I've been sitting in traffic for over an hour and it seems like we could be here for awhile longer. They've stopped traffic coming from the other direction and there have been two helicopters that have landed and then flown away. There is a smell of smoke in the air.
A feeling of sadness, or sickness has settled into my stomach and I've said a few prayers. Things like this always make you feel great big kindness towards people that you don't know. Make you focus solely on them. It's interesting. But for the grace of God, that would have been me. I stopped awhile back at the rest stop only because I didn't have any more cash for tolls. I stopped at the food counter and they took so long, so I thought at the moment. And now, I'm sitting in traffic a half mile to a mile or so away from a devastating car accident. I've been up since 6:30 am (16 hours) and have been in my car for 7 hours. Not even a small bit important. Not even a small bit. Someone's life is being changed or maybe lost in this moment.
This stuff is happening all the time, of course, but being close to it always makes it so much more real. Palpable. I feel like this is why service to others in this life is really the only way to live. No matter what your career might be, there is always the opportunity to serve and lift others.
I was watching The Power of Myth last night...Joseph Campbell... and in it he was telling the story of a man who was about to commit suicide by jumping off a ledge, and then a police officer grabbed that man. And as they were about to fall over the edge that the man had tried to jump from, a second police officer grabbed onto the first and saved them all. All the while, risking his own life very much in the process. And when asked why he did that, the man said I couldn't live with myself if I hadn't tried. He was willing to risk everything, his job, his family, his life, Campbell says because we all know at some very deep level that we are all one. That we exist within each other. One huge living organism.
I had a coach once tell me that we are all cells in the body of humanity. I think he heard it somewhere, I can't remember where now. And to be a cell of good...to be a cell that fights off the cancer.
That's pretty deep. But we all do have the ability to send out energy into the world. What energetic field are we giving off? What ripple effect do our actions and words have on others?
In a moment, it may be gone. Hopefully we give as much as we've got while we've got the chance.