Work is such a daily concern, a common reality, a universal venture that its inherent meaning and ingrained implications are either overlooked or undermined. Certain simple questions are then in good order. The objective reality and truth is that the precious and fundamental import of work is the affirmation and promotion of human dignity, over and above its over-all material benefits or financial gains which, nevertheless have their own merit. It is curious, fascinating, and inspiring to find out that the reality of work engages man as a composite potential – such as in terms of the following:
a. Mind. Just as the mind holds the supremacy in the nature of man as a whole, so it is that the human mind tells him he has to work, what to work for, what to work with – and the like. Yes, it is his stomach that tells man he is hungry. It is his body that tells him he is naked. But it is his mind that makes man know what are his needs that should be satisfied, that makes him conscious of his different wants that should be responded to.
b. Intelligence. In its common understanding, intelligence is the prime quality of the mind. While knowledge by itself is associated with the human mind, nevertheless, analysis, appreciation, and other rational and reasonable functions are predicated upon intelligence. To work really well, to work more appropriately, to work more productively – these are in the domain of intelligence, which is definitely much more than simply knowing.
c. Will. As it is the mind that acquires knowledge, it is its qualifying feature of intelligence that comes about with analytic understanding. But then, it is the human will that is the motor of doing what is right and avoiding what is wrong. Needless to say, there are a good number of “dos” and “don’ts” about work – all of which have much relevance to what work should be done or otherwise, when and how to work or stop working.
d. Strength. While mere mental gymnastics, purely academic pursuits, philosophical studies, and other speculative pursuits may be done by the human mind with its qualifying intelligence, needless to say, work as such also requires physical strength. This in turn depends on muscular vigor – together with all its accompanying physiological elements. Physical work presumes biological strength: One without the other cancels one another.
e. Skill. While there are multi-billion workers all over the global from all races, colors, and creeds, it can be said that no two of them are absolutely alike – not only in terms of their knowledge, intelligence, and will power, but also in terms of their respective skills. Dexterity, ingenuity, proficiency, and other capabilities – all these are in the sphere of skill. And needless to say, the more skillful a worker is, the more productive and appreciated he becomes. Skill is something personal and unique.
Work is a multi-faceted complex reality – contrary to what most people merely take for granted as a matter of fact. It can be thus said with a certain levity that work is like a canned good whose contents and taste are not known unless it is opened, tasted and eaten. Skilled workers – they are a blessing to capital, to production, to consumption.