This is not about guns, though guns do make killing easier. These were six and seven year olds. Guns were not necessary. Small children are not a threat, and in no way can they fight back. This is about our attachment to violence and our idolatry of the individual. Instead of seeing that we all share in one life, we see everyone else as an object—either an influence to be fought or a thing to be manipulated or/and destroyed. We are training our young people to see themselves as the only real, living human beings in the world.
What is it we are pursuing? For us, it is all about pain and pleasure, sensory experiences that we see as making our life good or bad. We do not care about each other. And if we actually went into our Hearts we would see that the pain of others is in fact our pain. We have lost the ability to empathize, to feel for each other. The truth is that there is only one “I”, and it includes us all. That means your pain is my pain; your happiness is my happiness. There is no need to be jealous or relieved, because it is all just us. No one is excluded; we are one. That is why it is so sad to see us hurt each other. The wrong understanding is that we are separate individuals who have no connection with anyone else. This is just not true.
We have somehow decided that the individual is more important than the greater good of a society, even that the individual is more important than God. We have championed the small self with all its wrong understanding. The small self, the character we are playing here, has only a shrunken understanding, and when left to its own devices will do everything to survive on its own. The Siva Sutras establish three impurities: “I am imperfect”, “I am separate”, and “I am the doer of good and bad deeds”. These impurities, by which the small self lives and destroys, delude us into thinking we have power and control. And we will even destroy our own bodies, believing we have ultimate power when in fact once we do that our small self dies as our body dies. Who we really are is beyond these temporary vehicles.
The Self is not individual, the Self is all. So these children have sacrificed for all of us. They are showing us what is truly important—not how precious and fleeting our individual lives are, but how we are all one Life in God. It is up to us to learn from them, to return to what is Real and True. We need to give up our wrong understanding, our fascination with power and control, the things that drive us further apart, that encourage us to believe what is not true to be true. Our true nature is Love, so activities that alienate us from one another in fact weaken us. Our strength is in seeing all as us—not as a nice idea but as a practice and a Reality.
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