Why would or should I lend any sort of compassion for a prisoner? Why care about them? Aren’t they guilty of some infraction of the world’s rules and are they not where they should be, suffering the judgment they so rightfully deserve?
There are many outreach programs designed to help prisoners in one way or another. We applaud their efforts; they’re doing the best that they can. Jesus once remarked,
“ I was in prison and you came to me.”
So any way that a helping hand is extended is good and charitable.
But real Forgiveness and real compassion does not place the giver on a higher plane. It does not share with the unworthy, a “gift” of forgiveness while reserving judgment, only temporarily withheld, for a future reminder that justifiable repayment for sins committed remains ever looming in the background, like a trump card waiting to be played.
“All that I give is given to myself.” [ACIM lesson 126]
The science of quantum mechanics has proven beyond all doubt that everything and everyone is connected at the sub-atomic level. If we took a crowd of people (prisoners included) and placed them under a very large microscope, we couldn’t tell where one begins and where one ends. The phrase, “We are all One,” is no longer just a flowery new age concept, but the Truth in every respect, verified even by worldly science.
“We receive what we give, and do unto others as you would have done unto you takes on a deeper more profound understanding when viewed in the Light of Truth.
A Course in Miracles teaches us that only in the belief that we are separated from our Source, our “God” (however one defines it) can we believe in “others.” The world teaches that there are individuals apart from you, with their own behavior patterns and unique notions which have no bearing on your own. The world will verify with widespread convincing support that there are others out there who deserve to be restricted or confined to areas where their potential threat to you is minimized. The world would edify right versus wrong, good versus bad, proper versus improper and everything these characteristics produce. The world substantiates separation, and enhances all condemnation.
Yeah but, what about the bad things prisoners have done that landed them where they are? Doesn’t the idea of justice come into play? Shouldn’t they be held accountable and forced to endure all of the wrath their evil deeds warrant? Shouldn’t they suffer punishment for what they did? What compassion do they really deserve?
What if, as quantum physics suggests, there were no they? What if there were only One mind here, one ’being’ and only the appearance of many separated. What if in this separation there exists a predominate notion that every single individual is perceived as a lone island, independent and remote in its own “life” and therefore, unconnected. What if we individuals simply forgot our Oneness and became identified and lost in our artificial individual notions. Think of the possibilities if we could accept the idea that there really is no they, no other people, nothing ‘out there.’
We are not children of the world; we are children of God
(quote from Marrianne Williamson)
We have is an “authorship” problem. Not recognizing our divine source, we express ourselves as creations of the world rather than as creations of spirit. The world has imprinted upon our psyches its brokenness and pain. And there is no point in trying to heal that pain until we heal our misplaced sense of heritage. We are not children of the world; we are children of God. We don’t have to allow the false input of a weary world to affect us as it does.
While seemingly guilty of some infraction of the world’s rules, there is no order of importance or degree of lesser or greater. Crimes or full blown wars, mild irritation or murderous rage are equal in their contribution to the validly of the world we created whose constantly changing characteristics keep us blind and imprisoned in little self conception.
So why care about prisoners? Why extend compassion to them? Why lend a helping hand to those whose personal crashes are still burning? Why? Because they seem to find themselves in the hell within the hell.
They are in the very best ‘place’ they can possibly be to be open to help. They skidded on their knees and faces and came full speed into an unmovable stone wall where only apathy, guilt, blame, fear and misery make their home. They are at the threshold of Heaven itself.
“All that I give is given to myself,” is a statement of reminder that just as all judgment and condemnation find their ways back to their source, so also does compassion, kindness, generosity and an authentic belief in the Truth that We Are All One come back to us and brings with it the Grace of God, unlimited in Its endless flow of Love.
Spirit Light Outreach SpiritLightOutreach.org
6833 Stanley Avenue
Berwyn, Illinois 60402