Friday, May 14, 2010

Turn Signals

I was driving down the road yesterday and a car in front of me had their right blinker light on. For miles. At first, I always pay attention to the signals of cars. Then I look at the car's "body" language. I was trying to decide if I should stay out of the next lane, or determine exactly the person's intention. In time, I realized that the driver did not even know it was on.

I began asking myself "What signal have I turned on that I have forgotten is on?" I think that we do that often in our lives. We get into our day, running on auto pilot, and have forgotten that we are signaling to others that we want to go in a direction other than the direction we intend. Our grandmothers told us we needed to pay attention. Not such bad advice. Spiritual teachers try to teach us mindfulness...presence. Being in touch with your daily activity.

Sometimes the signals come from our past conditioning; sometimes those forgotten turn signals come from a betrayal or a disappointment; sometimes they come from our ego's need for attention. Yesterday, it was not until the driver decided to turn left that her signal changed. I realized that how other drivers treated her was based upon her right turn signal, not the fact she was driving in her lane mindlessly. It reminded me to pay attention to the signals I was giving to others. After living through many dramas in my own life, I would prefer that my personal signal to my friends, my family, my loved ones, be one that signals peace, love and acceptance. Checking my turn signals today, on and off the road!!!

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