The Catholic Church has issued a set of ’10 driving commandments’. See the BBC news report, or the full text of the document (warning: quite lengthy). The document also talks about prostitution, street children and the homeless.
There are of course humourous aspects to a document such as this, but overall I think that it is a very good initiative. Well done to the Catholics. I think that Christians generally would do well to reflect on how they conduct themselves on the roads. The following section from paragraphs 25 and 26 resonated:
The domination instinct, or the feeling of arrogance, impels people to seek power in order to assert themselves. Driving a car provides an easy opportunity to dominate others. Indeed, by identifying themselves with their car, drivers enormously increase their own power. This is expressed through speed and gives rise to the pleasure of driving. This makes drivers wish to experience the thrill of speed, a typical manifestation of their increased power.
The free availability of speed, being able to accelerate at will, setting out to conquer time and space, overtaking, and almost “subjugating” other drivers, turn into sources of satisfaction that derive from domination.
Cars particularly lend themselves to being used by their owners to show off, and as a means for outshining other people and arousing a feeling of envy. People thus identify themselves with their cars and project assertion of their egos onto them. When we praise our cars we are, in fact, praising ourselves, because they belong to us and, above all, we drive them. Many motorists, including the not so young, boast with great pleasure of records broken and high speeds achieved, and it is easy to see that they cannot stand being considered as bad drivers, even though they may acknowledge that they are.
[Being a campervan driver “the free availability of speed, being able to accelerate at will” is a slightly foreign concept, but that is an aside.]
A good summary of the driving 10 commandments:
Those who know Jesus Christ are careful on the roads. They don’t only think about themselves, and are not always worried about getting to their destination in a great hurry. They see the people who “accompany” them on the road, each of whom has their own life, their own desire to reach a destination and their own problems. They see everyone as brothers and sisters, sons and daughters of God. This is the attitude that characterises a Christian driver.
[PS. Thanks for the contributions to my cartoon ideas thread below. Please don’t stop!]