Are we all prisoners?

Visible and invisible prisons

Prisons evoke the dreadful image of confinement. And yet the most unassailable walls are those we build unconsciously, within ourselves. But Love can pull them down.

Have prisoners ever been free?

Violence exists in the hearts of human beings because we feel rejected, unloved, misunderstood. As a result, we seek to take revenge on society. This all begins with judgement, with thoughts. We reject people who don’t understand us, those we don’t love, those we suspect, those we doubt. These attitudes will systematically drive us to the worst excesses.

Love will unlock prisons

First of all, we must understand this - Christ came to teach us a lesson about life. If human beings lived in a state of love, there would be no prisons. The prison is an image of society, because it’s society that creates prisons, it needs to protect itself from itself. We are society, it’s all of us. Society has created laws, established rules to protect itself from murder, theft, rape. (…) These human laws have created prisons in order to confine people who don’t abide by the rules.

Christ tells us – “When I was imprisoned you came and visited me; when I was sick you came to see me; when I was hungry you brought me food; when I was thirsty you gave me something to drink.” As long as we continue living by human laws, prisons will exist. But to abolish these laws, we have to live by Love.”

Yvonne Trubert

We have created delinquency ourselves, by the way we think, by our own injustice. Young people – and sometimes they’re not so young - simply follow their impulses until they commit an irrevocable act. So their freedom is taken away - prisons are necessary, it’s true. But if these people had been truly free in the first place, would they have chosen rebellion? Will the person who stands before the judge really understand the meaning of what he has done? It’s doubtful. Imprisonment, whatever form it takes, will not solve the problem, nor clarify the vacuum that has been created deep within a man. From his own point of view, he will always be a victim of injustice.

The prison within

Christ tells us – “I have come to set you free “. But what freedom is he talking about? The liberation of the Jews from the Romans? Liberation from a potential enemy? No. Our own enemy is within ourselves. We close up. We are judged. We judge others. We use the same weapons that have wounded us – lies, indecision, hypocrisy. We run away. In all human societies, it’s always the other person who’s wrong, never us. We build our own jails, brick by brick, and set the bars in our own windows.

Love the saviour

Our inner prisons can only be opened by the love of others. Those who are the most desperately prisoners of themselves hope for only one thing - to be loved for who they are, just the way they are. Not the way someone else wants them to be. Their imprisonment is their refusal of love. Human beings are afraid to love because they are reminded of the maternal love which sometimes castrated or paralysed them, or the love of a father who was absent, but severe and oppressive. People refuse love because they feel they have been cheated. Someone lied to them about love. But are we aware that the quality of our love can change them?

Responsible but not guilty

Being responsible means answering to God for our thoughts and actions. If we are honest with ourselves, we will be honest with others. We must have honesty enough to open our heart. We must listen to those who judge us in order to put everything in its place. If we reach this level of awareness then we can fully understand others. We must cleanse our ways of thinking to avoid making others feel guilty. Then they can try to avoid becoming either a culprit or a victim.

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