Florida Prison Retreats
Post from KC Walpole:
I look at the photos from prison retreats we have had over the last decade from Coleman, Lawtey, Lowell and Gadsden and cannot help but think there must have been over 1,000 men and women that have sat with us in these federal and state prisons. Above is the group from Lowell CI on the 8th MBSR retreat that ended on the 8th of December. There would have been more in the photos except for the fact they shipped a bunch out that morning for other prisons. no way are all of these women or anyone else going to get everything we tried to teach but all will get some piece of the pie and that is better than none. you can not sit for five days and not meet yourself at some point.
What you don’t see in the retreat photos that have been going on for the last decade is the echo of awareness that is passed on to the families and friends of the faces you are looking at in the photos. That will cascade down through time long after we are dead and our memories are nothing but 0s and Is in some humongous database. The process is made possible by each of us sitting and as a group we are able to reach out and into holes where despair and despondency are the order of the day. What we can not reach, others will reach based on the example, models and precedence we have created over the last decade.
To be in a room where most have not sat for an hour at a time, and watch 70 or so first time sitters be still and quiet is a profoundly moving experience. This is an experience I have no ability to share because words fail me. Know that I do wish each and everyone of you well. do good and take care. KC Walpole Gateless Gate, Gainesville, Florida