mandala therapy

You may have already heard about the progressive rehab programme in Saudi Arabia for those involved with terrorist groups.  Art therapy is a key part of this programme.  Dr. Awad Alyami, the art therapist, encourages the delinquents to express their negative energy on the paper where it is safe.  Dr. Alyami demonstrates how he does this himself; he does energetic drawings of red lines.  The extremists pick up their crayons and get absorbed in their drawings. So the emphasis is not on producing works of art for display but on expressing feelings, transferring the negative energy onto the piece of paper which is the safe place for it to be . Yet the inmates go on to produce interesting varieties of drawings lines Oddly a lot of the work they go on they produce is not at all angry or violent but attractive abstract and symbolic designs.  As Dr Alyami cheerfully observes, these guys are not so tough.  It does look as if the art therapy dissipates the negative feelings and liberates positive feelings 
Dr. Alyami is a friendly unassuming person, committef to his work.   He hopes eventually to have music and dancing .  But the existing programme is an achievement by any standards. There are art therapy programmes and dedicated therapists outside Saudi Arabia but this programme is inspirational. See a report by Nancy Durham.