on what to order. Just as in business negotiations, everyone must agree before a decision is made. Stay agreeable, and do not suggest Western food. Do not discuss business during the meal. Numerous courses can be served during the meal, so try not to overeat at once. Premium delicacies such as scorpions, locusts, snakeskin, dog meat, and blood, may be served, sample a little of each course. The host will be offended if food is left untouched. Leaving an empty dish signifies that you were not given enough food and not touching your food is offensive as well, so leave some food on the plate (Todays Translations, n.d.).
Meaning of Life
Chinese interpret life regarding cycles and interrelationships, believing that life gets meaning from the context in which it is lived. Life cannot be split into simple parts and analyzed since the pieces are interconnected. When the Chinese address the meaning of life and attempt to rationalize it and what it means, they speak about what has happened to them, happened to others, and the importance and interrelatedness of those events (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008).
Chronic Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
COPD, an inflammatory lung disease that causes obstructed airflow into the lungs, is the third leading cause of death in China. It is widespread in China with 8.6 percent of the country’s adult population almost 100 million people suffering from the chronic lung disease (Tulane University, 2018). The significant risks of long-term exposure to internal greenhouse environments are enclosed spaces, high temperature, high humidity, and inhalation of antigens derived from protozoa, molds, insects, bacteria, and chemicals such as pesticides, fertilizers, and other organic materials (Liu et al., 2014).
Mr. Li’s Medical Care
Mr. Li had been suffering chest pain and having trouble breathing for two days
before he went to the hospital. Reasons for the delay is that the Chinese views on seeing a Western healthcare provider as a waste of time. They felt uncomfortable and frustrated with not being able to communicate. There are different cultural responses to health and illness. Often many will self-medicate when they think they know what is wrong and will use their traditional medicine or herbs; many do not have health insurance. The Chinese often view illness as a part of the life cycle and is caused by an imbalance (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008).
Mr. Li is a quiet man who did not complain of chest pain after being admitted to the cardiac intensive care unit. His wife who would argue with the physicians, nurses, and even her son over her husband’s care would cover Mr. Li until he would sweat, stating that he was cold. She would bring in hot herbal teas and would use traditional Chinese medicine treatment, and not follow dietary restrictions. Mrs. Li has taken over the care of Mr. Li which is customary, and he allows her this control and becomes passive in his care (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
When ordering medications for Mr. Li, healthcare providers have to be careful with the dosage. Chinese have problems with drug metabolism and sensitivity (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
Mrs. Li’s Attitude toward her Daughter-in-Law
In the Chinese family, the servants are sometimes treated better than the daughter-in-law who is to be submissive to the mother-in-law. The Chinese view of women is perpetuated to ensure male dominance in the society. The woman’s place and responsibility are to maintain a happy and efficient home life (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
Mr. Li’s blame on Western Food and Airplane Ride
The Chinese believe that food is vital in maintaining health. Foods are considered yin and yang and prevent sudden imbalances and indigestion. Western food is more greasy, processed, and there is more fast food, and sugary foods that the Chinese do not consume. Mr. Li may blame his airplane ride due to the altitude of the flight as well as the cabin being pressurized. He frequently medicates and exercises his arms to regain the balance between health and life (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008).
Death Handling of Remains, Mourning Rituals, and Bereavement
Death and mourning are centered on traditional ancestor worship, which is a sign of respect. Many Chinese do not have life insurance because they fear this is inviting death. Therefore, when Healthcare providers try to discuss Mr. Li’s prognosis with the family, but they refuse to address it, and Mr. Li’s passes away five days later. The Chinese fear death and since death is related to ghosts, they fear ghost because they have high power. They avoid reference to death and teach their children to avoid talking about it, the belief that the Chinese greet death with stoicism and fatalism is a myth (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008).
In China, the remains of the dead are customarily cremated because of the lack of wood for coffins and limited burial space. Ashes are placed in an urn and then in a vault. In a rural area, there may be a family plot that the body is buried. Death is viewed as a part of the natural life cycle, and that something delightful will happen after they die. Family members and friends come together to mourn, and the dead are honored by placing objects around the coffin that signifies the life of the deceased. During mourning, usually one to seven days, a person in grief does not go to work but uses this time for remembering the dead and planning the future. Mourners are recognized by the black armband and the white strips tied around their heads. Many Chinese believe that their spirits can never rest unless living descendants provide care for the grave and worship the memory of the dead, ashes or bones are returned to China for this reason. (Purnell & Paulanka, 2008).
The Japanese view of health stems from their religious beliefs connecting the mind, body, and spirit. The body is much respected and seen as holy and sacred. The Japanese believe that health is maintained through harmony with the world. Poor health may be caused through contact with raw elements such as corpses, blood, or skin disorders. Also, the mind and body share a togetherness that is said to be the equal of “harmonizing heaven and earth.” The Japanese also view disease as a force that is beyond of an individual’s control; this is something that may affect the way a person will see risk factors and ability to prevent illness (“Japanese culture,” n.d.).
Conflicts in an International Family
Marianne has been taking care of Mother Shimizu, who is confused and requires a considerable amount of responsibility. Now Marianne has hypertension, is on medication, and has high levels of stress. Ken had progressive glaucoma and lost a significant amount of peripheral vision. Marianne’s family has been urging her to have Mother Shimizu placed in a church-related life care community that her parents were in until they passed away in the U.S., but Ken sees this as unthinkable It is the son’s responsibility to care for his aging parents. Marianne is American, and Ken is Japanese, their family orientation is going to be different.
Ken teaches at a large Christian University and is the primary breadwinner of the household.
Late diagnosis of Ken’s Glaucoma
Poor health can be a shameful experience for the Japanese, and with Ken being the only one working he may have felt that he could not see a physician. Delivering bad news is difficult for the Japanese, so Ken avoided the issue instead of excepting something was wrong, he did not want to let his co-workers down or his family.
Placing Mother Shimizu in a Long Term Facility
If the Shimizu’s were to place Mother Shimizu into an American nursing home near Marianne’s family, the practical thing to do would be for Ken and Marianne to move to the United States.
Dietary Factors causing Marianne’s Hypertension
Many of the meals of the Japanese culture consist of the high content of sodium. Typical foods include soy-based soups, eggs, pickles, fish, vegetables, fruits, and rice.
Ken being Countercultural
While most Japanese does not identify themselves in one religion, Ken is a Methodist missionary, instead of Shinto and Buddhist.
Marianne’s Social Pressures
Marianne being from the United States, having a college education, and serving on numerous church-related positions, and being a Methodist missionary are some things that may be looked down upon in Japan. She now takes care of Mother Shimizu, does not work outside the home, and manages the day to day household matters. She continues to travel home to see her family, even though in feudal Japan the bride has little contact with her family after marriage.
Pressures Ken will Face
Ken is the primary money maker in the family, with his eyesight being compromised, he will not be able to work and provide for his family. Marianne will have to care for him when it gets to the point he is unable to work, and his eye-sight fails more. The pressure to admit that everything is not fine will be difficult for Ken. In Japan, many avoid the issue instead of exposing the negative.
Fertility and Mortality Rates
The conception of how many children are being born into the populace during a particular time is the fertility rate. These statistics can be watched to gauge levels of reproduction within a population over time. In the United States, for women age 15 to 44, there were 61.5 births per 1,000 women ending the first quarter of 2017. The United States has a higher infant death rate than another comparably wealthy country, with 32.7 deaths per 100,000 births. The United States also has a high death rate for children under five (Braiker, n.d.) In Japan, there were 976,979 babies born in 2016. Having the lowest mortality rate of 1 out of every 1,111 births, Japan is considered the safest place in the world to have a baby (“Safest place,” 2018).
In Japan, prolonged eye contact is thought of as being rude, leads to awkwardness, and can be construed as a sign of aggression. When speaking to or approaching a Japanese individual, make brief eye contact to signal the individual, but then maintain appropriate eye level, such as the individual’s neck (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
Sensitivity to Certain Medications
Due to the physical stature of the Japanese and racially linked genetic differences in drug metabolism they are more sensitive to certain medications, especially mephenytoin and related medications, beta blockers, psychotropic drugs, and alcohol. Some may require lower doses of benzodiazepines, neuroleptics, and due to a higher metabolic rate of acetylate substances, i.e., tranquilizer, tuberculosis medications, and some cardiovascular medicines, may require higher doses. Opiates are less active but have greater gastrointestinal side effects (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
Calcium Needs of the Japanese
Various Japanese are lactose intolerant and have trouble digesting milk. Therefore, calcium is obtained through food such as tofu, seaweed, and small unboned fish (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
Japanese culture has been dramatically guided by the Chinese culture. However, the two countries are as diverse from one another as any two adjacent countries. Like all old cultures, many traditions are intertwined around family and hierarchy that have been nurtured over several centuries. The gender positions were highly distinguished, but now both cultures follow a patriarchal order of inheritance, the eldest male being the head of the family. In both cultures, extended families are representative of three or four generations living together.
Japanese are more spiritual and follow both Buddhism and Shinto faiths. In China, the formal faiths consist of Buddhism, Protestantism, Taoism, Islam, and Catholicism; prayer is a source of comfort (Purnell ; Paulanka, 2008).
There is high importance on harmony in the Japanese culture. Even in conversation with each other, the Japanese remain polite. In Japan arguments in public, shouting, or other forms of unpoliteness is unlikely. In comparison, China with the level of politeness is less frequent and portrays the likeness of a typical advancing country, Honor and hard work are two essential traits of the Japanese, where the Chinese may find employment more difficult to find and depend on family resources until financial security can be established.