Monday, September 07, 2009

Labor and interconnectedness

One of the key principles of the meditative tradition is that we are not really separate; we are all connected. When you think about it, this is what the labor movement historically has been all about:

Years ago I recognized my kinship with all living things, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on the earth. I said then and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it; while there is a criminal element, I am of it; while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.
If the workers took a notion they could stop all speeding trains;
Every ship upon the ocean they can tie with mighty chains.
Every wheel in the creation, every mine and every mill;
Fleets and armies of the nation, will at their command stand still.
Although it is true that only about 20 percent of American workers are in unions, that 20 percent sets the standards across the board in salaries, benefits and working conditions. If you are making a decent salary in a non-union company, you owe that to the unions. One thing that corporations do not do is give out money out of the goodness of their hearts.
I would like to recommend that we all make a special effort to devote some time today to Lovingkindness Practice - for the sake of workers who are oppressed and for the sake of all who are engaged in the struggle for basic fairness for the ordinary laborer. For that matter, let us do the practice also for those who stand in opposition to fairness and justice for the working person. They too experience pain and suffering and need the benefit of our kindness. Without it, how will their hearts ever be moved?

No comments:

Post a Comment

New policy: Anonymous posts must be signed or they will be deleted. Pick a name, any name (it could be Paperclip or Doorknob), but identify yourself in some way. Thank you.