"Freedom is not given
to us by anyone;
we have to cultivate it ourselves.
It is a daily practice."
-- Thich Nhat Hanh
Freedom is simply a choice. It is a choice to accept one's own power to choose. Our ultimate power is to choose our own thoughts. That means that our ultimate freedom is within. It is not something we need fight for, escape from, or mold to a certain way of living. It is simply, exquisitely, brightly, and magnificently our individual power of choice, and it is not a thing, but an idea, and it doesn't come from the physical, it comes from the non-physical.
Freedom is not something to get or to gain. It is something we allow and accept. Because it always was, is and will be a choice of our own choosing, no one can take it away from us. No one can think for us. Our ultimate power is the ability to choose our own thoughts in any circumstance. That freedom is always within us, yet may not be recognized and accepted. Just as we can choose right or left, up or down, in or out, we can choose freedom or bondage. Both of those ideas originate and are cultivated in the mind.
Some good questions to ask ourselves from time to time might be, what is freedom to me? How do I experience freedom? What is bondage, or lack of freedom to me? How and in what ways do I, or have I experienced bondage or lack of freedom? How do I feel free? How can I cultivate more freedom in my life? Am I blaming others for any of my lack of freedom? If so, why would my lack of freedom be their fault?
In the United States, today is the celebration of a choice of action in claiming political independence from Britain. It was a thought that became a shared thought that became an action, and then a group action. That could have played in any number of ways, and the ways that were chosen involved massive violence and pain. Our choices then were habitual and learned from the past. They remain that today.
We have had, do, and always will have the power of choice, our ultimate freedom, to choose otherwise--if and when we realize that freedom is a choice of thought, not a choice of action. It is allowing. It is love. All those actions that have been, are still, and could possibly be in the future, are not freedom. They are something else entirely. For freedom is the same as appreciation. It is the same as empowerment. It is the same as joy. It is the same vibration as love. And in love, there is no ill.
Though I Have Certain Thoughts About Freedom, We All Choose Our Thoughts Independently. Let Us Celebrate That Independence. Happy Independence Day!
Spread Some Joy Today--by choosing so.