Sacred Sundays - 04/23/14
I remember when I was growing up, nothing was open on Sundays.... I mean nothing. I realize I'm really dating myself by writing this blog, but I really long for the days of old. Blue laws were in full effect and nobody seemed to mind---- Wouldn't you know it... we all seemed to survive til Monday with what we had on hand.
Nowadays, just about everything's open on Sundays and just about everything's open on holidays. It seems there's no occasion, holiday or religious commemoration that trumps the almighty dollar.
I was pleasantly surprised however, when we pulled into a parking lot during our travels on Easter Sunday to see the Jet's pizza closed. You see in the picture, the 'OPEN' sign is turned off. Yay for Jets. Yay for Costco & Target which were also closed. And Double Yay for Hobby Lobby & Chick-fil-A which are closed every Sabbath.
Regardless of your religious leanings, shutting things down for a day is good for the soul. A day of rest invigorates us and helps us return to our tasks with new vision and creativity... refreshed and ready to tackle what lies ahead. Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Baha'i, ... it seems all religions place importance on a day of rest.
Believe it or not, some countries still get this. Shops in Belgium are only allowed to open about 9 designated Sundays a year.
In Norway, gas stations, small flower nurseries and small grocers (Not Superstores) are allowed to open on Sundays.
Switzerland is the strictest of them all. Federal labor law doesn't allow stores to operate on Sunday. There are a few small shops in touristy areas that can open, but for the most part... the Swiss are closed for business on Sundays.
Leonardo da Vinci said, "Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer." The Roman poet, Ovid wrote, "Take rest; a field that has rested gives a bountiful crop.The idea of opening on Sundays didn't start until the 1970's (here I go again dating myself.) This practice of opening on a day when we should be resting, not shopping.... changed the whole retail structure as we know it. It also deprived subsequent generations of a very healthy practice.