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11-Freedom

QUESTION 6: The purpose of our life

In the Netherlands, there is a freeway between Rotterdam and Amsterdam that is absolutely flat because it is under sea level, like most of the country.                                                                                                                                 You can see a bridge above the freeway. So far nothing unusual until you notice that there is a canal going over this bridge and you are driving under the boats. The canal is connected to the ocean on a level above yours. Living below sea level turns everything upside down. That makes you more open-minded.

They have a zoo where the visitors are kept in a very dark hallway. They can barely see each other. Along the hallway are open windows. Through one of the windows, you can see birds flying around in a well-lit room. There is nothing to prevent the birds from flying through the open window and coming to you in the hallway. Nothing except the light. The birds stay in the well-lit room and don't want to explore the darkness they can see outside. The birds are prisoners of the light. Their eyesight that allows them to see the world can also be their jail. This also applies to humans. Our senses can become our jail.

Through another window you can see snakes.

There is nothing between you and the snakes, except some ice.

The snakes don't come through the window looking for lunch because they would have to go over the ice. The snakes don't like the cold. They are prisoners of heat.

Those animals don't know that they are kept prisoner. They would have to get outside their cage to realize that there is a cage.

We are prisoners of our senses like the birds are prisoners of the light and the snakes are prisoners of heat. We are prisoner of our eyesight, our hearing, our temperature, the air that we breathe… We are prisoners of our body. You could say that fish are prisoners of the water, and the fish could say: “There is life above sea level. This life is prisoner of the air. It is a zoo for human beings!”

We also become prisoners of our own creations.

 - After we create a language, we must think in that language. Our thinking must follow the logic of the language that we speak.

 - Bergson  said that our life is littered with all the personalities that we could have been. All through our life we make choices and we become prisoners of those choices. As you get older, changing profession becomes more and more difficult.

 - We resist change. We accept innovation when it is adding something new to our life. We resist it, with all our might, when innovation tries to make us change our habits. Americans use the metric system in their currency (Dollars and cents). They also use it in radio (Hertz – kilo Hertz and Mega Hertz) They use it in the memory of their computers (bits – Mega bits – Giga bits).  They use the metric system everywhere as long as they don’t have to change their habits. When it comes to the gallon and the inch, you hit a wall. Habits create that wall. We create ourselves the bars of our cage. one by one. The difficulty is not to learn something new. It is to free ourselves from our old habits.

Searching for freedom is like looking for ‘Life’ or ‘consciousness’. We are told about

Economic freedom - Freedom of assembly - Freedom of association - Freedom of movement - Freedom of religion - Freedom of speech - Freedom of the press - Freedom of thought.

We are told about all the possible manifestations of freedom like we are told about the manifestations of life instead of talking about life itself.

We have the same problem with freedom that we have with consciousness, life, love….  We want them, we long for them, we spend our life searching for them, we never can reach them.

 

To say that we want to be free is another way to say that we want to get above our glass ceiling.

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