The Feeling of Freedom
There are certain things in this life which make me feel free. I guess one could say that living is what makes me feel free; after all, isn't freedom really a feeling or a state of mind? But sometimes I think simply saying that I am "living" or "alive" is oversimplified, and I want to list things even though such a list can be as equally undescriptive.
I suppose I am just too informed about what is going on around me and in me, and I get it – I see the control. So it is a constant struggle for me, feeling free. I can't let it go, I see too much. I am grown and evolved; I am aware and alive; I am alert and aroused; and I am active and feeling.
So at risk of being undescriptive and misleading in exactly what I mean, I present a sort of list. This list should be understood in conjunction with it's equally oversimplified summary of "I am alive." None of it is the sum total of what I am trying to communicate, but it all gets the reader a little closer to what it is that I believe constitutes "feeling free."
I feel free when I can be myself unrestricted and unpressured by outside influences, including those outside influences which have been programmed into me as who I should be or how I should act. I feel free when I rebel against those influences, not for the sake of rebellion, but because I am consciously aware that my rebellion is truly who I wish to be or what I wish to do. I feel free when I have no guilt brought about by sinning against myself; that is, my true self, not who I have been programmed to be or how I have been programmed to act. In other words, I feel free when I am acting as a spirit with freewill and not some biochemical robot who has been programmed with a bunch of IF, THEN, and GOTO commands.
I feel free when I take the time to question everything: every feeling, every worry, every desire, and every hinderance. I feel free when I know myself: physically, psychologically, and spiritually. I feel free when I know my environment: where I belong, my orientation and direction, my resources, and my physical world. I feel free when I know my society: what society is, how society works, what the purpose of society is, and what parts of me are actually society. I feel free when I know I am not a tool for society, but society is the tool is was meant to be for me and everyone else who chose to be a member (if choosing membership in our modern society is even possible).
I feel free when I am outdoors – that is my physical environment! I feel free when I am in the analytical mind and in my spirit. I feel free when I can find and make my own food and medicine, and provide my own necessities of life. I feel free when I am listening to music or making my own. I feel free when I can smoke whatever or drink whatever or ingest whatever, as I wish too, when I wish too, and without fear of reprisal. I feel free when I can fully express my sexuality. I feel free when I can fully express my emotions. I feel free when I can take full control over my own consciousness and expand it in whatever manner or way I choose!
I feel free when I am naked, not just physically, but on every level and in every way. I feel free when I feel innocent (without guilt). I feel free when those around me feel as I do and they see and accept who I am, what makes me myself, and what it is that makes me feel free. I feel free when I am only concerned with what really and truly matters in my life and all the unnecessary B.S. is removed from my concern so as to eliminate unnecessary stress and anxiety.
I feel free knowing how society controls each and everyone of us. I feel free knowing that we are controlled through the creation of unnecessary stress and anxiety in order to steal energy and generate a passive, apathetic, or docile state. I feel free knowing that we are controlled through the creation of false guilt, false self-awareness, and a false sense of esteem. I feel free knowing that life is not what we are programmed and lead to believe, but it is so much simpler and so much more exciting. I feel free knowing that it is not about society, but society is about "us"!
I believe it was Janis Joplin who said, "freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose." I've often thought about that lyric, and I never quite believed it extended much past talk of love, relationships, and matters of the heart, but I can see where it applies to what I am trying to say, if for nothing, then as the beginnings of understanding what it is that feeling free truly is.
Freedom cannot be bottled-up and taken away. Freedom cannot be imprisoned. Feeling free can be bottled-up, taken away, and imprisoned, but freedom is our natural state and natural right. You can't take freedom, but you can take the feeling, and if you take the feeling, then there is no perception of it except what your captor provides you. Freedom is perceived and known through feeling. Perhaps that is why the philosopher Christian de Quincey intrigues me so much? He, like other philosophers, insists that "feeling" is just as relevant a form of knowing as any other perception; indeed, it may be the most important.
Freedom is one of those states of existence that means nothing without feeling it. We are not free because of a right or a piece of paper (our Constitution), or because of a flag, or even because someone died in some war over natural resources or money or ideologies. We are free when we feel free, and we feel free when we think and do as ourselves.
So, in closing, I would say if you want to be free and you want to feel free, find yourself, know yourself, and then be yourself. Damn everything that makes you not be yourself! Freedom is not money, or a job, or a privilege, or something on a piece of paper, or anything which can be controlled or taken. Freedom is a state of mind. Feeling free is merely living and perceiving that very state of mind!
Peace & Happiness,