My wife has been watching the Jodi Arias trial intently, and I have caught a few glimpses here and there; enough to know that her story is falling apart. If found guilty of the heinous crime of passion of which she is accused, she may get the death penalty.
I am not writing to offer my opinion of her or her actions, or my opinion on what caused her to commit them. I say her actions only because if you have followed it, you know she has admitted to the killing, but the matter at hand is whether it was self defense.
I want to say something about the death penalty itself. I don’t believe I have ever touched on this subject on this blog.
India (the very womb and cradle of Hinduism and Buddhism) has the death penalty, shockingly enough to some. The method used there today is often hanging. I was shocked by this at one point or another too. But I read somewhere along the line that the original purpose of capital punishment in India was not, indeed, “punishment.” It was to clear out the karma of the condemned for the act committed.
I find this fascinating in so many ways, though I don’t know if it was true. I don’t know if that is or has ever been the intention behind capital punishment in India or anywhere. But I do know that it likely works to that end for the condemned and their everlasting soul. One could say that “sitting and rotting in prison for the rest of their lives” would be a much more effective karma-clearing device. But I think for many killers, lets say, sitting and thinking what they’ve done even for years does very little to shake their inner peace.
And for me that is comforting, when trying very hard to see someone condemned for even horrible crimes for what they are: part of one and the same Infinite Oneness as myself.
What I don’t know is why someone in a death penalty situation would be given such a deal. I mean when you think about it, it is a painful backlash for the act they committed, but it is also a bit of a boon, a gift, if it does indeed clear the karma for that act. This makes me wonder if those who die by capital punishment had some “positive karma” (by this world’s standards) stored up.
What say you?
Jai Hari Aum!