Appreciating One’s

Freedom
When I think of the word freedom, I denote it self-
consciously it with words such as slavery, confinement and bondage. These
words don’t have as much meaning to me as they would have if I could
describe my life with them. They do have many negative connotations, which
I clearly understand, but as for self-relation of these words, there is
none. But stepping back and examining the bigger picture, which they relate
to, being freedom, I realize that the words I relate to freedom are only
pebbles in the pond to understanding its complete meaning. The words
slavery, and confinement are thought of in terms of their physical
connotations. They bring up events such as the holocaust, black slavery,
and prisoners of war. It is true that these words do relate to freedom in
these terms, but there are other, more unrecognizable forms of enslavement
that exist. These other forms are mental enslavement and psychological
enslavement, which because of our obliviousness and ignorance, exist all
around us in our society. Freedom to me, is being rid of those metaphorical
chains around us. Unfortunately, freedom of the body, mind, and psyche
aren’t all excepted as “true” freedom everywhere around the world, and we
can relate this to many events in the history of the world.

To some, freedom has been a boundless life in which
there existed no consequences for actions. However, this is not true
freedom! True Freedom even has its borders and boundaries. There is a very
fine line between freedom and privilege, and privilege and choice. True
freedom exists at the middle of a spectrum where it has reached its
equilibrium. Unfortunately, many people who believe they have been free
before, have only been free on the left or right side of the spectrum. True
freedom means being able to feel and think the way you wish to, and being
able to do things to compliment these feelings and emotions. However,
physical freedom to do whatever you want to whomever you want is not true
freedom, it is absolute power. Unfortunately, because of these boundaries
on freedom, it may never reach its equilibrium, since there are people who
want to have bad things happen to other people. In many ways, this ties in
with peace. However, true freedom and peace do not exist within the same
conditions, therefore making it even more difficult to picture such a world
where both are present. But, at least we have the freedom to imagine such a
place, which is in itself a doorway to eternal bliss.

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Events in our past have set examples of how powerful
people have misinterpreted freedom and abused their privileges. Such
examples of confiscation of freedom and slavery are the Jews 5000 years
ago, read of in the bible, the the North American slave trade just 150
years ago, and the holocaust in World War II. When you look at who remains
responsible for these instances of slavery and confiscation of freedom,
most of the time we can point to one individual. These individuals come
into two lights. Some of these individuals simply misinterpret freedom and
thus abuse their power and privilege and in creating their “ideal” freedom,
steal away other’s. Then again, we have some who knowingly manipulate the
true meaning of the word freedom to suit themselves and use their power to
take away other’s. Just as it was during all these oppressive ages in
history, today, we the people of society choose ignorance over knowing and
fighting for the cause. It is because of so many people choosing the life
oblivious to other’s suffering, that it goes on without yield. Mahatma
Gandhi once said “Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote
freedom to err. It passes my comprehension how human beings, be they ever
so experienced and able, can delight in depriving other human beings of
that precious right.” Mahatma Gandhi fought for his freedom and the freedom
of his people because he chose to take recognition of it and thus not allow
it to go on.

Freedom, is a simple word. But, this simple word
owns it’s own world of complexities. It holds very many connotations,
denotations, and forms. Before we try and understand the true nature of the
word. We must first grasp the idea that true freedom lies at the middle of
a spectrum. Furthermore, freedom does not come without it’s own boundaries.

We must strive for this equilibrium. Without true freedom, there is no
point in living. Freedom of speech, thought, feeling, and doing are what
make true happiness. And if ones freedom for these things does not create
happiness for others, then it is not true freedom, just an obscure
interpretation. Thus, it is ignorance which halts our progression in the
fight for true freedom. For those who choose a blissful life of ignorance
are only stealing away their own freedom from thinking and learning. Until
we reach true freedom, we are still living on one of the sides of the
spectrum, and while on one of the sides, oppression will always exist.

Oppression of thought, existence and feeling.


“None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are
free.”
–Johann Wolfgang von Goethe