Life is a journey!
A hard strive for exactly what?
What are you looking for in life that makes you FREE, and what follows; happy, content and healthy.
Is life about healing? Partly yes. We say, “draw a red line, let go, move on”. We come to a point of forgiveness and feel free!
So freedom would mean not being criticized, accepted as we are and cheered in our quest to complete healing.
To live in a free land, to have a sense that I am safe, secure, respected as a human being, able to thrive, develop my talents, my gifts, to be part of a nation, contribute to a community, is worth more that silver and gold. Unfortunately, not all of us have this privilege.
The right of freedom has been abused in my country for centuries!
How does the abuse process start at all?
I believe by decision. Someone does something evil and another person does no react to it or says, it is fine, it is all right. And the domino effect goes on. Until someone else breaks it. Being forced to home school my son due to government restrictions, we have been going through history lessons. When he learnt that Poland had disappeared from the World Map in 1795 due to political decisions. He was shocked!
To him the freedom means to go out of the house to see his friends. He lives by his own rules, defines his own borders and finds it extremely painful being forced to be fitted in the box. Such are typical Asperger’s syndrome kids (the spectrum of Autism).
How do I explain to him the restrictions that are illogical – you are not allowed to walk in the forest under the penalty of 1-6 000 euro. From now on you are not allowed to take care of your wellbeing just because some irrational official decided so, and the uneducated crowd gave it an applause. But some people can –like hunters, police, firefighters. You are not allowed to leave the house if you are under 18 at all. What if you are a young parent (17, with a baby) can you take a stroller and freely walk the streets? So many irrational, restrictions we are bombarded day by day with.
“But I haven’t done anything wrong!”
Neither have any of us. We have lived a decent life, healthy, respectful, being inspiration to other people. Now we are treated as those who broke the law, we are dropped into the same box by the merciless system. Citizens are fined, against the law, against the constitution, without any right to report to the court but under the order of immediate enforceability. The government is focused only on the elections, breaks the law, does irrational moves. Locks us down like we were all irrational, uneducated people who need to be ruled only by the rod.
Due to absurdity of regulations in Poland you will often hear, “oh well, such is law” which you can translate as, “you do not fit into our box, sorry!” This is a problem of Poland, a country ruled by officials. Am I used to this system?, of course! All my life! I grew up in it. This is as people in Siberia say, “Normalna”. But do I agree with it , Never!
Restrictions have never brought positive harvest. They bring the worst evil of us , due to the feeling of abuse, injustice, hatred or envy. All those negative traits, we were hoping to get rid of, are now being sparked again.
I have been travelling for most of my life and felt free anytime I was on the road. As soon as I was stagnant, I felt like some particles of me were dying.
Anytime I was abroad I felt accepted, allowed to be EXACTLY who I needed to be, yet whenever returning home I felt heavy, like I do not belong here. Why does my sub consciousness react in the same way all the time, was I born in the wrong country? Or maybe I do not belong to any particular region at all. Maybe my place is in the open space; the fields, mountains, oceans, hills. Do I have a right to declare it, Do I have a right to feel this way-FREE?
My friends must have heard this phrase gazillion of times . It is an inner feeling, some 6th sense of the freedom gene I carry inside me that screams! Rebels against the abuse, irrationalism I have been witnessing all my life in Poland.
In the early 80’s we went with my dad to the RFN (Federal Republic of Germany), he bought me a navy blue blouse with colorful stripes on the shoulders. As soon as I took it to school I was rebuked by the teacher and asked to either take it off or hide the colors, by fastening them with the safety pins. Quite bizarre, right? I was always problematic because I was questioning teachers with, “but why?” . The 80’s and 90’s was time to learn not to question, not to rebel, not to look straight in the eye (yes, I was also punished for this number of times). It was a season to quietly accept. Freedom depended on perspective you had.
The food rationing, from the 1982, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martial_law_in_Poland
If you were tired of fighting for it, overworked, abused, you no longer defined it. You thought it did not exist anymore. You were robbed out of your dignity, disillusioned.
For others it could be purchased, bribed, forced. There was always a high price to pay as in the Martial Law the 80’s . I was only 6 than, but the picture of tanks under my window, people being beaten up with rubber rods by the militia will never disappear from my memory. That’s why my generation can be easily ruled by fear, by abuse because we saw it with our own eyes and we are part of it. And going along with it the feeling of shame,” What will other people say” Oh, I hate it to my very core!
If you were lucky to taste freedom, somehow by undefined rules and explanations, even in a totalitarian system by drawing into your life people who were different, who were like a fish swimming against the tide, inspiring you to seek something undefined, something like a super force, you would never forget it and would follow that internal drive to satisfy your longing, the call that is within you to feel it again and again and again. I have it in my veins, it is under my skin, this burning passion that pushes me forward to explore, to go after what my heart is longing forth.
I asked few of my friend , also from other countries of the world, to define freedom from their own personal view, as a human being . I would like to share their words with you as all of what they shared resonates with my heart. Most of them appeared in my life magically, as we all follow the same rule; Nothing happens by coincidence!
What is freedom?
It is a freedom of choice , of making a choice by yourself not by imposed restrictions, or the gravity of the situation. It is under your own discernment weather right or wrong as you are granted this privilege.
I am sitting by the fire in my yard tonight contemplating on positive aspects of the present situation in Poland. One that comes to mind is the abundance of time. Suddenly I can devote it to all the activities such as homeworks with kids in no rush or stress, heart to heart conversations, home chores or just being bored in a child like way. I also appreciate the location we live in, out of the city center. I feel empathy to all of those who life in the block of flats, trapped.
The negative side is , we were robbed of our freedom!!. Reading yesterdays regulation of not being allowed to run in the forests made me mad! I felt like a criminal deprived of the last drop of joy! I felt like an animal in the Zoo who sits in a cage. I suddenly realized how much freedom I had lost; ability to leave the house whenever I wanted and go anywhere I wanted , especially to the mountains that I love above all.
I’ve always appreciated been able bodied and been able to get outside and explore footpaths and trails, to be amongst nature, I’ve always seen this as a form of freedom and also a blessing… Freedom is been able to travel and visit my family… Freedom is been to choose my own faith… Freedom is having the right to express myself… Freedom to have my own taste in music, film and art… Freedom is been able to choose what I eat, drink and look after my body and well being and go to the gym if I wish. Sadly during this current crisis, some of those freedoms have been taken away, I can no longer visit my family, which I find hard at the moment whilst my dad is fighting cancer. My church has now closed its doors for now so my freedom to attends services and worship there has now been taken away… however this has helped me appreciate the freedom that technology gives us… it allows me to communicate via video call or through photos to my family… the church are providing online church sessions… My gym is closed but people are doing live training sessions on YouTube to carry out in your home. At the moment in the UK we are allowed outside for one form of exercise a day… this has made me totally appreciate the first freedom I mentioned even more so and also not to take it for granted when all this blows over…
Freedom is a curiosity of the world. Hunger that drives us in every moment. It is a possibility to run ahead and pause along the way. Freedom is a laugher on the face of a stranger, cold which pierces you to the bone and the sunrise which warms up your body and soul.
It may sound trivial but freedom is life. Ability to wander wherever I desire to go-I am not allowed do it now. Freedom is breathing the air I chose to breathe-I am not allowed do it now. Freedom of speech-I am not allowed do it now. To think what I want-I am not allowed do it now. Freedom to make love the way I want -I am not allowed do it now. Freedom is bravery and strength to change it. Freedom is a dance of body and soul, unrestricted, undefined by any other man. I have always associated freedom with dance. These are the thoughts I had after reading the regulation of not being allowed to enter the forests.
“Time changes everything except something inside us that is surprised by the change.” Thomas Hardy These days suddenly there is time. Time is plentiful and plentiful for thoughts and an inner introspection. This space may not have been given to you before. He suddenly wonders, “What am I going to do all this time?”, “I’ve never had that much space for me?” “Where was I before?”, “Where am I now?”, “Why am I here?”, “How did I get here?”, “How will I continue?”, “Will I make it?”
Multiple small questions but huge internal searches. All these individual searches lead to a common path in the search for the true identity of the self in time and space. Maybe it’s an opportunity to see more now. In my search for the authentic self, I allow myself to transform my image with maturity, love, respect, self-esteem and acceptance for all that I am and for all that I have experienced so far. Utilizing the time given to me in this unusual way, I am currently maturing and evolving. I accept all the difficulties and changes that have occurred so far in this journey.Changes give people strong personalities, while not moving from their position makes them weak, rigid for their personal development. Indeed, the self begins to evolve through adaptation, it does not consider the feelings of fear and insecurity that are created as obstacles. Worrying about the feeling of waiting in the here and now is not an obstacle.On the contrary, he understands that these are necessary stages of development for him and he is stoically waiting for the authentic change. Change, of course, is a long way off. It will not happen overnight. But by taking advantage of this global pause, one may see in it that one can benefit more. It is very likely that he will be able to give a little more space to create suitable ground for the development of his personal fruits. So, through the microscope of his individuality, he can look at everything that life is. A few thoughts on personal introspection. Courage and good strength.
Artemis, Grece Freedom is acceptance of what you are
Ability to make your dream come true. If you own a boat, you are a free Man.
For me freedom is two aspects. First relates to the law (unfortunately) as mutual respect both by the government and the citizens. Second, to personal freedom, the ability to make a choice, to live the way I choose to. Freedom ends when economical situation forces you to change your choice. The economical drive deprives us of independent choice. For me freedom is ability to decide and I am not talking about purchasing the new car or a TV.
I presently I feel more free than before, I do not need to rush or stress, I live In my own world, independent from other worlds. I do not care about not being able to go to the restaurants or huge shopping malls, I never did. I enjoy the long walks in the country as I did before. The only fear is losing my job. If that happens I will lose my freedom.
I love meeting people. When we entered the EU we were granted such freedom. I am an ultra runner and most of the distances I run are long and solitare . But in present times I miss social contacts, conversations shared. I am a member of an association Leśny Cross (Forrest Cross) which integrates, supports and motivates people to act together. Now due to present restrictions we work only through social media but try encouraging people to take care of themselves, so they not to go crazy being locked down.
Jarek , Poland
Freedom is a relaxation as you are following your own path. There is no fear, threat, anxiousness. You are not worried because you live according to your inner truth. As you live justly you trust yourself as treat others with dignity. You have nothing to hide. Freedom is not material so it cannot be taken from us. It is a state of inner ownership. A free man loves himself and appreciates his life as the highest value, and he treats another man in the same way. In any time, plentitude of famine a free man is humane, full of empathy. In those difficult times only those who are kind will survive, healed by the love from the heart not medicine. Love is a key.
Grażyna , Poland
To me personally freedom is ability to be 100% authentic.
*Note from the editor: The opinions by the writer belongs to her and doesn´t necessarily reflect the editors.