WORK IS WORSHIP
Why do you feel detached from the work you do? Why do you always think about going out on a long ride, taking a break? Why are you on the edge of your seat by the time its closing hours of the day? Why do you feel overburdened by the Sisyphean task of working? Karl Marx , one of the early 19th century theorists, sociologists and philosopher had stated that it was because you felt a certain sense of detachment a lack of involvement with the work you do because you are not part of the direct benefits that it provides. Either you are not doing the work that enhances your inner talents to thrive or you are doing the work due to economic and social constraints. This will eventually lead us to feel unhappy, discontented and detached from our work space. We open the gates toward ‘Alienation’.
Most people that we come across often complain that they don’t feel a sense of freedom at the work place, that they don’t enjoy they work that they do this is primarily because you were never told that there is one such thing called choice. You can choose to do what you do. Let me explain this simply by narrating the common man’s story. You were born to a certain social class, caste and religion ( no choice whatsoever) depending on this background you had a certain style of parenting, a different set of fundamental values, morals and ethics which you followed without a choice. Your parents sent you to a particular educational institution based on their financial status. You had to study subjects taught without a choice. By the time you are an adolescent your parents ( your entire family, the community you live with) make it crystal clear that you are to do the ‘respectable job’. Succumbing to the societal pressure you choose to follow the path everybody chooses. You study a ‘respectable degree’, you get a respectable job’, you marry a ‘respectable spouse’ and you live a ‘respectable life’.
Ever took a minute to think whether you really enjoyed what you did? Did you choose to do this because you loved it? The same goes with the work you do.
Calvinist protestants believe that work is a form of worship. Everything you do ought to be done with complete conscience because everything you do is work. While I studied about Calvinist protestants, I found something very interesting about the way they live. They never take a day-off. They did what they did because they chose to do so. Vacations were for those that disrespected the work they did. They see their work as the most contending and exhilarating moment of their lives. They hate taking a day-off!
I wouldn’t recommend that you practise workaholic behaviour. My question would be: Do you want to do the work you are doing because you feel attached to it? To those who think they do not have a choice:don’t regret what you are doing you have fated yourself to do the work you are doing and you have decided to stay for several reasons, then try to enjoy the work that you do. Try to feel content that you are bone-tired when you fall asleep.
The work you do must liberate you, the work you do must make you feel like you can’t wait for the day to begin, the work you do be done as passionately as Mozart composed his Symphony and Michelangelo his David. The work you do must make you feel like you are on your vacation. The work you do must make you feel addicted to what you do like Newton’s addiction to force. Most importantly, the work you choose to do, which you are consciously doing be perceived the way I elaborated in the latter lines.
N.B: drawing reference to Calvinists from ‘The Protestant Ethics and The spirit of Capitalism ‘- Max Weber.