We hear about freedom everywhere. Do we know, what is freedom for a person?
People think freedom is ability to do whatever we want, wherever we are. If we can be like that, are we free?
A person who think freedom is- having a car, buys a car and drives everywhere. A person who thinks freedom is being free from driving in the busy streets, rides in a bus. Owner of the car has to pay insurance, drive car in busy streets with stress- but he can drive it whenever he want and wherever he wants. Rider in the bus doesn’t have to pay lot of money for car, travel according to the bus schedule- but avoid all the stressful driving. Who is free here? Freedom with car is burden with driving. Freedom with bus riding is burden with traveling. Most of the times, freedom is defined by people’s convenience.
Most of the time, we are not free at all. Some kind of chain is around us always. Some of them in real world are rules and regulations, material possessions, commercial advertisements, barriers of country, religion, race, color…etc. If we look in the world of mind-they are prejudices, desires, possessions, perceptions, etc.
Freedom is a choice in us. We decide whether we want to be free or not. We define our own freedom. One’s choice of freedom is someone’s chain. We make us free or not, by our wisdom, intuition and experience. Complete freedom is hard to achieve. If someone can achieve that, they are not ordinary people.
Freedom from a particular thing is always possible for everyone. We can be free from something always. So we can say ‘I am free from __ or I have freedom from __’. But we cannot say ‘I am free or I have freedom’. Because we are not free!
Then who is totally free?
The people who don’t have anything; but feels like they have everything;
People who can control their feelings; but not controlled by any feelings.
Now I can see why monks choose to have nothing!