Please pray for Don William Davis, Stacey Eugene Johnson, Jack Harold Jones, Ledell Lee, Bruce Earl Ward, Kenneth D. Williams, Marcel W. Williams, and Jason McGehee as well as their victims.
Please pray that if these men are innocent of the murders that they were charged with that they forgive those who are negligently taking their lives. May they die without anger and bitterness in their hearts.
Please pray that in the roughly 20 years that these men have been incarcerated, that they’ve purified the negative karma associated with killing by being kind, thoughtful and caring to those around them and through their heartfelt confession.
Please pray that we can all learn to forgive each other for the harm we’ve caused one another. May we realize that only forgiveness can cut the chains that bind us to the past and grant us the peace of mind we so desire. Not revenge, not killing, only forgiveness and understanding.
Please pray that as a society, we realize that capital punishment is unethical. Killing fellow human beings for actions that they took when their minds were overcome by anger, greed, desire, and in extreme cases — mental illness, only perpetuates the cycle of violence and negative karma.
Please pray for the executioners, the prison guards, the judges, and anyone who supports these executions directly or indirectly. The karma of killing results in immediate rebirth in the hell realms. Even when one eventually attains a higher rebirth, due to the karmic imprints of killing, one will have a difficult life and will die young. By carrying out these executions, the State of Arkansas is creating non-virtuous karma that all who are involved will experience. If the eight men are guilty of murder, then certainly they will pay the price for their crimes by suffering the torments of the hell realms for countless eons. What need is there for the State to punish them by ending their lives early?
Please pray that we come to realize that since all sentient beings have been our mothers in the past, when one individual is harmed, we are all harmed. A government ordered execution rips apart our humanity by destroying trust and dignity, and weakening our sense of community. May we all find skillful ways to block the remaining Arkansas executions and any future executions from being carried out.
Learn more about the death penalty in America
Innocence Project – on the execution of Ledell Lee
Human Side of Executions in America (visual presentation)
Death Penalty Info fact sheet
Bryan Stevenson. We need to talk about an injustice. (TED talk)
Bryan Stevenson. Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption. Spiegel & Grau; Reprint edition (August 18, 2015).