Why Work, the Zen Lectures and Anatheism

This week, from our shelves, a now famous article by Dorothy Sayers, “Why Work?”, more than ever a timely reminder of what a normal relation between man and his work is:

…we should fight tooth and nail, not for mere employment, but for the quality of the work that we had to do. We should clamour to be engaged in work that was worth doing, and in which we could take pride… The greatest insult which a commercial age has offered to the worker has been to rob him of all interest in the end product of the work and to force him to dedicate his life to making badly things which were not worth making.

• One of the most authoritative and concise introductions to Zen and to the heart of the Buddhist way in general, the series of lectures by Yasutani Hakuun Roshi:

The first of the three essentials of Zen practice is strong faith… more than mere belief… a faith that is firmly and deeply rooted, immovable, like an immense tree or a huge boulder… The second indispensable quality is a feeling of strong doubt… From this feeling of doubt the third essential, strong determination, naturally arises, an overwhelming determination to dispel this doubt with the whole force of our energy and will. Believing with every pore of our being in the truth that we are all endowed with the immaculate Bodhi-mind we resolve to discover and experience the reality of this Mind for ourselves.

• And finally by Rupert Sheldrake, “Rediscovering God”, a candid and engaging talk about his own anatheistic path and possibly that of the contemporary scientific paradigm:

Everyone knows what theism is: belief in God. Everyone knows what atheism is: disbelief in God. “Anatheism” means returning to God or going back to God.