He also used the term “business.” It is my understanding that dialogue must begin with a mutual agreement in language; it is also my understanding that this activity is a trick by method and most often prolongs discourse ad infinitum.
However, when he said “business,” in regards to faith, community, and “good (as referring to a common good or truth),” it was as if I suddenly looked down at my hand to reveal a splinter which had long skinned over, a microscopic chuck of wood which at the time could not be easily removed by tweezers or pins, of that my wonder imagines other wooden masses like the remaining rotted planks of a boat which had been long stranded. The wood is moist and flakes off to the touch exposing mold, cob-webbery, and beetle bugs – an infestation of infinitesimal organisms breaking down the integrity of the structure long after the vessel’s purpose lost proper function.
I would claw at the shard, but I am resigned to recall its place notwithstanding its lingering hazard – and to scratch and dig it out in plain view would surely repel my neighbors, distracting them from the simple introductions taking place.
But I think to myself, “He cannot mean business.”
Referencing Thoreau and Tolstoy, the latter seeming a more appropriate source, I would pose the pieces of this question: is it business to clothe the world, or rather to clothe only those involved in the business of clothing the world? When I think of the word business, I see busy-ness – you see now that which Aaron and assumedly Tolstoy would refer to as our universal lack of labor. Our work, of which has the utmost impact on our individual well being, has been long disenfranchised. We are most certainly busy, but what are we busy with? What are we busy doing, daily? And as an effect, what are we busy being?
The negative connotation of “business” would then be the latter end of the initial question. The effect of business would be singular gain, reducing community to a fuel. I have become highly sensitive to this term in regards to art and tend to be the most defensive, sprung to action, and ultimately, scared.
“I put down my sword and shield, down by the riverside.”
The final piece of Burnt Norton this year was a conversation I had late last night with a friend who now resides in