O idle man who is unaware of the pleasure of effort and happiness of work! Know that out of His perfect munificence, Almighty God placed the reward for work within it. He included the wage for work within the work itself. It is for this reason that in their particular duties, which are called creative commands, animate beings, and even from one point of view inanimate creatures, conform to the dominical commands with complete eagerness and a sort of pleasure. Everything from bees, flies, and chickens to the sun and the moon carry out their duties with perfect pleasure. This means there is an enjoyment in their work so that they perform it perfectly, although they do not think of the results since they do not possess intelligence.
I f y o u a s k : “Living creatures have the ability to receive pleasure, but how can inanimate beings experience eagerness and enjoyment?”
T h e A n s w e r : Inanimate beings desire and seek a position, a rank, perfection, beauty, and order, not on their own accounts but on account of the divine names manifested on them. They become illumined and progress because in performing their natural duties, they become like mirrors and places of reflection of the names of the Light of Lights.
For example, if, although they are unimportant and of themselves without light, a droplet of water or fragment of glass are turned with their pure hearts to the sun, they become thrones to the sun and smile at you. Similarly, by being mirrors in respect of their duties towards the names of the All-Glorious One, who possesses absolute beauty and perfection, particles and beings rise from a very lowly position to a most elevated degree of manifestation and illumination like the droplet and fragment of glass. Since they rise to a luminous and exalted rank by virtue of their duties, it may be said that if it is possible and they have the capacity to receive pleasure, that is, if they receive a share of general life, they perform their duties with perfect pleasure.
For clear evidence of the pleasure to be found in the performance of duties consider your own members and emotions. Each receives different pleasures in performing the duties connected to your personal survival and the survival of the human race. The duties themselves are a means of enjoyment for them, and to give up a duty is a sort of torment for a member.
Further clear evidence is the self-sacrifice and courage which such animals as cocks and hens with chicks display in performing their duties: even