Lent words - Day 15 ~ Labour

I've slipped a bit behind with my words...

This one belongs to Wednesday last week and today is Monday... aiming to have got to Friday by close of play today... but as all things... the time to complete was never the point but that the decision to write my thoughts about each word, think and reflect, was.

Today's word I have known about for a few days... and to be honest I struggled with what to write until this morning some inspiration has made the task simple... maybe the universe has my timeline in hand who knows?

I think that the word labour has been abused. There are lots of situations where it is used which may reflect in how it has changed over time. Today labour and work could be substituted for each other with an almost imperceptible difference in the meaning being conveyed and yet it was not always so.

Labour of Love, hard labour, in labour, labour needed, the connotation being that to labour is to do something that is hard. That requires a huge effort... where we are using our own person as a resource to achieve something or other. In the case of "In Labour" simultaneously the hardest labour, the most beautifully creative labour and a lifetime labour of love.

Labour of love... what does this mean... it means to me to do something you would do whether your get paid for it or not, or something you create / do that could never repay in money the effort that has gone into it... Something you would do anyway because the actual act gives you pleasure or you love the results and outcomes of the activity. It isn't about the money, it is all about the passion and love. Bringing up a child is without doubt the greatest Labour of Love. Yet in today's society a 'Labour of Love' is almost treated with derision... and yet when we think about it, the signpost was given to us in the form of caring for our children and is where it all started.

A sad reflection of today's society is that when you are offering a service just because you can, you want to, you are passionate about it, and it makes you happy providing whatever it is... you are looked upon as mad, crazy and people ask... ok... what's the catch? complete scepticism and unwillingness to accept that kindness could be for real... are they really saying... I wouldn't do that if it was me? ... people tell you more about themselves than they realise when you know how to listen.

We have been corrupted in our thinking. Labour has become a commodity...  people have become a commodity... nothing more than a slave doing other people's bidding... and why? ... because we have been conditioned to believe that our value is based on money and possessions, and to have these shiny things we must work and sell ourselves... that is the ultimate lie and curse that we have bought into... and it is keeping us in slavery.

We have bought into the concept that security is a good job and keeping the hamster wheel spinning to pay for the house, kids, debts and a lifestyle that we've been convinced we need... and it all starts when we're young and sold the idea of what a 'good upstanding citizen' should do. Ultimately we become just a number.... to be hired and fired if the numbers don't look right... and money removes the need to build relationships because cold hard money can just pay for it all... no other obligations.

How many now actually do labour in what they love? 

Many who have left the corporate world because they have had an epiphany moment (often at 40 - life begins at 40 ... another myth but some truth) ... what am I doing getting up early travelling for 2 hours, coming home late, tired, fit just to sleep, never seeing my wife, my kids, my house... what am I doing that for? ... so some rich shareholders I never see can have another yacht in the Caribbean... No... I'm not doing it any more... but then the relationship with money becomes both love and hate... and that's a struggle that goes on for ever... until... frugality is realised... the concept of enough... this has been spoken of elsewhere so not today.

Until we break the hold money has over our lives we are never free... until we realise our resources (labour) is enough and we grow in confidence and resilience to understand that whatever life throws at us we can come through it... That's a long journey... but one worth 'LABOURING' on... To do what we are passionate about, what makes us get up in the morning... We are all part of the community and there is something for all of us. Each of us using our skills and talents to enhance community and improve it for all. We weren't put here to be miserable and extorted by others.

Labour is not just to use our arms, legs... lift, carry etc.... it is also to apply our conscious thought, imagination and vision to a challenge. Our brain is amazing... sadly many of us just let it coast away doing little more than manage our bodily functions for us on auto pilot. It is so much more than that. The success of the personal development industry is testimony to the desire to get more out of this incredible device on our shoulders... sadly it requires 'hard labour' to activate it, keep it activated and get it to work for us. It is the biggest muscle we have... it requires huge effort to think... that is why most of us just accept what is done to us... if it is an acceptable combination of comfort / discomfort we are lulled into apathy and sleep and then those who are using their brains (or are on top of a system created by innovative brains of the past) can abuse us wantonly.

To Labour is not just to go to work... 

Rather Labour in the fields of your brain... labour to produce good crops... tend to the fields in the brain... otherwise it will yield weeds... a crop of little value to you or those who might benefit from your service. We are not here to profit from ourselves or from others... perhaps we are here to learn lessons and be the best human being we can be with the talents bestowed upon us... to be the best version of ourselves possible and labour towards that goal... what other goal is there?


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