Lesson from a Blackbird

I grew up on a farm.  My brother and I were out in a field with his shotgun one day when a flock of blackbirds flew over.  I fired into the flock, hitting one unfortunate bird.  I was thrilled at my marksmanship, never having expected to hit anything.  Feeling victorious, I picked the little bird up, only to find he wasn’t dead yet.  He wrapped his little claws around my finger reflexively, like a newborn baby does.  It broke my heart that I had taken his life for no reason other than my own pleasure.  That was when I learned every creature’s life is as precious to it as mine is to me.  I’ve never wanted to harm another since then.