Justice Throughout the Ages

The word justice implies fairness and righteousness. In the system of law, it is represented by Themis, the female God of Justice in ancient Greek mythology. An idol known to every household, she carries a sword in one hand and a scale in the other. The sword represents authority while the scale represents the fairness of justice. In western society, the image of Themis often symbolises the legal or judicial system. She is an embodiment of justice or judicial fairness.

The image of Themis has changed slightly over time. Themis in her early portrait had shining eyes, but since the 16th century her eyes have been covered with a strip of cloth. According to the official website of the U.S. Supreme Court, the explanation for her eyes being covered is that it is an expression of the popularly accepted saying, “Justice is blind,” meaning justice is impartial. Why artists started to cover Themis’ eyes in the 16th century is unclear, but there is some evidence that the artists of the time covered her eyes to satirise the courts or the judicial institutions that abused their power by silently approving and tolerating trampling the law. Therefore, today this image appears in many political cartoons to suggestion that meaning.

Themis in ancient Greek mythology

The image of Themis at the Department of Justice

There is much we can learn by studying this image and its history. Nothing in the world is accidental, particularly in western society, which is ruled by laws. The 16th century was the peak of the Renaissance (14th – 17th centuries A.D.) across the European continent. Humanism blossomed during the Renaissance when mankind disposed of theologically–based authority and began valuing individual liberty. It was a time when the ideology degenerated and when mankind’s moral foundation was badly shaken. The fairness and authority of law were being challenged and justice was pushed aside by the lust for money and power. Therefore Themis’ eyes were covered and people told legends about heroes in the forest (warriors who helped the poor) to express their desire for justice. Of course, the rule of law developed when people in society no longer controlled themselves according to an inner sense of righteousness. When morals were high there was only the rule of the lord and everything was measured by de – virtue, the idea of what is right. The judicial corruption or abuse was a manifestation of the degeneration of the human heart. Justice was replaced by corrupt politics and eroded by personal interests. The legal system in countries ruled by dictatorships, such as the evil Chinese communist regime, has become a tool used by the powerful to oppress at will and persecute their own people.

Themis in a political cartoon

It is of great significance that Falun Dafa practitioner are suing Jiang at this time. It is not simply an expression of the quest for justice and a trial of the evil leader in the world. It is not that Dafa practitioners want to take things from society. On the contrary, during this process we can save peoples lives and give good things to society. Through this lawsuit we expose what is evil, what is not righteous and the degenerated things in the human world. At the same time, we can remove those bad things with our righteous thoughts. It is we who are the representatives of justice. Our involvement as Dafa practitioners is to validate Falun Dafa, harmonise human justice and rectify the judicial system. This will become a reference for the history of the future. “The Fa will bring to humankind everything new and righteous, and it will not be affected by anything that is old, crooked, or warped.” (From “Using at Will” in Essentials for Further Advancement II) Therefore, it is we who are telling the human society about real justice, we who are bringing justice to human society and we who are rectifying the laws of justice.

Half a century has passed since the Second World War. Mankind is still reflecting upon this tragedy. The Nuremberg Trials of the Nazi war criminals are over. What remains ever etched into peoples memory is that at a critical historical moment, their loss of morals and conscience served to escalate this tragedy. The Court of Justice and Morals will forever put on trial those who, at critical moments, succumb to the evil, those who call for appeasement just to safeguard themselves and those political speculators who dance with the wolves. Although among them were favourites of the time who stood above the rest, yet they destroyed their fame with one slip of mind on the scale of justice versus evil. Now, they will be never have peace and will carry forever that heavy burden of guilt because of their roles in that historical tragedy. Today, this scale again stands before fate and history, as solemn and serious as ever, and Themis is to uncover her eyes before this event is over.

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