"Modern conveniences might save people from tedious labor, but they could do nothing to assuage the sense of being in a precarious position in a rapidly changing world. Instead of feeling carefree, many people felt burdened with more and more "necessities," until they were less able to distinguish between needs and wants, between self-indulgence and self-respect. They became, in short, perfect consumers.
Our politicians are fond of telling us we live in a "free country." But they less often invite us to consider what our freedom consists of and what it is for. In asking those questions we touch on a great dissonance in American culture. In her essay "Keeping the Sabbath," Dorothy Bass observes that"in Deuteronomy the commandment to 'observe the Sabbath day' is tied to the experience of a people newly released from bondage. Slaves cannot take a day off; free people can."In that light, how many in the world are free? The poor can't risk losing a day of fishing or farming or factory work. The sweatshop manager doesn't provide time off for illness or leisure. And the rich are reluctant to put the brakes on a society that offers such great rewards for greed, ambition, and workaholic habits that erode the spirit." ---Kathleen Norris from "Acedia & Me", pp.122-123 [Emphasis added by me.]
Just something to think about. How free are we, really? I know that relative to other countries we certainly are in many ways (we are SO free!), but not in others (how can you be really free if you can't afford health care for your children? or when you are a slave to your work and you don't even realize it!?!?!). What do you think?
I'm off for the rest of the day to get my teeth cleaned and then hire a new receptionist for LoveHubbie. Tonight I've promised myself I'm going to have blow-out wild and crazy fun. For me, that means reading fiction :) I'm been abstinent for way too long.
I'd like to get some discussion going here as well, too. So...what do you think?