Recently a car mechanic told me this story: He was depressed at work but stuck with his job because of family responsibilities. Then he encountered a Sufi teacher who said to him, "Each time you turn the ratchet as you repair a vehicle, speak the word Allah." The mechanic did so, and his whole life changed, the whole relation with his work changed. "Now," he said, "I love my work. I love cars. They are alive. It is a mistake to think of animate versus inanimate. A car will tell you, if you listen deeply enough, whether it wants to be repaired or whether it wants simply to be left alone to die."

Matthew Fox, Sins of the Spirit, Blessings of the Flesh