The subject of work and working hours is occupying so...

The Christian Science Monitor

The subject of work and working hours is occupying so large a place now in the world's regard that every one is obliged, willy-nilly, to pay some attention to the matter. Hitherto it has been part of the accepted state of things that there should be a working class and a leisured class, and the majority have been content to leave it at that, but such a condition of nonchalance is no longer possible, and for many reasons a large number of persons, not without surprise, find themselves not only having to think about it but actually having to do work that had formerly been done for them. What is still more of a surprise to many is that once having learned the joy of work, they dread returning to their prewar state of idleness or leisure.

Now in the first place, what is this thing called work, and why is there such a tremendous upheaval about it today? Work is the energy of production, and the reason of the trouble about it to-day is that the carnal mind, or mortal mind, as Mrs. Eddy calls it, has misunderstood and misinterpreted the nature of work, just as it has misinterpreted everything else in human experience. Instead of work being considered the privilege of every human being, the whole question has been debased on to the plane of drudgery, and we have the melancholy pictures of slaves and bondmen and misery and depression all down the ages until this hour. Now, however, through the action of the spiritual idea, or Christ, everything existing in consciousness is being forced into the light for the purpose of readjustment, and that the readjustment of this particular thing, work, is part of the trouble foretold by Jesus as a necessary purging before the second coming off the Son of man, there can be no doubt when we see, as we are forced to, that it touches the very foundations of human society.

That work, or the energy of production, is a normal condition and need of the average human being, is evident, for if one leaves a child of four or five years old to amuse himself, in a few minutes he will be making a train, or a cart, or a motor car, out of an old box and a bit of string, and be busy inventing imaginary wheels and levers for any length of time. A child dislikes being idle more than anything else in the world, and is always asking for "something to do." The story of the woman whose idea of heaven was "a place where one would do nothing for ever and ever," only serves to show how entirely perverted the idea of work has become by custom.

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