Skip to comments.Man's work is not an end -Bishop Fulton Sheen- From declassified FBI files on Fulton Sheen
Posted on 06/18/2009 7:51:21 PM PDT by stfassisi
Communism glorifies work as the new god to which cult and worship must be paid.Just as democracies since the French revolution have substituted freedom for god and made it the supreme goal to be served,so now communism has made labor the deity which men must adore. Freedom is not the goal of democracy,if freedom is understood as freedom from something.Freedom from something must necessarily be freedom for something.Freedom without law is a license and unlimited freedom eventually ends up in unlimited tyranny. Neither is the work of god,for thieves work and so do beavers,so do gods of soviet concentration camps.There ,therefore must be something besides mere work to distinguish it from animal instincts and crime..That missing element which communists have left out of work is the freedom and value of human personality.
But in order to understand how this has come to pass,it is interesting to compare some views of work throughout the centuries.
The Greeks had little esteem for manual work. Their ethical ideal of a gentleman was one who did not have to work with his hands.Work was a sign of indignity.Heslod held that in the golden age no one worked;it was only when man degenerated that work came into being.Even for Plato the man that worked with hid hands was disqualified for higher service to his country.Aristotle held there could be no true friendship between master and slave.It seemed that reason for looking down on work was because it demanded transformation of raw material.There is a record to the effect that in Thebes a shop keeper could become a magistrate only after 10 years of retirement.
This snobbery and false aristocracy of intellectuals was far below the Old Testament idea of work,which regarded it not only as a necessity and expiation of sin,but also because it was a sign and kinship of God.Six days God labored creating the universe;man by working on the raw material of the universe enters fellowship with God.The rest of the seventh day was not because of weariness,but in order that there might be associated with all work contemplation and worship.
This idea continues in the New Testament where work is sanctified by intention of co-operating with God.Saint Paul says that all things co-operate unto God in those who are called to be saints.He bids man to offer up his work,his recreations and his meals in the name of Christ,in order to gain merit.Our Divine Lord said that even a drink of cold water given in His name would receive a reward a hundred fold. Our Savior thus removed the Greek stigma on work set at naught the ignobility of working on material things by Himself playing the trade of a carpenter.
This review makes it possible to understand what the communists have done with work.Having completely eliminated the Divine and reduced man to matter,work loses all personal significance.A man under communism does not work to perfect himself in his soul,foe communists say he has none,nor to gain merits for the communist there is no future.He is merely a tool to produce more wealth for the state.The communists accuse the capitalists of exploiting labor for their profit;though this may have been done in some instances in a retail fashion,communism exploits worker in a wholesale fashion for the sake of the state.Article 47 of the Soviet labor code says that "The worker who without valid reason,is absent from work for a whole day will be dismissed from his work and will forfeit his lodging".
Democracies can take a warning from this materialism of man. Let it not be thought that man is for production and nothing else,for the Soviet tyranny will be upon us. Rather production is for man.Production is for man's consumption ;mans work is a means and not an end;the purpose of work is not just to enable a man to live,but to enable a man to live virtuously .Man is not made just to work but rather he works because work is an expression of his intelligence made in the image ofGod,and he has inherited this urge from his Maker. In the last resort we work not for the sake of license or weekends or for production,but to honor and worship God
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Bishop Fulton Sheen’s way of seeing the world is the exact opposite of Barney Frank. It’s so refreshing to read something from the mind of a good man - a rarity in these times.
Rush Limbaugh could have delivered these words.
Fulton Sheen’s words are so relevant in today’s world.
This brings back lots of memories - I used to listen to him when I was younger and his sermons/messages were quite popular.
Fulton Sheen’s FBI file:
Long time,......no Sheen........... :-)
God bless Bishop Sheen. He was a great and wonderful man. Would that God sends us a dozen more like him.
You can still listen to him on Relavant RAdio (aka Catholic Radio) across the midwest and on your computer. Go to RelavantRadio.com. Send them a donation while you are at it.
Despite the stereotype of the "lazy socialist" who wants to put everyone on welfare, the entire ideology of the Left is a glorification of toil and drudgery for its own sake. Early American socialist communes (like Brook Farm) were based on the lowest form of manual labor.
In the utopian Communist future Work is the be-all and end-all of everything. All poetry and literature will be superseded by production statistics ("girl meets tractor") and people will be so hopped up about getting up early the next morning to "toil" at the factory that they won't even have sex. "Lazy Communists" my foot! Communist societies shoot "parasites" who don't sing of their ecstasy at scooping and hauling sewage.
As a matter of fact, if work could be replaced with robots and push buttons the Left would probably have to cease to exist.
Unfortunately, there is also a Calvinist/social Darwinist component of the Right that similarly glorifies drudgery and can't sleep at night because people who should be starving to death are receiving welfare/relief of some kind.
We'll all be lucky if the work-idolizing Right and work-idolizing Left don't join forces and criminalize unemployment--perhaps requiring everyone with nothing else to do to merely dig a hole and refill it over and over. Just so the sweat's pouring out.
Reminds me of something Litvinov once said.
When Litvinov was in New York during the depression he was told by the mayor that snow plows had been abandoned in favor of shovels in order to provide more men with work. Litvinov replied...Why don't you give them spoons to insure total employment".
BTW, your post was very good,dear friend.
I wish you a Blessed day!
Since we're deindistrializing at a rapid rate, this may not be too far off the mark.
BTW, your post was very good,dear friend.
I didn't know you cared!
Curious about the response?
My grandmother was a very religious Christian woman. My mother told me how Gram would always tune in to Bishop Fulton J. Sheen's broadcasts, even though she was not a Catholic.
I'm not quite so religious as Gram... really not religious at all, to be honest, but whenever I see old broadcasts on the television set while changing channels, I definately stop and watch the remainder of the show. He was THE BEST!
Here is a paragraph from the FBI files that I wanted to transcribe just to show part of the strong character of this great man: (from page 14 of http://foia.fbi.gov/sheen_f/sheen_f_part02.pdf
Thanks for digging that up from way back...
One of the pages voices concern that +Sheen would cast a pall upon our wartime ally Russia. That shows how easy it was for some people to turn a blind eye to the Soviets.
So much great information in these files, thanks for posting.