“For the LORD gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (Proverb 2:6)
To know all is not the nature of man. His nature is to seek that which enlightens the soul.
They say, “an empty mind is the devil’s breeding ground”. To cultivate this ground into a beautiful, bright garden, we need something profound to take its place, something that does not punish but purifies from within–reading.
Reading as a way of seeing the world in a new light
68% of convicts are usually back within 3 years of release. (Source: Huffington Post)
This data shows us the error in our perception of incarceration. To penalize a criminal, we inflict the same ignorance and rage that they are a part of. We need to offer them a better alternative.
A solitude of choice
Yes, they have been isolated from society so that they can reflect on their mistakes. However, being surrounded by negative entities does not solve the purpose. Moreover, this kind of isolation wasn’t chosen by them and thus, has little positive impact. Here, books help. Reading creates an invisible barrier of their choice, a solitude that they have chosen and where they can contemplate, heal, and grow. From self-help to fiction, all genres of books would be beneficial.
Reading for mental strength
We, on the outside, expect so little of the incarcerated ones. Imagine how hopeless they might feel. Holy books like the Bible and autobiographies light the way towards a brighter path and greatness. Through miracles and life-changing examples, they show that no stumble is too great to overcome. It’s one thing to tell someone, and another to show what can be and what has been. No wonder, a book, in prison, can be viewed as “man’s best friend”. After all, books through words, can rescue you from standing alone. The words within can strengthen will and infuse a passion to be better.
Adding wings to imagination
While non-fiction books are the most sought after for inmates, fiction isn’t far behind and holds a much higher value. They are not just for short-term entertainment, but fuel one’s creativity and imagination. We live many lives vicariously through fictional characters. It’s how we develop empathy towards others and understand consequences of most actions. For an incarcerated person, empathy can mean the difference between his next chance at freedom, and his choices thereafter.
Over to you
There have been many cases where the incarcerated ones have found a way to move on, to get past the negatives, and work on themselves. A crucial part in this journey has been played by reading books. By utilizing their isolation in educating themselves, they took the right steps towards improving their lives.
At Inmate Compassion, we carefully curate books that are beneficial for inmates and are often approved by prison facilities*. Send a book today and extend your helping hand in hopes of a brighter future for them.
*Disclaimer: Please be sure to know your facility rules and regulations. InCom Mail is not liable for rejected orders.