From when we first put our longboats into the sea, have we been traders. Traders of fur, traders of coin, traders of commerce. Time has honed this skill to an almost perfect method containing transactions through immensely advanced systems of computing, satellite controlled navigation and radio transferred pay. But it all started with that longboat with its dragonhead at the front to steer through waters of wrath to our star navigated destination. We are sailors first, clad in the eternal robe of industry and tradesmanship.

When did it actually reach a point where we did break some of our ancient lore of commerce? I think it was when we were industrialized. I am an avid fan of the greatest writer in English; Joseph Conrad. His tales and yarns are crafted and based on the knowledge of the old ways of sailing. In one of his works he tells a story about the change that led to where we are today, and the price we did pay.

It is about a man of sea. His whole life he had roamed the seven stormbruised seas of the world. His all movements were a testimony to the rolling and the skimming of the boats, he walked in a rapid fashion, suited to move on deck. Gliding and stepping as a dancer on a backlit stage of ballet.

Now, the sailor had to get ashore, and leave the proud vessel propelled by the wind of the earth, because he was forced. He went to the shed where they register the seamen when they leave their ships, leaving not a name, but a simple cross, because he had no skill in writing.

The world broke when he looked back on the ship he had just left. It lay there with its towering masts. The world broke, because his ship was to be wrecked, and cut into pieces. It was not profitable anymore. The woodplanks, the knowledge of sailing propelled by the wind was a knowledge forfeit, not usable anymore, old skills, used only by drunken and lonely seamen in boats of no commercial value. He was put ashore by progress. By industry.

Now these new ideas invented by Newton, combining Egyptian mathematics and Greek physicism, was not anything he knew, but he could see, that his ship was not sailing anymore, and he was not employed.

What he lost, and we with him, was more that just the beauty of sailing, it was the traditions, the spirit, the feeling of being a part of something greater, something more. The ships of today are huge factories, the shipping is the calculation of data send from here to there.

What I am trying to say is; we need to realize, that industrialization has a backside, that is, that the spirit of our culture is giving way to efficiency. We need to remember the spirit. We need to know why we do things. Is it just because we are trapped like hamsters in a wheel, running endlessly without aim? Or is it because there is a reason to our life?

The reason lies in spirit. It is the love that binds us together, the caring of one another. This is also a point to consider in commerce. As the ancient sailors did on their woodenmade dragon raiders; they did care for home, for each other, for the wellbeing of their states, so should we today.

G-d bless the spirit of the ancients.

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  1. December 15th, 2012 at 13:21 | #1

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  2. December 6th, 2014 at 21:07 | #2

    Jе suis clairement du même avis que vous

  3. December 6th, 2014 at 22:25 | #3

    Je vaiѕ dire que ce n’est nullement erroné !!!

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