Beside me a very small young man is dreaming. Like every loving parent in America, today when I look upon him, I am flooded with more then the usual river of emotion. Most of us as parents try not to let our minds wander to the darkness of what it would be like to have them suddenly no longer with us. But on days like today- we do. Like a flag in our souls for those parents whose bodies and minds are screaming for their babies, we allow ourselves to fleetingly imagine the torture. For we can't allow it in for more then a moment-even the thought is paralyzing. Having a little five ( going on 6) year-old kindergartner in my home- I could not even let myself go there at first. It is only this morning I can bring our nation's tragedy home. The girls are spending the night out. As I woke I was thoughtful that it is Hazel, who takes up the most space in our home. Both physically, and emotionally, she at 5 is, what 5 is. For a moment- in honor of all parents whose children won't come home- I allow myself the darkness. I allow myself to cry.
The most startling and surprising moment of this tragedy for me has been that I am neither startled or surprised. I did not have a moment where I wondered how this could be true. I actually live in a world where I am not shocked to hear kindergartners where massacred in their classroom. It is not only because shootings have become common on the news. It is not only because of our "gun culture" that I am not surprised. It is because of our culture. I am not surprised or shocked that children were murdered, or that we have murders among us.
We evaluate our lives, our routines and try to protect our children from being harmed. But maybe we should be looking from the other direction. My greatest tragedy would not be harm coming to my children. My greatest tragedy would be harm coming from them. If we want to live in peace- we must live in peace. That means being less concerned with what is done to us then what we do. It means laying down our presumptive defenses, and allowing vulnerability. It means being concerned for the welfare of all, especially children. Being an example of peace. Holding something sacred. Collectively. We have dozens of problems in our culture and not one, not one, could not be solved within one generation of collectively holding our children as sacred.
Let us not simply light candles, but acknowledge the flame already burning. Please join me in offering this blessing, and offering it often, so we may embody this blessing and pass it amongst us until the sun rises on a world of peace.
i honor the light within you, and the light within each of your children. those who have come, but could not be with us today. those who have climbed our laps and backs all day, and those who are still coming. blessings on you and your children. namaste.