Spy Kids isn’t normally the kind of movie I would watch. But as I heard the actions and the dialogue as my roommate, Tyler watched it in our dorm, there were some things that caught my attention in it, apart from the brilliant performances of Mike Judge. God, he is great.
What eventually struck me as significant about this movie is the premise where a menace wrecks chaos by trying and failing to go back in time. At the end of the movie it is said by one of the children that the menace cannot go back in time, merely create different versions of himself that exist in a similar scenario as the past. It’s true. You can’t travel back in time, or forward. The only time that exists is now.
Innocence of Children
At one point in the movie, the stepmother of the kids tells them that the Spy Kids program was created by the government because adults dawdle in taking action since they over think things. According to Buddhism, unhappiness is created when we don’t participate in this moment. Experiences we have make it much harder to take part in the now as we get older because they shape our views so much. After they occur, we feel like reliving them again when similar things happen. And when different types of situations occur, we reflect on how things used to be. Of course, we can’t just be naïve for the rest of our lives. We have to grow and mature. Present awareness is hard work but once our present situation is lived at this moment, we no longer have to view it with the same feeling we learned from doing it before. Christ, interestingly enough, said to his followers, “You must become children to enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” The Celtic people had a concept of “the Wise Child.” Zen teacher Shunryu Suzuki said that, “Zen minds are like beginner’s minds.” They are very fresh. What’s best is we don’t have to forget all are experiences or start things completely anew to be like “Zen minds.” We simply have to stop lumping old experiences with new ones and transcend the conceptual mind. This is not to say we must stop having names for things, but we need to understand the Buddhist principle of Sunyatta, or emptiness. Look at a picture of a pear and see how you describe it. One might describe it as red and round, but then take a red bouncy ball. You may notice that it is also red and round, and yet you don’t lump a bouncy ball and a pear in the same category. It may be because you don’t define it as “red and round” but that is true of it, as are a number of other things you could notice about it (rubbery, shiny, etc.) Similarly, though we may encounter experiences similar to our old ones, we respect that no two experiences, like snowflakes, are exactly the same, and we no longer have to apply the lessons of old experiences where they can hold us back in life.