Sitting staring at a blank wall the image of a zafu, a small round cushion, flying through the air and hitting me on the back of the head came to mind. Wait, let me back up a bit: I have grown very attached to my zafu having clocked so, so, many, many hours sitting on it. At times I realize I have an almost obsessive affection for it. It has been repaired and recovered and in it’s heart it contains my former teacher’s zafu. *Sigh*
None of these things has anything to do with my practice or the value of it or my sincerity or effort. At the end of the day it is just a cushion… And you may ask, quite rightly, what does this have to do with cars?
Well we all have to get to places. We can pay attention to where we are without getting confused about how to get to where we need to be. *groan*
We all, at least begrudgingly, acknowledge we affect each other with our behaviour, certainly we acknowledge when other people’s behaviour upsets us in some way. But put us in our very own vehicle, encase us in “top of the line performance” and drench us in the joy of our favourite mix of tunes OR WHATEVER, driving along in our cars, flying like Isadora Duncan’s scarf down a ribbon of hi-way, well, that is freedom.
The images of driving and freedom are endless thanks to really clever and expensive advertising. Too bad they are untrue. It isn’t free. It is very costly. It costs in waved penalties for environmental damages for the HUGE companies that produce all manner of stuff for cars. It costs in road maintenance, insurance claims, hospital and emergency response costs, and in broken bodies and destroyed lives.
It costs in deluded and dangerous expectations about “what we deserve to have” and gives us an added layer of separation from the harm we might be doing to others.
Whatever you believe about yourself and what you are doing, if it is a means of separating yourself from your fellow beings and their suffering you will get someplace, maybe get there really fast, but you won’t be happy and you can never be free.
You might get a buzz, a high, a sense of being unfettered by worries and concerns and responsibilities but, AND IT IS A REALLY BIG BUTT, AS IN DUMB-ASS, now wait for it, here it comes, the flying zafu!!!!