Essay No. 196:
The Use And Abuse Of Leisure: The word ‘leisure’ means freedom form occupation. It shows one’s ease convenience or moments of relaxation in life. When one is free form employment, one gets some moments of rest or relaxation. By repeating a work time and again, one becomes bored. A technician doing job over and again develops boredom and monotony.
Machines make a person dull who beings to yearn moments of relaxation. Iqbal had rightly observed that machines do not have a soul of their own which impart a feeling of ennui and weariness to those who work upon them. The following Urdu verse is relevant to quote in the given context:
ہے دل کے لئے موت مشینوں کی حکومت
احساسِ مروت کو کچل دیتے ہیں آلات
[The reign of machines is a death-knell to human heart. the instruments cripple the feelings of human compassion.]
Those work on machines, develop in themselves the trait of coldness, indifference, monotony and listlessness. Doing a work mechanically and repeating it time and again, creates in workers a sense of boredom. They need an outlet to escape the ill-effects of accumulated monotony of workers. Factories provide holiday to workers to was off the week-long monotony.
Government officials also get a holiday in a week. The idea is to provide some relief to the overworked nerves of workers. There are different form of leisure. The rich in the developed countries go to foreign countries to see their culture, historical monuments. It enriches their mind. Travel is a best source of education.
Some like to visit some picnic spots to enjoy nature in Pakistan, those who can afford to go to hill stations go over there to spend some time in the company of nature. The poor man’s luxury lies in playing cards to drink off the worries of the life momentarily. The gamblers indulge in gambling. In brief there are different channels of recreation available to different people both in the developed and underdeveloped countries.
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There is no denying the fact that man on account of his excessive material pre occupations yearns for moments of leisure to sooth his overworked nerves. Ghalib opines on the issue under reference in the following couplet:
جی ڈھونڈتا ہے پھر وہی فرصت کے رات دن
بیٹھے رہیں تصور جاناں کئے ہوئے
[One yearns for moments of relaxation one feels like sitting calmly conjuring up the vision of one’s beloved.]
Leisure is a must in the life of man. He must have it in one from or the other. Excessive leisure also creates dullness in life. Those who indulge in socially undesirable activities make a bad use of their leisure. Those who are given to leisure in life would not like to do any activity pleasant or unpleasant. It is observed that sons of landlords are overfond of hunting.
They pursue it most fondly to the exclusion of other activities which could help them earn some income. They mostly depend upon the wealth of their forefathers. They do not earn wealth themselves and they are pre-occupied with different leisurely pursuits. Too much of leisure is not desirable. It takes man off the hard realities of life. Leisure if utilized well can be a great tranquilizer in life.