September 10


Today's quotation:

Free will is not the liberty to do what one likes, but the power of doing whatever one sees ought to be done, even in the very face of otherwise overwhelming impulses.  There lies freedom indeed.

George MacDonald

Today's Meditation:

We value our freedom, and historically, many people the whole world over enjoy much higher levels of freedom these days than human beings ever have on such a large scale.  It seems, though, that we've reached a point at which we take our freedom for granted, and there is a great danger that as more and more people do so, we'll start to see our freedom more as an entitlement than as a great privilege and responsibility.

For a person who recognizes the incredible power of his or her freedom, it means that we have many chances to act on issues that need to be acted on, no matter what their scale.  Our freedom is a gift, and as with all gifts, we have a choice how we can use it.  The freedoms that we have on a large scale affect our free will, too-- our ability to decide what we will do on a personal level.  It obviously doesn't mean the ability to drink as much alcohol as we want and then jump into a car and drive around town.  It doesn't mean that we can help ourselves to the money in the cash register at the supermarket, either.

But our free will does give us the ability to affect many different aspects of many people's lives, if we act according to what we know ought to be done.  And the fact that I have the ability to act upon my free will, following my conscience when and how I need to, puts a great deal of responsibility into my hands to act in ways that will benefit the greater good.  And if I can learn to act in those ways consistently, then I truly am learning how to be free.

Questions to consider:

What does your freedom mean to you?  What does "free will" mean to you?

How can you use your free will for the good of others?

What will happen in the world if all people start to take their freedoms for granted?

For further thought:

There are two freedoms:  the false, where one is free to do as one likes; the true, where one is free to do what one ought.

Charles Kingsley

more thoughts and ideas on freedom



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