Why are freedom and the right to self-determination such critical factors in guaranteeing the successful evolution of human consciousness? Why is the call of freedom resounding so strongly within human hearts all across the world during these turbulent times of transition?
As one way of answering these questions, we offer a bold statement drawn from the Ageless Wisdom teaching and from our group experience here at Meditation Mount.
“Without the freedom to choose our own personal path through life we cannot learn the needed lessons of ‘wielding creative power and assuming responsibility for our actions’ through lived daily experiences. Without this needed freedom, the goal of self-realization will not be possible.”
We are learning the principles of being a creator inside a school housed within the Universe of Self. The basic lessons of being a wise god and steward of our own universe are those of Creativity and Responsibility. Without the spirit of freedom living inside this classroom, we cannot give birth to our own home-grown wisdom.
Self-realization is an intimate inner process of coming into resonant relationship with the One Life. Self-realization happens step-by-step as we give birth to fresh awareness that is registered and embodied inside the atoms of our total being. Nobody can give us self-realization – it is a personal ‘aha’ moment of the grandest order. Any new awareness is only cultivated and finally born through our own lived experiences and so without the freedom to choose and deal with the consequences of our own choices, we will never learn what it means to be a co-creative agent of Life.
Painful as though the growing process may be at times, self-realization requires a field of unconditional freedom in which to flower. Freedom and the sovereignty of Self are inalienable rights that lead us inexorably onwards upon the path of self-discovery and ensure an eventual state of enlightenment will be achieved.
Viewed from a macro-perspective, we are part of a great cosmic experiment to see if the fragmented One Life can, by its own volition, freely choose to make its way back to a greater realized state of pre-existing wholeness. We are each a fractal of this One Life traveling the long and winding journey Home. This is the story of the prodigal son and the prodigal daughter who, after choosing everything that their personal selves desire, consciously choose to return to the ‘Father’s House’ – the true spiritual homecoming that is only possible through the grace and gift of the freedom of choice.
This theme of freedom and self-determination is perhaps most keenly being felt during these tumultuous times within the field of politics. Ideally, politics is how we exercise our freedom by choosing the way in which we wish to live together and govern ourselves. However, as we view the present state of affairs in the world, we may be wondering just what it means to live in a ‘free society’ and what it will actually take from all of us to manifest this desired future where freedom reigns.
When the good of the whole is not the primary organizing principle and the ‘few’ are tempted to secure and use the resources of the whole system for their personal advantage and gain, we have an unjust and uncaring society on our hands.
Therefore, it may be timely to remind ourselves of that powerful declaration and prescient vision of freedom delivered by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1941 during his annual address to Congress. FDR proposed the following four basic freedoms as the foundation for a more just and healthy global society.
“In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms. The first is freedom of speech and expression – everywhere in the world. The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way – everywhere in the world. The third is freedom from want – which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants – everywhere in the world. The fourth is freedom from fear – which, translated into world terms, means a worldwide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion, that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor – anywhere in the world.”
So, what would our world look like today if each of us were to act upon this radical challenge and live according to the spirit of these Four Freedoms?
We could even draw up a personal Charter of Freedom that might sound something like this:
“I choose to live my life encouraging others to freely express themselves in speech and action. I choose to live my life welcoming others to worship God in their own way. I choose to live my life inspired by a spirit of generosity and justice so that others are not deprived of their legitimate needs and rights. I choose to cease all aggression towards others and to live my life based upon love, goodwill and harmlessness.”
We are witnessing a sobering reminder that when freedom of choice and the right of self-determination are absent then we have the rise of totalitarianism and dictatorship. This is the prison in which we are presently incarcerated.
In the Ageless Wisdom teaching the monumental collective task facing us is referred to as ‘freeing the prisoners of the planet’ – liberating ourselves from the material and emotional addictions and fixed beliefs that, in the words of the Buddha, keep us ‘chained to the wheel of re-birth’.
We are learning to stand in our own spiritual sovereignty – to make daily choices that support a greater purpose and serve all beings. It is a long and rocky road to freedom and self-realization. We are walking it together one step at a time and one day at a time.
May we finally wake up and understand that serving the Common Good is the greatest freedom we each possess.
In the Spirit of Freedom,
Michael Lindfield Board President Meditation Mount
For a more in-depth exploration of the topic of freedom we invite you to watch this recent View from the Mount recording https://meditationmount.org/view-from-the-mount-recording-april-3-2022/