Freedom may be one of the most misunderstood words in the English language. Most people want the freedom to do whatever they want, but few understand how limited their freedom really is. Even when we have military personnel “fighting for our freedoms,” we fail to grasp that freedom is a relative rather than absolute concept on three-dimensional Earth.
Restricting freedoms by locking people in jails, internment camps, torture facilities and the like is a major punishment for societal crimes. And being set free from those penal facilities can induce a great uplifting feeling. But this euphoric state is short-term at best since other restrictions replace those we just escaped.
Laws in countries, states and cities place limits on our freedoms, especially those behaviors which can do harm to other people or their property. We must be able to interact constructively with others in our environment to live with them, and that requires us to forego some of our self-interests so others can have their way occasionally. Chaos would result if everyone was totally selfish and uncaring toward fellow travelers in this world.
Even if we live alone in a wilderness area and have no laws or other people telling us what to do, we still must die someday. We have no choice in the matter; we do NOT have the freedom to live forever on Earth. And while we live, there may be times we have no food, water or other basic necessities for life. Illnesses and injuries also come into play.
When we examine life on Earth rationally and honestly, we conclude that our freedoms are limited at best. We may have our own belief systems, but we may need to keep those beliefs private from those whose views differ from us. After all, not all people are tolerant of individual differences. We may choose to restrict ourselves for our own self-preservation.
And many behaviors we consider consistent with our notion of freedom backfire on us. In Charles Dickens’s “A Christmas Carol,” Ebenezer Scrooge’s former business partner visits him from beyond the grave while dragging a long, heavy ball and chain. Ironically, the links of the chain were added one at a time with every selfish act. He limited his own freedom, both on Earth and in the afterlife, due in large part to his effort to gain more freedom.
Freedom means different things to different people, but most define it in terms that perpetuate limitations on their freedoms. In my mind, there is only one way truly to be free. That is mental freedom. Our minds are capable of opening up to a vast, unlimited database of knowledge. We are then free of the limits of space and time. A light goes off in our heads when we make connections, and we suddenly have access to uplifting feelings and a veritable treasure-house of information.
How do we accomplish this? We do it by letting go of fear and freeing our minds to think and explore whatever they will. Placing no restrictions on our minds allows us to find mental freedom regardless of our location or circumstance. Thus, we can feel free even if we are locked in solitary confinement.
Enemies may mutilate our bodies or otherwise persecute us, but even this can’t stop us from feeling free. This is especially true if we embrace the fact our true self is energy that lives forever. The fear of death limits most of us, but knowing we live forever neutralizes fear. With no fear, we are free to become one with the entire universe.
Freedom is a wonderful state of mind and is something we should all seek. But to do so, one must embrace unlimited concepts unavailable within the confines of three-dimensional Earth. When we do, we discover a limitless world filled with love.