In this post I want to share with You that:
- I do not like the word ‘Servant;’ It is too Demeaning, and should be Abolished, if not Dis-used.
- But there are some who Rejoice and Glory in the word ‘Servant,’ and in Being Servants! It seems to be something like the Stockholm Syndrome!
Let us get down to it!
Family photo NE India 1880’s, Source: ebay, Nov. 2006
1. The picture seems to bring out what a Servant was/is supposed to be: One who sits at the feet, and does the things somebody called a ‘master/mistress’ does not want to do. Namely, Menial Jobs.
Let us Note a few things in this photograph.
(Particularly) In the Indian Culture, a Woman is supposed to keep her head Covered as a mark of Respect. A man ‘bares’ it for the same effect, to ‘show’ respect. If he is ‘wearing’ his headgear, he is deemed to ‘stand tall.’ Children would not be bothered about such things. Also, More clothes signify Affluence and Demand Respect.
The picture clearly shows how, in the case of Servants, all these norms were Flouted. There is No worry about Child Labour. The men are ‘made’ to wear all those ‘extra,’ unnecessary clothing, and the headgears, while made to stand, and made to understand that for all the paraphernalia, they are there to do the bidding: the ‘master’ saith come, and he cometh, and vice versa. …Even the boy has been made to don the turban.
…The Lord Jesus Himself, Surprisingly and seemingly Shockingly, refers to the way Servants were supposed to behave. See Luke 17:7-10. It is totally Bereft of Dignity.
The word Service, coming from the Same Roots, means something very different from that of Servanthood. Mother Teresa Served. Nobody thinks any the less of her for that.
There are indeed instances where those who are called Servants are High Dignitaries. Abraham’s Servant, the one who was charged with finding a wife for Isaac, ‘Was Incharge of All he (Abraham) had.’ Genesis 24:2. Jesus is the Suffering Servant. The one in the parable of the Unforgiving Servant owed his master ‘Ten Thousand Talents,’ Matthew 18:24, KJV. One Talent was a Measure of Weight, of More than 34 Kilograms! (That was how the Kings of Old measured their Income!). Thus, at least the Servants mentioned in this paragraphs were not Menials!
But In General, the Term Servant is a Put-Down word. There were ‘Service Entrances,’ and ‘Service Elevators.’ In many parts of the World, a ‘Servant’ cannot travel on the same ‘lift’ as …Others!
At least for the present, at this point of time, Doing Odd Jobs for Others is a Powerful Means of Earning one’s Livelihood for Very Many indeed. It is Poverty and Circumstances that forces them to take up these kinds of works.
We Should Not Shame them Further by calling them Servants. The Right word would be: Employees.
2. There is a category of people who are known as ‘government servants.’
[First of all, let me reiterate my Repugnance, Abhorrence and even Hatred for all words connected with ‘governance.’ I am Nobody’s Servant, except, as my name signifies, one of Christ Jesus, and by Choice at that. And I Absolutely Refuse to be ‘governed’ by any human being. Down with the word government. Let us use the term: Administration.]
‘A Clerk is a Jerk,’ has famously and rightly said Wayne Dyer, in his ‘Pulling Your Own Strings.’ These clerks and their cousins are whom We are referring to as ‘government servants’ here.
While, by definition, there are bound to be Exceptions, for the most part, in India at least, people seek a ‘government’ job with their tongues hanging out; and most people obligingly, and like servants themselves, look ‘up’ to government servants.
Not just Clerks, but even officers, for instance, in the Electrical department, become servants to the SERVANT MENTALITY. Meaning thereby, for them, the master, in this case the Administration, can do no wrong!
These Employees get fat salaries, increments, housing, travel and medical facilities, etc. And, Even when they go to vote, where they can Choose the Right People in Complete Privacy, they faithfully cast their votes for their ‘masters.’ And the Administration in turn, knowing this very well, rewards the Employees with Increments at Just the Right time, (before elections, etc). You scratch my back, I scratch yours.
Just saw in Facebook that another group of ‘government servants,’ in the ‘Law department,’ called judges, etc, work a mere 188 days a year! That makes it just about 50%.
…’government servants’ as a body are a fairly educated group.
They can be Great Instruments of Change, If only they would WISH to be That! It is a Tragedy that they CHOOSE to Remain Servants in Every sense of the word.
I would even dare to say that the World would Change for the Better if they Start Using their Brains, which, along with their Souls, they seem to have ‘sold’ to the Administration. They are, as I said, an Educated, Organized, Huge Group, after all!
But what they actually do is calculate under which political party they would be the better able to collect More Bribes! They even Talk about it! You can hear this in Buses, at Tea Shops, and such, before election time! And being this Supposedly Educated, Organized, Huge Group, History shows us whom they have helped choose.
Here’s to Wishing that they would Wake Up one day.
There is another group of ‘government servants,’ who serve in the ‘Armed’ services, namely, the military and the police. Except in the case of the Famous Exceptions, they help the so called Administration, and prove to be Instruments of Destruction of the Individual and of Society. On this group, more later.