33 Living Arrows
I live and work in a university community, full of the life and energy of its young students. Some days I go to Sproul Plaza at lunch, and sit on a bench and look at the thousands of brilliant young men and women who walk about, talking, laughing, and bringing the most valuable asset a university can have: young minds ready to grow and expand and learn, preparing to give back to the world by becoming professionals, scientists, and leaders of tomorrow. It is unfathomable that such beautiful stream of vitality and life which was running through Virginia Tech, came to an abrupt and violent end yesterday. I am speechless in the face of this violence and brutal attack on human life and humanity. The thought of those kids’ parents and families and communities won’t let go of me. I am mother, aunt, and friend to many college students. The tragedy’s dimensions are truly unthinkable for me. My blogger friend, Serendip http://fleetingperusal.blogspot.com/, who is a sensitive and kind man, has been particularly hard-hit with the news. I pray for him, and I pray for all the families, friends, and affiliates of the Virginia Tech community, to find the strength and hope with which to overcome this sadness and tragedy. I also pray for my Korean friends, who as immigrants must feel particularly saddened by the perpetrator’s South Korean identity, something that they now have to hear 100 times an hour on CNN. I quote something from Jebran Khalil Jebran’s book, Prophet, where he talks about children: And a woman who held a babe against her bosom said, "Speak to us of Children." And he said: Your children are not your children. They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you yet they belong not to you. You may give them your love but not your thoughts, For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, For their souls dwell in the house of to-morrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you. For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday. You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.