“The Transformation of Work”- Work as a Spiritual Practice by Richmond

Actual Text 1: “When we believe that the world makes us, that it determines what we can do and cannot do, then we see ourselves as small and weak. But when we understand that we make the world- individually and together- then we become formidable and strong.” (Page 2)
Response 1: These were the first words I read from the article. It set the stage for me in regards to my thought process. I was confused at first upon reading that the world makes us. We are always told that we make the world go round but it almost seems quite the opposite here. We allow the world to control us by anxiety, insecurities, fear of failure, etc. We let the world at times take over our actions and take charge of what is next to come. Richmond says that when we allow the world to overcome us and take control we become “small and weak”. Speaking from personal experience, this is nothing but true. My anxieties make me fell this exact way. The second part of the quote is more uplifting. The moment we understand that we “make” the world, both on our own and with help from others, we are given a sense of strength and hope for the future. I am confused by what “make” means in this context…

Actual Text 2: “We are the wealthiest generation in human history, but are we the wisest? And what will happen now that everyone else in the world wants to be just like us, with our three televisions, two cars, and a personal monthly energy bill greater than the annual income per capita of some poor countries? Can the planet sustain us, or are the three-legged frogs now cropping up in the fresh-water ponds all over America one of many warning signs that it cannot?" (Page 5)
Response 2: I really enjoyed both the bluntness and discreteness of this quote. Starting with saying we are the wealthiest generation in human history was not new news for me. This has been a common theme in our course. What did strike me by surprise was that everyone in the world wants what we have. This is quite disturbing because countless individuals who do have all this stuff mentioned above are not any happier with these material objects. These objects are just objects but fill this bizarre craving that many of us have. We lust for these objects and it’s disgusting. The energy bill comment was very shocking and I almost didn’t want to believe it. The end of the quote asks the reader if the planet can sustain us and gives an analogy of a three-legged frog becoming more common in fresh-water ponds. To me this was the part of the quote that has a discrete meaning. It was alluding to the facts that if we keep consuming and flourishing in our own wealth, where will the rest of the world be? We can see clear signs of an abusive relationship with nature and there will come a time where she will not be so giving, and will become fed up. I am surprised this has not already happened…

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