Posted by: Philip Carr-Gomm | November 26, 2007

Druids call for a return of the Sabbath

Yesterday was a Sunday and yet all day we had a crew replacing telegraph poles outside our house and a fencer popped round to give us an estimate for a new fence. It suddenly struck me that 4 or 5 years ago this never would have happened – no-one would have done this kind of work on a Sunday.  I think it’s all part of the creeping invasion of our leisure time by work. I’ve read about the fact that in the USA people are working longer and longer hours just to  keep afloat – and I think it’s happening in Britain now too. Last week I talked to a woman who holds down three jobs, in the last year Stephanie and I have been working most evenings and weekends, and I’ve noticed that everyone is busier around us – there are less and less social engagements as our friends have less and less free time.

As part of broad social trends this is troubling – the Big Brother state observes us more and more, we work harder and harder – they both diminish our sense of freedom.

It’s about time there was a return to the Sabbath – when you could be prosecuted for selling an egg on a Sunday!


Responses

  1. IS it about being satisfied with that we need to live a comfortable life – rather than what we think we want….. the latest i-something, flatscreen that latest clothes…? And here in NZ it seems the most popular past-time is “shopping”… go figure – I’m off to sit by the Manawatu River and watch the water flow by..

  2. I remember enjoying so much the uncrowded feel of New Zealand – walking along miles of empty beaches and so on Tom. Then one Sunday I popped into the Mall in Porirua and discovered where everybody was. What a shock! What a place to spend your Sunday!! But at least it keeps the beaches clear!

  3. Oh no! Do not say that in NZ everybody thing only to “shopping”!!! We thought there is a land of nature and so on!… But yes, if in the same time beachs are very clears, tant mieux! Ouf!
    Here each sunday all the beachs and the coast is plenty of people : that’s a good thing from one hand, but to the other hand, WE cannot have a “sunday” at sunday, because WE just want to be fast alone on beach and along the coast!
    Myrdhin and me are lucky because we can just decide that one day in the week can be a “sunday” ( because we had work many times in week-end or sunday or holidays from other people) we decided that some years ago, because we realize that we are more and more “working” (but is it a “real work? – a spiritual one, I mean?)
    So, do sunday when you like, or just one hour or two, that’s delicieous outer a “real” sunday” too!

  4. Yes it is sad – but there are still many of us here in NZ who do like the beach, bush walks or just plain sitting in the back garden watching the birds play. And there is still lots of sports played (I think the NZ has recovered from being beaten at Rugby by the French!! – I think…) and lots of other outdoors activity. I think it really is the choice of have quality time with your spiritual journey at when even feels right. All part of living a “Simple” life (currently reading “The Lilypad List – Seven steps to a simple life” by Marian Van Eyk McCain – the first step is that there is nothing wrong with your present life – so stop the blame game (ummm easier said than done 🙂 )
    Back to my coffee and the lovely red flowers outside my office window.

  5. I am told that even the French work 35 hours EVERY WEEK! This is scandalous. As a journalist I try to pace myself and never, ever exceed 35 hours a month…

  6. I guess the problem would be how to define that people take their leisure break. For many it’s about getting away from it all, for walking in the woods… not everyone can walk/cycle there, so they need to drive – so that means petrol stations, the AA or similar (should you need them).

    For others its about using the web, or the telephone, to contact friends, relatives etc. If that technology fails, then someone needs to fix it – and the adage that it can wait until Monday only works if there is enough staff to fix it all Monday. Typically our IT service desk is most busy on a Monday….

    I think the focus shouldn’t be on which day we don’t work, but ensuring that there is a work/life balance. The bigger issue is that of working too long hours – and it is a fault with society now that to get to what is considered a reasonable standard of living the jobs/hours etc all get longer and harder.

  7. It came that : in the Bible, for the world creation, at the seventh day, it said “et Dieu se reposa et vit que…etc…” (and God had some rest and saw what he did etc…?) But another version is “and God meditate about what he did the 6 days before. I think a “sun-day” could be this day when we meditate about what we did all the others days,no?


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