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Author: Jake Lorfing

Number of entries: 1
Email: [email protected]

Feb 14

Miksang with Incarcerated Youth

Filed underArts and Poetry, International Programs, Regions, Southern States

Jake Lorfing describes his adventures and shares photos from teaching contemplative photography to teenagers.

We didn’t know what to expect entering the Gardner Betts Juvenile Justice Center to meet the eight girls, ages 14-17, who had signed up for a weekly Miksang Photography class. Four volunteers from the Austin Shambhala Center, background checked and fingerprinted, deemed acceptable by the state of Texas to work with juvenile offenders – what had we signed up for? How would Miksang, the art of synchronizing body and mind in this present moment through photography, work with young people who had failed on so many levels, and were imprisoned in a tightly programmed local unit, in hopes of avoiding incarceration in a state facility?

The answer to that question, simply stated, is “amazingly well!” The girls, the staff, and we volunteers are all having a wonderful time. We’ve complete three of five scheduled weekend sessions, and the girls are taking photographs that reflect a mindfulness and appreciation of their institutional environment, almost inch by inch! Continue on to view the girls’ photographs. Continue…

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