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Posted: Sun 05/06/2012 01:00 PM
The Dhamma Brothers is a film that chronicles what happens when two Buddhist teachers enter Alabama's tough William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility to teach prisoners an ancient meditation technique called Vipassana. In this update, find out how many prisoners have taken the Vipassana program since the filming. Plus, former inmate Charles Ice shares how meditation has given him a sense of peace since leaving prison.
Posted: Sat 05/05/2012 08:00 AM
Posted: Thu 05/03/2012 12:00 PM
Jenny Phillips' film The Dhamma Brothers explores what happens when prisoners at one of Alabama's toughest prisons participate in a Vipassana meditation program, an ancient and intense practice requiring 100 hours of silent meditation. Watch as convicted murderer Grady Bankhead reveals why connecting with his inner self was more difficult than nearly nine years on death row.
Posted: Wed 05/02/2012 08:00 AM
In the fall of 1999, I packed my tape recorder and traveled from my home outside Boston to visit Donaldson Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison outside Birmingham, Alabama. I was hoping to interview prisoners about their lives in prison and their experiences with meditation. I had heard that many of the prisoners at Donaldson were learning how to meditate and then teaching one another by reading a book written for prisoners titled Houses of Healing. Because I was also using this book in my volunteer work with prisoners in Massachusetts, I became interested in comparing my work with that of the prisoners at Donaldson.
Donaldson is known as the "House of Pain," the end of the line in Alabama's prison system. It is deep in the countryside, surrounded on three sides by the Black Warrior River. The prison is chronically understaffed because no one wants to work there. There is a heavy atmosphere of misery, hopelessness and violence.
Posted: Tue 05/01/2012 12:00 PM
Alabama's William E. Donaldson Correctional Facility houses 1,500 men considered the state's most dangerous prisoners. The Dhamma Brothers documents what happens when two Buddhist teachers enter the prison to try to transform the lives of the men behind bars.
Watch the trailer, then tune in Sunday, May 6, to watch the entire documentary and get an update on the people featured in the film.
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