With Fire We Test the Gold II

A year ago I wrote a piece with the same title. Recently, a comment came to that piece that suggested this follow-up. The premise I was exploring is whether our own skills, the modern gold, become also our test. If we classify economic classes by: poverty is below basic need; lower class is basic needs but nil excess; Middle class is small to moderate excess to needs; and upper class is vast excess to needs, then we can apply such definition to our own skills. Many people, for example, have skill in excess to the job they perform. Many middle class people have excess hours. Is the spiritual test about what we are doing with our excess abilities and resources? Do we continue to add financially rewarding work to our time? Or do we spend that time in pursuits that build community and nation? What if the financially rewarding pursuits are also overtly valuable in building community or nation? Might it not be important to do other things, for their spiritual worth? I am not suggesting a clear cut answer. Honest exploration of the dilemma must be part of the spirtitual enterprise. The question then arises, how do we engage that honest exploration, with our family, friends, business and professional colleagues? What do we do when we see another person moving laterally in life, reducing their financially rewarding activities for human development activities? Do we discourage? Do we encourage? Do we leave to themselves? Do we use the opportunity to learn more about them and ourselves? Aren’t our responses to others also key to our spiritual development?
And I wonder, whether, if we are honest with our engagement, even if we can’t always get the practical answers to our liking, we find pathways and solutions that we never thought we would, and gradually engender a whole new economic system.
Which suggests in full circle, that our inability to view our trade, resources, skill, savings, from the spiritual perspectives, is potentially damaging to the development of trade, resources, skills, and wealth building.

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