Labor Day, a public holiday designed in honor of working people, in the U.S. and Canada on the first Monday in September, traditionally marked with family picnics and other outings, is becoming increasingly marred throughout the nation and the world with fires, floods and various forms of warring mentality headlining the news at home and abroad, including the closely associated “911” attacks.
This year, however our attention span has been eclipsed by raging fires and floods in various parts of the nation to such extent it almost appears that God is mad at us–perhaps justifiably so.
Through the years, however, highly advanced science and technology have changed the face of labor, replacing many workers with sophisticated machines, computers, etc. In ancient times as in some current situations, the term labor was closely associated with slavery as victorious men and nations often made slaves of prisoners captured in war as well as for other reasons. Tens of thousands of people were also born in slavery. How drastically different is the concept of labor in this new Day of God through the Revelation of Baha’u’llah, the Baha’i Faith, that elevates labor to the station of prayer when done in the right spirit.
In this New Day of God work, the arts, sciences and crafts are all considered as worship when performed to the best of one’s ability while conscientiously concentrating all of one’s forces on perfecting it, not for one’s own profit or glory but for the benefit of mankind!
The big-3 key components in freeing us from today’s self-imposed slavery are Knowledge, Volition and Action! With unlimited knowledge readily available literally at our fingertips on any given subject, ignorance and illiteracy are inexcusable! Yet one must voluntarily seek that knowledge, and having obtained it, take Voluntary Action upon such. Knowledge of the fact that nourishing physical and spiritual food is mandatory for a healthy physical and spiritual being is insufficient of itself. One must take voluntary action toward its realization for any benefit to derive from it–for one’s self or for others.
In the Holy Bible it is written: “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom (born of knowledge), but with all thy getting, get understanding”–through spiritual perception which is impossible without some spiritual connection to help guide one’s moral compass.
“It is not desirable that a man be left without knowledge or skills,” state the Baha’i Holy Writings for a progressively maturing mankind, “for he is then but a barren tree. Then, so much as capacity and capability allow, ye must deck the tree of being with fruits such as knowledge, wisdom, spiritual perception and eloquent speech!” What could possibly distinguish one more in this day than eloquent speech, knowledge, volition and ACTION?– the truest Labor of Love–of one’s Creator and of His creation!