Reflective Non-Reactivity

“It’s a little embarrassing that after 45 years of research & study, the best advice I can give people is to be a little kinder to each other.”
~ Aldous Huxley


reflecting on past, present & future ~d nelson

Rear view mirror reflects the fast approaching:
parents, teachers, & those
who came before:

whether they behaved with civility,
protected the environment,
and/or cared for all others;

sitting with parents & roots

or alternately, those who
acted without civility
seemingly more concerned for grasping
power, wealth, fame & sensual pleasure
than helping others or the planet.


no outrunning past or future ~d nelson


Having reflected on the interconnected nature
of all things, across time & space,
may I continue having a sense of balance,
of equanimity; to remaining calm,
& non-reactive, best I can.
Offering peaceful responses
to changing road conditions.
Quickly avoiding road-rage
or getting run over, if/when necessary.

test driving non-reactive, non-getaway cars

May I have the gratitude & patience necessary,
practicing mindful breaths, concentration & insight
before speaking and reacting.
Remembering, as MLK pointed out,
that the arc of history
bends toward justice, and that road is LONG.
May we all aspire traveling towards
the more beautiful continuations into our future.


Happiness means feeling you are on the right path every moment. You don’t need to arrive at the end of the path in order to be happy.
~ Thich Nhat Hanh


78 thoughts on “Reflective Non-Reactivity

    1. smilecalm Post author

      my heart understands, dear Rosaliene!
      with these little squeegees we’re doing
      the best we can, keeping visibility clear enough
      to avoid going right over the edge.
      may your day be well, david 🙂

    1. smilecalm Post author

      smiling to your sweet words, dear JD!
      at times it seems i’ve come far
      at other times, not so much.
      wishing you happiness, david 🙂

  1. JoAnna

    I am grateful for this meditative reminder. I am often calm and kind. But every now and then, I forget. Oops! I am also grateful for the chuckle at imagining you test driving non-reactive, non-getaway cars. 🙂

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you, dear JoAnna
      for understanding
      that this is a reflection of my practice
      which is to gracefully accept the reminders
      and drive carefully 🙂

    1. smilecalm Post author

      your very kind, dear Betty!
      somedays i’m a better driver
      than on other days.
      may we all be
      the most courteous
      drivers possible 🙂

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you, dear Karen
      for your kind words!
      wish i had a nice convertible
      for us to enjoy a summer ride in
      but happiness is available
      even in this old ford pickup, especially
      with the windows rolled down 🙂

  2. Elizabeth Joan MacDougall

    Hi David, I love being on your notice list for when you post a new blog. Clever to see the mirror before and after. I’m having a good time in Orange county. Got to the grocery store today for some regular food today. Oats, etc, salad & veggies. Shared my strawberries with Gwen and her guests this evening. Feels like one big party. Resting at midnight. Love you, Love wet dog, too! Elizabeth

  3. Jean-Jacques @ Gypsy Café

    Great reflections, David and I sense a bit of humor in there too. Non-reactiveness is indeed a frame of mind or a state of being that has to be cultivated in the current atmosphere, David. (On a personal level – my solutions: I have no car and don’t do social networking [except for WP if it can be called that], so chances of being ‘triggered” are much reduced)

    1. smilecalm Post author

      did attempt a little levity expressing a dire state, yes, dear Jean-Jacques!
      i didn’t have a car when i lived in asia and europe, but challenging when living in rural usa. however, i cycle, mostly.
      smiling to your minimizing media’s influence on your consciousness!
      while i glance at current events as an attempt to not run away from the suffering of the world,
      even just quick perusal of daily news is quite toxic for me. perhaps we’ll sit at a terrace and smile to life sometime.
      wishing you happy moments 🙂

  4. Val Boyko

    May those we all meet on the road be as mindful as you are. Thank you for the guidance David.
    I do appreciate those those mirror shots. 😎

    1. smilecalm Post author

      i’m grateful for your kind supportive understanding, dear Val!
      as we’re all riding on the same bus
      those mirrors are most helpful
      for glimpses of what’s up ahead 🙂

    1. smilecalm Post author

      oh, dear JoAnn
      yes, let’s breathe the precious air together!
      for the time being
      I’ve taped over the panic and eject buttons
      for the safety of all concerned 🙂

  5. Dennis the Vizsla

    hello smilecalm its dennis the vizsla dog hay that advice frum mr huxley may be simpel but it seemsl ike peepul shoor do hav trouble following it dont they??? my dada sez he is a littel wurreed abowt the direkshun wot the arc is beeing bent at the moment but fortchoonatly i do not hav to be konsernd abowt sutch things on akkownt of i am a dog and as long as mama and dada ar heer i am happy!!! ok bye

  6. Sunny

    Wonderful, David. I always enjoy what you write, even when my brain whirls with to-dos and receding or approaching problems. May you be peaceful, happy and light in body and spirit today!

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you for such kindness, dear Sunny!
      wishing you moments of calm relaxation.
      i know you do much for others which adds to dos. i’m grateful for your sweet wishes.
      may you be happy 🙂

  7. susanenholm32

    Reflections – looking ahead and looking back. Appropriate that we remain aware of our world, no matter its size. I see our national condition as smoke and mirrors – must stay alert. Thanks, David. You always get us to think.

    1. smilecalm Post author

      smiling to your reflection, susan!
      this post was nothing but mirror
      until you brought up the smoke
      affecting our collective breathing!
      thanks, wishing you peaceful breaths. 🙂

  8. Annika Perry

    A beautiful post, David! Reflecting on our past, present and future – the interconnectedness of all three. The quotations ground your thoughts perfectly – it can be hard to accept that the road is long, especially if it seems we are retracing the past! The photos are superlative – wondrous reflections! Thank you for the reminder from Thich Nhat Hanh that it is not important to arrive at the end of one’s road – just enjoy the journey.

    1. smilecalm Post author

      thank you for such kind words and conveying your capacity
      to enjoy the ride
      wherever it’s heading, dear Annika!
      wishing you a happy moment 🙂

  9. Olga

    Love your post. Yes, one needs to be mindful of the slippery road of reactivity. Insightful last quote since many aim for a future goal and don’t realize that happiness with each moment is the goal. ❤

  10. ashiftinconsciousness

    I stopped driving these dangerous streets.

    I’m on the side of the road as cars whizz by.

    Trying to hang out with the trees and flowers.

    But getting distracted by the whizzing cars. 🙂

    Thanks. 💞


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