Meditation in Jail Making Big Difference

Think you need a special chair or a comfy setting to meditate? Think again. Inmates in LA County Men's Central jail are meditating in their cells with the help of a weekly course given by a Buddhist chaplain -- and it's making a big-time difference.

According to this great story in the LA Times, meditation has made a tremendous difference in the lives of these men -- many of whom are locked up for violent crimes. Inmates who've participated talk of greater self-control, the ability to deal with conflict better, and "escape the jail's constant clamor." 

Gary Janka, the Buddhist chaplain who runs the program, doesn't see the irony either and says, "What a perfect place... That's what we have going for us here, everyone is suffering."

If mediation is making such a difference in prison, imagine what it could do in schools? Goldie Hawn is working on a school meditation program in the UK and David Lynch's foundation is "dedicated to providing students with the opportunity to learn how to meditate." Hopefully we're not that far away from finding out.

You can read the entire story at the LA Times here.

image via Irfan Khan/LA Times

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