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Not for Bread Alone: Notes on Good Work

August 14th, 2020 | 8 min read

By Benjamin Woollard

On a number of the shelves in my home sit baskets that I have made myself. I took up the craft out of a need for contrast in what is a largely abstract existence, mostly consisting of reading and computer work. Being a person who enjoys working with his hands, I was not all that surprised when I found this to be deeply gratifying. The constant application of my mind and body to a challenging, but not terribly complicated, activity resulted in long periods of intense inner quiet that gave rise to a peace not unlike prayer. This kind of experience is something that seems to have a great pull for many people, as is attested by the seemingly endless stream of internet videos in which people build huts, craft wooden furniture with non-electronic tools, or weave comforters using archaic methods, some of which attract millions of views.

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