using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Lions Roar : May 2011
SHAMBHALA SUN MAY 2011 38 we have a network of programs to empower people coming home from prison, to affirm their dignity, and to transform their lives. for people in these programs, the recidivism rate is about 7 percent.” booker loves creative problem-solving and partnerships. one of his favorites is youthbuild, which takes at-risk kids, college dropouts, and recently incarcerated teens through a yearlong intensive in which they attend school, learn construction skills (with a focus on green building techniques), and work to im- prove their communities. in the end, booker said, “the issues in our inner cities are prag- matic and require policies, resources, and materials. but we cannot achieve any of our practical goals without spiritual strength. we have great strength, as human beings and as american commun- ities, but there are also spiritual toxins we need to ward off. one is resignation—the thought that there will always be poverty, war, violence, and that there is not much you can do about it. it saps the spirit. another is sedentary agitation: being regularly upset by all that you see but not getting up and doing anything about it. that’s why we need soldiers of peace like the dalai lama and virginia Jones. they show us what we’re capable of.” the alaMeda county Juvenile Justice center sits high on a hill in San leandro, which is ironic because the hills in east bay are almost exclusively the province of the well-to-do. the gang turf is in the flatlands. once you’re inside “juvie,” though, there are no open, airy spaces and sweeping views. it’s walls, lots of doors, linoleum floors, and internal windows so you can be seen at all times. the boys and girls there seem like fish out of water. the prison garb removes a lot of their distinctive style. the blandness and regimentation is in sharp contrast to the showy, righteous feel of their hip-hop street culture. the gangs that most of the children in the JJc belong to are in oakland, which, like newark, is a post-industrial port city. it covers an area three times larger than newark and holds almost half a million people. it never experienced the exodus that new- ark did, and its population has risen during the bay area boom, but its fortunes have lagged far behind surrounding commun- ities. when former (and now current) california governor Jerry brown became oakland mayor in 1999, improving schools and lowering crime topped his agenda. but as brown left office in 2007, he was philosophical about how much he’d been able to achieve. he’d had less success with schools and crime than with downtown development projects, like Jack london Square. oak- land has seen a drop in murders in recent years, from its 1992 high of 174 to ninety last year, but it remains on several top ten lists of america’s most dangerous and violent cities. in 1997, not long before Jerry brown became mayor, the dalai lama led his first peacemakers conference, at the bill graham auditorium in San francisco. the conference gave a boost to an already developing network of groups that try to bring together inner and outer peace. in recent years, oakland has become home to such innovative youth programs as youth radio and united roots oakland, which use art and performance to inspire and en- gage young people, and youth uprising, a leadership development program for urban youth that sponsors corner’s cafe, entirely run by young people. oakland is home to the world-famous green for all, the organization started by van Jones, who is now the leading spokesman for the green jobs movement. the People’s grocery is celebrated as an innovator in the “locavore” movement for urban farming and food justice, working to create a food system that “prioritizes the needs of the urban poor.” when Jon oda and amani carey-Simms, instructors in the oakland-based Mind body awareness Project, took me into the Juvenile Justice center to observe them teaching mindfulness, the first thing that hit me was the edge. it’s in the postures and the facial expressions. there are a surprising number of thir- teen- and fourteen-year-olds, some of them already parents themselves. cops i talked to are very cynical about juvie; they call it “gladiator school.” oda and carey-Simms let me know two things before we went inside. first, it’s all about how you conduct yourself and not as much about what you say. Second, the street kids will check you out a little. they have hard eyes and can eas- ily sense bullshit and gaming. they like to “flip it,” too. if you’re big and heavyset, they call you “tiny,” or “slim.” when i meet the first group of five guys in the mindfulness class, we clasp hands and pat each other on the back. once we’ve sat down and shared introductions, luis (a pseudonym) gives me—an outsized middle-aged white guy in very ordinary clothes—a quick once over and remarks, “So, you’re a gQ model i guess.” it takes me a minute to get the joke. luis, 1; dowdy guy, 0. Jon oda begins the class by talking about martial arts movies. it’s clear he’s a fan and he knows them frame by frame. and so do the guys in the class. i have no idea where things are going. eventually, he’s talking about a lone warrior and all the challenges he’s facing, and there are big nods and affirmations all around: “hella fuckin yeah.” before long they’re talking about how the lone warrior feels, and not long after that, the students (aka the inmates) are talking about how they feel when they’re angry or alone. they’ve become children again. it’s been all of twenty minutes, and he’s flipped it. in the next class, which is much larger and contains a more diverse racial mix of both boys and girls, trash talk and posturing are a rou- tine undercurrent. yet, somehow, after a little while carey-Simms, who deftly avoids becoming anything resembling a disciplinarian, is able to pull out a guitar and sing a song about peace. why aren’t they mocking him, i think. it’s because they’re too busy listening. the Mind body awareness Project was started in 2000, princi- pally by noah levine, author of Dharma Punx, a memoir which in part recounts levine’s own transformation while in juvenile hall. in 2006, vinny ferraro, who also served time in juvie, took charge of training Mba’s teachers. chris Mckenna, a longtime mindful- ness practitioner and trauma counsellor who became executive dir- ector in 2009, told me the program served 1,200 youths last year