THE TREASURES OF FREEDOM

in #freedom3 years ago

person-110305__340.jpg

In 1946, one year after being liberated from the Auschwitz concentration camp at the end of WWII, Victor Frankl, a former prisoner in the death camp, wrote the powerful and life changing book, Mans Search for Meaning. It's been many years since I've read that treasure of wisdom but I still recall it's essence and depth.

You may have witnessed through my last two posts some mental struggles I've been going through. As I was grappling with my own ghosts and goblins I recalled what Victor Frankl said in his book: we have the power to choose. When all other freedoms have been taken away, this last one remains, the power to choose ones thoughts and attitudes. I followed his advice and adjusted my attitudes.

Of course Frankl knew, as do you and I, that there are times of illness or accident or addiction when we loose even that, the ultimate freedom, the ability to control our own minds. But for the most part we do have that freedom, and if not strong in that ability we can learn to be so.

I think it is appropriate to quote Frankl: What was really needed was a fundamental change in our attitude toward life. We had to learn ourselves and, furthermore, we had to teach the despairing men, that it did not really matter what we expected from life, but rather what life expected from us. We needed to stop asking about the meaning of life, and instead think of ourselves as those who were being questioned by life - daily and hourly... life ultimately means taking the responsibility to find the right answer to its problems and to fulfill the tasks which it constantly sets for each individual.

And in this quote from Frankl we find the key to freedom: responsibility. In Auschwitz where men and women were beaten, tortured, worked to death and treated like vermin they had only one freedom. To choose their own thoughts. Frankl admits, and we certainly know it to be true, that in this extreme environment it was not easy, but if for only a moment each day, or each week, they could recall moments of love. They could choose to be grateful for one more bit of food, or a helping hand of a fellow. They chose to envision a day of liberation. Those who exercised this freedom had a much better chance of survival. Those who could not sustain these powerful thoughts frequently perished.

But let's go back to the key to freedom - responsibility. The level of freedom you experience is directly proportional to the amount of responsibility you are willing to exercise. Or on a larger scale we can say the level of freedom we have is directly proportional to the level of responsibility we are willing to exercise. Of course, we all know that many humans live under governments that are very controlling and that freedom is limited in those conditions but the principle still applies: To be free you must be responsible, and the more responsible you are the more free you will be. But this is where it gets a bit tricky. Most humans really don't know how to be free, or are willing to compromise their freedom for something governments will provide in exchange. For example many people now believe it is governments responsibility to provide retirement income, or higher education, or medications, social justice, economic justice, fairness, jobs, or even happiness. These people abdicate their own personal sovereignty in exchange for being taken care of. I mean, it's a human failing...if someone else, or government is willing to provide, or be responsible or take care then most humans say, "Let them." Even if government has to steal from someone else in order to give it to another, or even if it drives their government into total economic collapse because of debt, well, so be it.

And now that the State is becoming more and more controlling with more and more restrictions even to the point of surveilling your every call, email, job, grades in school, purchasing habits, bank balances, music you listen to and people you connect with most are still willing to compromise in exchange for safety, or benefits. Most are willing to do as they are told just because an illusive authority says so. But it is so easy that way, isn't it? Oh yes, the chains wrapped around our necks may feel like silk but they are still chains.

freedom-2048427__340.jpg

WHY NOT BE HAPPY WITH MODIFIED FREEDOM?

Can you imagine a world without government or with very, very limited government? There would be no social security, no government invasion of your privacy, no welfare benefits, no government-provided education or health care, no onerous taxes, no TSA checks, no environmental regulations, no requirements for business licenses', no local dog/animal shelter, no standards for prescription drugs or food quality, no unemployment or National parks, or OSHA, etc., etc. For most this would be considered to be a very ugly world indeed.

So why not have modified freedom where the citizens of a State choose what level of freedom they prefer, what level of government involvement they like? Wow! That's an excellent question. I'm glad I asked it.

First of all, at our current level of consciousness modified freedom, or pervasive government involvement in virtually every aspect of our lives is what we want...for the most part. Some want more, some less, but for most government is seen as a troublesome but necessary institution. I'll tell you this, however, the level of government we have and what it does is a reflection of our collective consciousness. So is freedom not what it is cracked up to be? (Does anyone know where that phrase came from? ...cracked up to be.)

Here is the answer, an answer that only those who are on a path leading to higher awareness, and higher consciousness can comprehend. For those who prefer to delegate their personal responsibility to government this answer will be reviled and rejected. But it is what it is, and you can measure yourself against it.

Only through freedom can we rise to our highest potential. Only through freedom can we realize our greatest spiritual truth, that being: we are love, light, compassion, truth, peace, abundance, intelligence, gratitude, creators, free. And only in freedom can we practice these things, in the highest degree.

Now, some will vehemently argue that there are many who have achieved these high spiritual treasures, some in very restrictive circumstances. True. Very true. I would suggest, however, that the more responsible one is the greater his/her opportunity is to rise in consciousness. When one forfeits responsibility to another or to government, one decreases his/her personal power. It's as simple as that.

I would be free. I would govern myself.

WHAT ABOUT ANARCHY?

This may surprise you but I am not an anarchist. Why? In my opinion humanity is simply not ready for anarchy, or capable of self government. The overwhelming majority of people, at this point in human evolution/consciousness, are incapable of living free. Were all governments dissolved tomorrow the world would be cast into a cauldron of chaos and destruction. The very first thing people would do, after a period of terrible violence, would be to organize, to form local governments. It would be a matter of survival.

SO WHAT DO WE DO?

So, for those of us who love freedom what do we do? We continue to be as self-responsible as possible. We continue to grow in consciousness and love and awareness. We champion freedom and individual responsibility. We keep the torch of freedom burning brightly in our own families and in our own hearts.

May you be blessed and be at peace.

Mister Mercury

Sort:  

I agree with you, and this is how I would put it. The degree of freedom we can enjoy is almost 100% dependent on the degree of responsibility we are willing to take for our lives. The circumstances we find ourselves in at any moment of any day, are neutral... neither good nor bad. It is our interpretation of the events and circumstances in our life that determines whether it is good or bad.

If Victor Frankl can find freedom in one of the most desperate situations a man could find himself in, then any one of us can be free, no matter the circumstances of our lives. And the better the thoughts, the freer the life.

My thoughts are my own, and there lies true freedom. When I realize my thoughts are not positive, I can choose another thought. It is that simple.

I also agree with you

humanity is simply not ready for anarchy, or capable of self government.

... but I believe that there are more and more of us who are, and our numbers are growing.

And in answer to your parenthetical...

Origin of It’s Not All It’s Cracked Up to Be
This idiom was likely derived from a lesser-known definition of crack, which can mean to tell, talk, or to praise, depending on the context. This meaning stems from Middle English and is seen in other expressions such as cracking a joke. (https://writingexplained.org/idiom-dictionary/not-all-its-cracked-up-to-be)

... if you can believe what you read on the internet...

I appreciate your well thought out comment. Indeed, we are called to be masters of our own minds and thoughts. Even when all else may fail we can, if for only moments, be filled with light. It seems to me, too, that there is a growing number of folks who are evolving. There is hope! Blessings.

Great post, Christopher. You had me in total agreement until you got to saying you don't believe in Anarchy. Of course, I do understand your point of people not being ready, but what determines that point? Sure, it would be like being born into a whole new physical world from a mother's womb of total dependence and with that would come some shocks to the system. I guess it would depend on how and what led up to that dramatic change too.

Also, the media has washed into our psyche a very different understanding and definition to the word Anarchy. They've programmed us to think of it as a dog-eat-dog world where people kill and rob each other. The second definition often overlooked is simply:

2.absence of government and absolute freedom of the individual, regarded as a political ideal.

That's the one I believe in and hope one day to see... Have a great weekend. Many Blessings

I sustain a hope for the day when humans are capable of self-responsibility and individual self government. I believe that is our destiny. However, it begins with each individual. And right now, most individuals are ... um, responsibility challenged.

Good to hear from you. Appreciate your comments. Blessings.

Me too... Totally... I believe the key to shaking the masses from their responsibility challenged dependence into responsible independence is taking away their vices of television/media programming that has played such a key role in putting them where so many are mentally at now. That and/or more realistically sculpting these media addiction vices to feed independent responsibility first to ween them off their baby bottles. I would say that you do an excellent job of that already with so much of the material you write about, Christopher.

All things media was my area of expertise and believe me when I say that I know just how much has gone into using that primary tool of mind control on the masses the last century ever since Pres. Woodrow Wilson hired Freud's nephew, Edward Bernays, to mind control the American population into going to WWI. Social media is also now one of the primary tools they use, which as the first CEO of Fb has said publicly, was specifically designed to get the masses physically addicted to dopamine fixes.

The creators of the blockchain-based crypto rewarded social media sites have taken it to the next level. Thus, I have to take responsibility too for my own addiction by first being aware of it and limiting my time spent on them by taking more time off this weekend. Many Blessings, my friend. Have an awesome weekend.

I had a strange insight the other night while watching some drivel on TV (admittedly I was somewhat under the influence of fine weed). I saw how one can become so involved in TV and the drama there that what one views becomes ones reality. And it was just a story! Then I was fascinated to see that since we are consciousness that we create our own life stories. What I believe and create may not even be real or truthful. Well... I ramble.

Ultimately, I think it may take some divine intervention through some sort of natural disaster, or a man made one, to realign human behavior to self-responsibility.

Exactly. I've got an 82 yr. old mother-in-law who gets completely hypnotized watching TV. Sometimes we have difficulty snapping her out of it. I have been absolutely amazed at the level of studies that has been used in all things media for social engineering experiments. Everything about television has evolved to be often the most extremist use of hypnosis and mind control.

Yes, It was spooky for me the other day when I contemplated how immersed in fantasy land we are with social media, TV, cell phones, etc. We are turning into some kind of data zombies quite like the Matrix. And can do it here too! Blessings.

I totally agree. It really is Matrix like what we've been pulled into living. Speaking of "fantasy land", the next time you do some of that fine weed, try watching the Jim Carrie film, "The Truman Show". I don't have that option living in a no fly zone... LOL. Still, I watched that film again several days ago and it really got me thinking about such things as probably the faked moon landing and even the Flat Earth stuff. Both of those I have explored more with an open mind recently and I'm more convinced than ever on the fake moon landing evidence and as difficult (cognitive dissonance) it is to buy off on the Flat Earth theory, there are definitely certain concrete experimental data that without doubt show the earth is far more flat than we've been so programmed to "think". I haven't gone that deep into it all yet and still would have to answer a ton of questions that what little I have seen doesn't address enough at all, but given all the other programming I've learned to be scientifically inaccurate, anything is possible these days.

I think it's readily apparent that most of us, if not all of us aren't really ready for freedom in its truest sense. I think you just need to look at what goes on Steemit to see that, and supposedly, the people being attracted to STEEM first are the ones who want a decentralized way of life with freedom.

I've always wondered what less government or limited government really means. When they say they want it, to what degree are we talking about. If we were able to allocate dollars to the different budgets of the federal government, what would we want to fund?

I believe you are right. We couldn't just end up with anarchy because most of us wouldn't be ready for it. And out of the chaos strong men would arise, and whatever semblance of freedom we might still have now would end up evaporating in an instant.

At times I wonder if I'm enlightened at all. Right is wrong. Up is down. In is out. And if someone wills it, what was championed by one group one day will be vilified by the champions the next. We have all these opinions and everyone seems to care but nothing ever changes. It just keeps moving.

Sorry for being so tardy in my response. Have been busy, and in one of those transitional funks common to seekers. I do have a strong vision of what we humans can evolve into and that gives me hope.

I'll play the role I've been given the best I can, and at the end as I exit stage right I'll smile at the audience and wish them well, knowing we are all on a path which to us seems unbearably long and challenging, but ultimately leads to the truth of who we are. I see light, sometimes rather dim, but always, it seems, increasing. Blessings.

We can complain all we want about every system, but in the end we really need a system :)

Anarchy is for sure not the option. I saw anarchy and lawlessness after the hurricane last year, that is trule NOT what we should want.

Modified freedom with a sort of self responsiblity also sounds like a good option but there are just so many people non capable of actually forfilling this. More than we would ever think. So many people are dependent of systems because lack of poor health, lack or education, lack of mental stability.

Dont forget, wihout any systems these people will also end up in nomansland

Yes indeed. We humans are evolutionary creatures it seems. Right now we're kind of stuck in a time of confusion and loss of integrity, a time of dependence upon corrupt governments with hidden agenda's. But this is part of our path, one we must grow out of. Perhaps one day (far beyond the limits of my life) we will be sufficiently evolved where governments are very limited.

Hello @mistermercury!

This may surprise you but I am not an anarchist. Why? In my opinion humanity is simply not ready for anarchy, or capable of self government.

I am an anarchist, to the degree that I can achieve this status, which is in fact a minute degree, for not being penalized too harshly for being one at heart. The authoritarian web is spun so tightly that I simply do not have the means to break completely free.

And I cannot but agree with you that true freedom by real anarchy is wishful thinking.

There is only a tiny little light shining at the end of a very dark tunnel in the form of 'crypto-power' that maintains a glimmer of hope.

Maybe our best future lies in limited government, tempered by decentralized forces enabled with the aid of this brilliant new technology, that returns the power of choice back into the hands of the individual.

It might take generations to perfectly harness it's potential and to get a large enough portion of the population to properly exercise their true democratic power through it...but there is hope!

Indeed! At times when my vision of humanity is focused by the media and current events, I despair. However, I try and remind myself that we humans, truly have evolved in many areas and it seems to me are gradually becoming more loving, compassionate and perhaps even more self-responsible. There is hope and crypto's and platforms like Steemit provide a great mirror in which we may gaze and see a brighter future. Certainly not an easy future, but a hopeful one. Blessings.

To listen to the audio version of this article click on the play image.

Brought to you by @tts. If you find it useful please consider upvoting this reply.