Prisoners For Peace

The Groenpunt Correctional Services Witnessed a radical transformation of 78 high maximum inmates who underwent the five day IAHV Prison Program . Through the very effective Sudharshan Kriya (deep rhythmic breathing) negative emotions of anger , guilt , mistrust which translates into violence, aggression and crime, gently receded as deep rooted stresses were released from the system thus paving the mind for a more relaxed, calmer and peaceful state.

As they became accustomed to the daily routine of yoga and the breathing techniques , their energy levels started to show significant improvement . A relationship of trust was established and a more openness began to develop with a optimistic dialogue between us . The main theme being how to remain happy in spite of the current status quo , how to prevent a life of crime , how to maintain a peaceful and successful state of being on the inside and out.

Inspite the challenges of having to attend court hearings and going to the infirmary which often prevent inmates from attending our courses conservatively , this course had its lowest drop out rate. This was evident enough of their conviction to improve themselves and also bore witness to the highest number of repeaters . Some repeated this course for the firth time, which is evident in itself to the efficacy of this course.

By the fifth day the minds were well settled , the mindsets more positive and optimistic and a more cooperative behavior was evident.

They reported the following :

  • Feeling very happy after the course , stress released, relaxed and peaceful. They said with this feeling, feelings of anger and violence can not exist .
  • Many felt their anger had reduced
  • Seventy four inmates said their sleep improved significantly, from having insomnia to having uninterrupted sleep
  • Majority reported healing experiences in this course (one person who suffers from sinuses and is chronic medication dependent after the Kriya he did not require and medication as the sinuses were fully opened.
  • Addictions such as smoking reduced
  • Stomach ailments disappeared
  • Chronic headaches subsided
  • Many felt relief from guilt and were able to forgive themselves and ask for forgiveness
  • Fear reduced and hope induced
  • Improved behaviours , they wilfully walk away from flights
  • Influencing gangs in a positive way
  • Feeling of remorse and not wanting to go back to a life of crime and violence, but rather towards a more stable, peaceful family life

Since the implementation of our program the officials have reported there has been no gang violence, not a single fight in the last 6 months at this facility.

On how to break the cycle of crime and violence, they gave the following feedback:

  • Few reported having been arrested for reoffending. Re-offense occurs they said due to a lack of adequate support once leaving the criminal justice system . The stigma of being an ex-convict and the alienation from family and society makes it’s extremely challenging to reintegrate back into society and hence re-offense
  • The cycle of violence can only break when there is a socio-economic shift and job creation
  • Gangs should positively influence its members and not entice one to a life of crimes and violence (e.g education should be encouraged , sports and recreation and arts and culture should be a focus .
  • Each one should take responsibility for their actions and emphasised a life of crime is not worth it .

This work will be show cased:

Afrikaans insert:
Saturday 22 Sep
KykNET – channel 144
English insert:

Sunday 23 Sep.
Time to be confirmed
eNCA – channel 403


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