One of my favorite scenes from Cars, the movie, is when Sally takes McQueen out for a drive…just to go for a drive. And they come upon a magnificent view of the landscape. One that everybody else seems not to even know exists anymore.
Sally: Forty years ago, that interstate down there didn’t exist.
Lightning McQueen: Really?
Sally: Yeah. Back then, cars came across the country a whole different way.
Lightning McQueen: How do you mean?
Sally: Well, the road didn’t cut through the land like that interstate. It moved with the land, it rose, it fell, it curved. Cars didn’t drive on it to make great time. They drove on it to have a great time.
I love this metaphor. We race through life after shadows. Dreams that ultimately end as dust. More money. More stuff. More fame. More power. More accomplishments. More checkmarks on a bucket list. And our human ingenuity has provided endless gadgets, innovations and shortcuts to get there even faster.
All of the shortcuts mean we make great time. But having a great time, that happens on the rises and falls of the journey. It’s also the quiet, humble present moment while on that journey where we happen to uncover the deepest mysteries and purpose of our lives. Makes all of our busy shortcutting look pretty silly. And boring.