Buddhism Behind Bars: 7 Organizations Making a Difference

A list of some of the dedicated organizations offering Buddhist teachings and meditation practices to inmates in prisons across the U.S.

Lion’s Roar
5 January 2018

Buddhist Association of the United States Prison Programs

The Prison Book Program sends books and materials to inmates; the Prisoner Correspondence Course Program familiarizes inmates with Buddhist concepts through written assignments.

Liberation Prison Project

Offers spiritual advice, teachings, books, and materials to over 20,000 inmates interested in exploring, studying, and practicing Buddhism. liberationprisonproject.org/index2.html

North American Vipassana Prison Trust

A 10-day Vipassana meditation program taught at correctional facilities in North America to help inmates of any religion incorporate meditation into their lives.

Prison Meditation Project

Offers meditation practices, nonviolent communication, and movement practices to inmates in the San Diego area taught by volunteers, detainees, and fellow inmates.

Prison Mindfulness Institute

Provides inmates, staff, and volunteers with nonsectarian training in mindfulness meditation, communication, and conflict resolution.

Ratna Peace Initiative Inmate Project

Provides mindfulness meditation instruction in person and through correspondence to inmates in prisons throughout 48 states.

Zen Mountain Monastery Prison Project

Monastics and lay practitioners visit New York States prisons to lead group meditation practices, liturgy, dharma talks, and meditation retreats.

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