9 January 2007

Wrestling with Satan

The devil came to me last month and said with complicity:
"Just think, if you work more hours for me, you will make more money and you will be able to buy more things."

- 'More things' I mused, with affected relish.
But the idea of being a slave to my once very materialistic nature did not please me. It was a step backwards. Besides it would imply that there was something terribly wrong with working part time such that one ought to remedy the situation. Whatsmore I could not think of anything that was worth the extra hours of toil, nothing that I absolutely had to buy and for which I would be ready to sacrifice the extra time better spent on writing my precious book.
So I refused.
The book must be written.

Undeterred, the devil came to me last week and said:
"Ok, I will make you a leader. What do you say?"

I did hesitate. As a leader I would be potentially bound to serve more hours...if only to properly assume the additional responsibilities and be a correct team player. The idea displeased me. But it was either this or the potential of having someone else fill that role...
Oh, the shame, to kneel before another in servitude. Perhaps a stranger, someone younger than me or someone less experienced than me. I even went as far as imagining the worst contender for this role, placing my self in the hands of a maniacal bully who would humiliate and taunt me so that I would forever regret turning down that role. This hideous thought unravelled before my eyes, in all its burlesque splendour and aroused nothing but repulsion in someone as proud and independent as me.
But I desisted.
I administered a majestic slap in the face of my ego. Shame on you! Oh, vanity when your grip takes hold of me, I will be but a slave. I want none of it. So be it, if I have to be the humble worker at the bottom of the org chart, worse, the part time worker! I will not be a slave to my own ego as I have been in the past.
So once again, I resisted the devil.

But He is cunning, and He will find another way to tempt me, be sure of that.
The third time will be the worst perhaps.

2 comments:

Lindsay said...

The penalty that good men pay for not being interested in politics is to be governed by men worse than themselves.
Plato (427-347 BCE)

Linds colloarary:

The price good men pay for embracing politics is to inevitiably adopt the techniques of those worse men. The rod still falls across the back of their innocence and virtue. The only difference is that they've chosen to be the ones swinging the rod.

Together they could form an interesting koan around choosing power or turning it down only to have the power used on you. Luck with your Devil dancing, less nuts.

Reuben said...

Feel no shame in working part time.

Many work all their lives, without knowing the pleasures of being part time.. of devoting only some of their time to will of another, and the rest to themselves and their own pursuits.

May I quote, "Poor is the man whose pleasures depend on the permission of another". No doubt, you'll work out where that one comes from, soon enough.