According to a 2014 study:
Locking up the same people over and over points to failures in the American penal system. The United States has about 5% of the world’s population yet it accounts for about 25% of the world’s prisoners. Despite a steady decline in the crime rate over the past two decades, the United States incarcerates more of its citizens than any other country. As a proportion of the population, the United States has 15 times as many prisoners as Iceland, 14 times as many as Japan and 10 times as many as Norway. If crime is down, why are there still so many Americans behind bars? Experts point to a number of factors: harsher mandatory sentences, the decades-long war on drugs, high violent crime rates, a politicized criminal justice system, and lack of a social safety net.
Recidivism rates also have a significant impact on incarceration numbers. Over 50% of prisoners in the United States will be back in jail within three years of their release.
Conversely, while Americans may scoff at the treatment of prisoners in other countries, particularly Norway where a convict can be sentenced to as little as eight years for murder, the low incarceration and recidivism rates suggest that the “normalization” approach works.
There is statistical evidence that we can do much better on integration for prisoners before release and also upon release from incarceration.
This benefits our society and also benefits prisoners and their families in building a new life.
But what services could be employed that are not already implemented?
We could empower prisoners returning home with the knowledge they do have choices and also they can create a fulfilling life for themselves?
There are ancient ways, that they can learn to adopt/adapt into their lives, that bring a greater sense of purpose and opportunity. They could also deal with stress at a deeper level.
How? Through the ancient art of Dreamwork.
By the simple ( or so it seems) ability to pay attention to our sleep Dreams, we can glean an enormous amount of information including our emotional states, our stress levels, ideas for creating a better life, information on what is holding us back and more.
These are learnable skills that anyone can benefit from, but especially so, for people that have lost the ability to navigate their own life in a positive direction.
We all Dream every night, whether we remember our Dreams or not. We all have Dreams of the future. Better understood as a probable future. If we do not like what we see, we can take positive action in our waking life to amend our own future.
The benefits of Dreamwork are many, including:
Increased sense of well being
Healing of the Soul
A renewed sense of purpose!
The Mystic Dream Center is a 501C non profit established in 2000, dedicated to teaching these skills of empowerment to people that feel disempowered. Founder Susan Morgan is actively teaching Dreamwork on a National level but is looking for funding to train new people to help deliver Dreamwork to many more people. The number of incarerated returning home and feeling unsupported, is staggering and we need many people skilled in this art to reach them.
Please consider helping this worthy and overdue cause!