An Essay on Laziness
Today we rather intended to write an essay on Laziness, but were too indolent to do so.
Christopher Morley was an American journalist, novelist, essayist and poet. Among his works there is one which I particularly found amusing; it’s his essay on laziness. On the one hand, the essay is charmingly eloquent (like much of his other writings), and on the other, it offers some interesting arguments to persuade the reader to embrace laziness as a virtue. In fact, Morley suggests that we must be proud of it, not ashamed.
But, how is laziness good, you would ask?
Morley has the answer. Whichever way you look at the world, you get into trouble not because of laziness but lack of it. If you didn’t do much, you wouldn’t run into any troubles; as a matter of fact, you wouldn’t run at all. If you are really, thoroughly and philosophically slothful, you will be a happy soul. That’s the secret. But nobody will ever tell you that. The lazy ones are too lazy to share this wisdom and not-so-lazy ones are not happy. And we must point out that it’s only the happy souls that can truly make this world a happier place, not those fractious, frustrated faces.
A lazy man’s life
Morley suggests that the lazy man is one of the greatest poets in the world; one of the keenest satirists; one of the most rectilinear thinkers. It’s just that he is not actively engaged in these activities. Why? Well, he has his own way of looking at life. But, it wasn’t always the case.
The lazy man began life in the customary hustling way. He was always too busy to enjoy himself. He became surrounded by eager people who came to him to solve their problems. "It's a queer thing," he said sadly; "no one ever comes to me asking for help in solving my problems." Finally the light broke upon him. He stopped answering letters, buying lunches for casual friends and visitors from out of town, he stopped lending money to old college pals and frittering his time away on all the useless minor matters that pester the good-natured. He sat down in a secluded café with his cheek against a seidel of dark beer and began to caress the universe with his intellect.
It’s a superpower!
What do superheroes do? They protect the world and its people against all evils. If only Nazis had been lazy during the 1930s and 40s, they would have saved millions of lives. By refusing to participate in any affairs, you make sure that you don’t participate in evil either. As long as you are lazy, you’re not going to stand in the way of progress. You don’t bother anyone. You simply adhere to the religion of peace. And that’s not bad, right?
The truth is, we’ve always envied our lazy friends; how little it takes for them to be happy. Is it time for us to embrace laziness as well? Maybe, we’ll see tomorrow.
Originally published at https://kalampedia.org on April 27, 2022.