Work versus Leisure


Caspar_David_Friedrich_-_Wanderer_above_the_sea_of_fog (1)

Image: Wanderer Above the Sea painting by Caspar David Friedrich from Google Images.

Work, business, profit, those words are omnipresent in our life. We are always more confined in a performance and asset contest. We rest to work, we work to achieve better performance, and unfortunately sometimes this become the main goal of our existence and finally we consider that the leisure days or even the holidays are made only to store energy in order to achieve a better performance at work. But when we really think about it: what is the real meaning of vacation and the real importance of leisure in our life?

The main reason of that reflection is because we are aware of the fact that the human being cannot blossom and find a fulfilment only through work. Indeed, Man needs to achieve meaningful actions in his life. These meaningful actions permit his liberation and his elevation; they are the food for his soul. The best way to achieve this objective is not through work but through leisure. During leisure days we have time to enter in this specific mindset of contemplation, to foster our capacity to perceive the reality of the nature, and this contemplation permits us to understand the real propose of our life on earth.

The contemplation permits to touch the core of all things, and this is what gives meaning, a real understanding of the activities we carry. Leisure is also the best way to understand who we are, what we want and where we go: the fundamental questions in our life. Once Leisure really permits us to grasp the response of our whole existence, it permits us to be free it means to take the right decision toward our existence.

Leisure allows us to take time for religious meditation, philosophical reflection, and admiration of the creation (flowers, nature) or artistic works that permit us to grasp the essence of all things, of the reality. When through an action we understand the essence of reality, then we achieved a meaningful activity. The particular attitude of acceptance is also fundamental in this achievement. However, for an activity to be meaningful, it requires certain conditions like a specific mindset and physical disposition. It is important to have the capacity to listen and to observe which involves an attitude of openness and silence.

The contemplation of the arts gives us an excellent illustration of what a meaningful activity is. The arts must be the reflection of the observation and contemplation of the universal value and realities. If art respects those elements, it is in accordance with the truth and the contemplation of the truth liberates the human being. It permits him to understand the purpose of his life and gives him a goal to achieve.

We then understand that work is necessary to ensure a proper material life to the Man. We also understand that leisure days are fundamental to ensure the human being the possibility to find fulfillment and real meaning of his life on earth.


Written by Cecile Carron, a current WYA HQ intern  from Switzerland.