Exploring Human Potential

7 & 7: Rest vs. Restless


Rest is more than meets the shuttered eye. It is the shuttered eye. It is the great counter-balance for labor, pain and discontent. It is the promise of a fresh start, a second chance with each new day. It is fullness, not absence, more a filling of reserves than shedding of responsibility. Just like labor, rest deserves our careful consideration and for many it is the greater challenge – how to relax, enjoy, refresh, stay young. Rest is one pillar of a body’s rhythm, a marker between day and night, a measure between work and not work. Spare moments are precious but can be wasted on the unappreciative. The appreciation comes in measure to the work it interrupts. To relax begs the reasonable question, “Relax from what?” If not from something true and worthwhile, from something that required effort, is the rest required or deserved? Good rest and good work make a peaceful death at last a lovely recognition. The restless may travel far to service discontent, to find themselves only in the end at home where the journey began. Lie down. Cool down. Rest easy. And if possible drag rest out a little longer than you think you should.


Sleep that knits up the raveled sleeve of care,
The death of each day’s life, sore labour’s bath,
Balm of hurt minds, great nature’s second course, chief nourisher in life’s feast.
Shakespeare, ‘Macbeth’

To be able to fill leisure intelligently is the last product of civilization.
Arnold Toynbee

Each morning sees some task begun
Each evening sees it close.
Something attempted, something done,
Has earned a night’s repose.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Guard well your spare moments. They are like uncut diamonds. Discard them and their value will never be known. Improve them and they will become the brightest gems in a useful life.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

I hope to work, support my children and die quietly without pain.
Sean Connery

A man travels the world in search of what he needs and returns home to find it.
George Moore

One -If your stomach disputes you, lie down and think cool thoughts. Two – Keep the juices flowing by jangling around gently as you move. Three – Go very lightly on the vices such as carrying on in society. The social ramble ain’t restful.
Satchel Paige

How beautiful it is to do nothing, and then rest afterwards.
Spanish proverb

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