Wednesday, January 18, 2006


Our philosophy reading for today's discussion discussed Marx's concern with vocation, essentially, although I don't think that word was used. Marx was good at noticing the problems but not so good, it seems, at finding solutions.

I remember reading Dorothy Sayers on the idea of vocation and how important she thought it was. Are we really that connected with our calling/vocation--with what we do as a "job" or "career"? Is it a matter of life and death--at least spiritual? Sayers seems to think so...and Marx, though dealing with it in an economic rather than spiritual context, at least sees the problems, though he would likely deny the spiritual realities that Sayers would employ to even talk of the matter.

Some of you students seemed to be saying that you thought a person’s vocation determines how others think of that person as well as how that person might think of himself. Is it just that, or does one's vocation actually, in some way, determine who one is? --not just economically or socially, but metaphysically?

father foos+


cherios said...

A wonderful quote from Dorothy Sayers is as follows:

In the world it is called Tolerance, but in hell it is called Despair, the sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and remains alive because there is nothing for which it will die.

If one does not havea vocation, or does and does not live one's vocation, they are trully not living. In order for one to live, one must do do nothing is to live for ntohing, and to live for nothing is to die for nothing...what a sad life, if it can even be called that.

mr_bartel said...

Everything we do shapes our identity. Life demands that we support ourselves somehow and thus the reason for a "job". When we speak of vocation, though, we must see it as more than a means to eat. I guess I am trying to say that we must be passionate about something even if this thing is not how we feed ourselves. In discussing Nietzche and Kierkegaard, we saw that they were, in some senses, reacting against the "paltriness" of 19th century Europe.

Isn't our true vocation that which we love? I am not talking about "eros", but rather that thing which stimulates the creative side of the individual. Does God "Call" us to be passionate about something? Is this the true meaning of vocation? Do Christian vocations have to be missions (a common supposition - even if not directly stated)?