Devil’s Workshops: Manufacturing Idleness

idle-webThe capabilities of the human mind have not yet been calculated to a limit, every moment there is a person who is been blessed with a sense, which is superior to the rest of us. Some of the gifted have their senses built through time; they do not practice any sort of special exercises to build the senses, but simply go on to their daily work. Our species is found to be the most superior, because of the rationalising and logical analysing of the human mind; we learn, develop, discover and keep on building on to the foundation that is created, and the persistence and vision allow us to contend as leaders and decision makers of the world. The flipside of this however is if we under-utilise our mind, or stagnate it while we keep idle to unnecessary and unimportant matters.

Wilted Flower

Like a flower wilts, if not watered and nurtured, so will your mind if you keep it on the stale diet of nonsensical and comical topics. “An idle mind is a devil’s workshop”, these are the remarks that most of us might have heard from: an annoyed mother (due to the ruckus you create), a disappointed teacher (who feels as though you are draining your potential in worthless stupidities), and other such guides who wish for the best of our future. Now to clearly understand the meaning of this phrase, we have to understand what the devil’s workshop actually manufactures, and how did our mothers and teachers etc. know that we are headed in the same direction? On further probing on this matter, with many people refusing to provide an answer and a few unkind words from people, I can safely say, that the devil’s workshop is basically a place which drains all your potential and wastes your energy on mindless matters, which seem as they are pressing causes at the time such as: winning the last level in a video game; annoying the neighbour’s dog and other such social duties.


As mentioned in the above paragraph, there are several issues that can consume us entirely, which in retrospect would be considered as a waste. With the continuity of work being piled on; there are times when there is a need to unwind, however with our habits it is easy to get carried away in momentum of the unwinding activities. The mental inertia, is what the devil’s workshop is, the effects of it are steeply inclined on the negative side; the stagnated mind often leads to the settling of a feeling commonly known as laziness. When we define laziness, it seems harmless and more like a temporary situation; some may go on to call it a synonym to the ‘creative block’; which by the way is false. There are many psychological as well as physical changes that laziness causes, the most popular of them are obesity and clinical depression.


Today, especially among the youth of the great sub-continent, that is India; the fad of maintaining a sleek and fit physique has spread all around, with all the youngsters joining the gymnasiums in their locality and bulking up their bodies, consuming protein powders and whatnot. When I engaged in general conversations with people of that age group, who were preparing to graduate from their higher secondary studies; I learned that the majority of them have a negative opinion on further educating themselves; most of them dream to become one of the dropout icons; the ones who have made a fortune and fame for themselves despite of their lack of academic experience. Now not matter how impressive their works are, and they also inspire people in the millions, they still reached to that stage with a particular idea in mind. So instead of taking the desired content out of their entire struggle to success, the unexperienced but impressed work towards a goal with a misunderstood and unprepared mind.


It is a great gift and can be used to our advantage, or it can be a liability and the cause of destruction, i.e. our psyche. There is another impact that a stagnant thought, has on you; it’s animated and active process is the reason for the balance that it maintains, we have to be like the rope walker in a circus, make sure that the balancing stick doesn’t incline more on any one side; same is how we need to treat our mind, a little bit of relaxation and just the optimum pressure to ensure a cake walk along the narrow and tricky path. The reason of carrying on any activity is so that you avoid allowing your thoughts, to wander into prohibited grounds of negative and wavy subjects and questions; all those in the end, will make you feel insecure and unsure of your work, image, thoughts and character. Referring to the movie ‘Cast Away’ in which Tom Hanks played the role of a man stranded on an island after his plane crashed; he was a fed-ex engineer making a delivery, when all of a sudden he was marooned on an island for many years, and goes through psychological trauma due to his idle situation. Like a quote from Buddha explains, “To be idle is a short road to death, and to be diligent is the way to life”.


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