In Mind you are Free.
The great philosopher Plato once said, "One cannot make a slave of a free person, for a free person is free even in a prison."
I have this tatooed on the inside of my right forearm to always remind me that I may be doing a life sentence (There is no life with parole in the state of South Dakota) in a state where life actually means life, but I am still free in my mind.
I have been doing meditation for years and am also the leader of the Jameson Buddhist Group. I have try to relate to others all the benefits of meditation, and understanding.
My body my be in prison, but my mind is free when I practice my meditation on the green grass in the rec yard, with the cool breeze on my skin, the sunlight on my face, and the sound of life all around me.
Life is what we make it no matter where we are. I tell people that the meaning of life is that it is to be lived. You should take every moment of life for what it is, because you never know when it will end. Just because your in prison, doesn't
1 mean your life is over. It is up to them to choose how they will live their lives.
It is funny how I hear some prisoners complain about doing a few years and having to be locked up for a little while, then they ask me how long I have. They are suprised that a quiet Zen Buddhist like myself is doing life for murder. They usually apologize for complaining over doing such a short time, I tell them everyone makes mistakes.
Prisoners sometimes ask me how can I stand doing a life sentence, never ever getting out. I tell them life is what you make it and that people need to use their minds, meditation also helps. They way I look at it, it could always be worse then it is.
I enjoy teaching at the Jameson Buddhist Group and trying to help others who are doing their time to use meditation to open their minds and communicate with people to live a peaceful, happy life. That is part of my time, the other is meditation and promoting understand and communication.
Plato was right, "One cannot make a slave of a free person, for a free person is free even in a prison." In my mind I will always be free. written by Shane Bell
2 Shane Bell
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