Mindful New Mexico organized a community gathering hosted with La Mesa Presbyterian Church and Families4Peace in Albuquerque, to address the disgraceful problem of our education system as a feeder to prisons. As alarming as this situation is, there is hope.
Speaking to a full house on August 9, Fleet Maull and Jimmy Santiago Baca, both former felons, helped us understand the power of mindfulness and poetry as tools to transform this disturbing social dynamic.
Fleet Maull is the founder and Board President of the Engaged Mindfulness Institute,the Prison Mindfulness Institute and the National Prison Hospice Association. He is a senior teacher with two different Buddhist traditions, as well as a Board member of the Upaya Zen Center in Santa Fe. Since he left prison, Fleet has dedicated his life to transforming the criminal justice system through restorative justice and mindfulness training for inmates and corrections officers. Watch his presentation.
Jimmy Santiago Baca is New Mexico’s best-known poet and writer. He learned to read and write while serving 6.5 years in prison. Instead of becoming a hardened criminal, he emerged from prison a writer who has received multiple prestigious literary awards. Baca has devoted his post-prison life to writing and teaching others and has conducted hundreds of writing workshops in prisons, community centers, libraries, and universities throughout the country. Watch his presentation.
Robert Baade, Director of the Robert F Kennedy Charter School made it clear in his presentation at the Transforming the School to Prison Pipeline event that his school and its community partners are out to SMASH the pipeline
Generation Justice, an Albuquerque not-for-profit trains teens to approach journalism from a social justice framework. A GenJust team recorded the event, aired it on KUNM and made it available as a podcast. Integrated into their radio program are also reflections by Matt, one of the youth team members who has been affected directly by the school to prison pipeline.
Mindfulness is a practice of where we choose to place our focus. Hundreds of educators, businesses, entrepreneurs, healers, and others from around our state are integrating mindful approaches into healthcare, education, business, and justice.