There is a deep yearning from within each of us to be free. Even if we are not aware of it, it is there. It is there simply because freedom is our true nature prior to any other state. Reality is free, open and boundless and we are reality itself. Therefore any form of limitation will always be something we’ll attempt to go beyond.
Freedom – Your Inherent Birthright
Think about it: as human beings whenever we manage to create more freedom, we perceive it as good. When parents give more freedom to their children it is seen as good. When society gives more freedom to its citizens it is considered good. In other words, the freer you are, the more it feels right. It is not something that can be intellectualized, it is how things are. You can’t help it but want to be free. You were born this way. The only question we should ask ourselves is: are we searching real freedom or not?
It is pretty common that when presented with the opportunity to be more free, people will immediately seek to fulfill endless desires. More food, sex, travelling, partying. Only to find themselves in the end even more unhappy. How often do people get addicted to the false promise of money, believing it’ll set them free? It is crucial that we honestly check what it means to be truly free.
What is Real Freedom?
If you want to be truly free, can you achieve it by adding more and more experiences to your check-list? If so, how many experiences exactly do you need to consider yourself free? Let me ask it in a different way. If being free can be gained or accumulated doesn’t it by law mean it can also be lost? And if so, than can something that can be gained or lost be essentially free? You see, real freedom has to be such that it is itself free of anything. It has to be fundamental, not something you can either create or destroy. Think about the sky. Can you add more sky to it? Can you take sky away from it? It is just pure, untouched openness.
So the question is: can you find in you a freedom that is untouched? That nothing can be added to or taken away from? The truth is, that you and reality itself are totally free by nature. Reality has no boundaries except those we imagine. We divide the world into countries, but where are the actual borders? We say: I’m Christian and you are Jewish! And yet again, where can you find religious beliefs if not only in your thoughts? We think there is a separation between our inside and the outside world. But where exactly is it? Where your skin ends? Even science knows that when zooming in all you see is a dance of atoms.
Melting Away The Boundaries
After reading all the above, do you want to experience freedom? If so, then you’ll need to summon your deepest honesty and look inside. Check: is there really a separation between yourself and life? Is there a point, a certain distinct boundary you can detect that isolates you from reality? At first glance it seems there is. That’s because we were taught as a collective to believe that our sense of “I” is personal. So we always walk around imagining that there are many “I’s” out there. Many separate islands. It always seems there’s someone in our head observing it all.
But if you go deeper, you’ll start seeing through this illusion. You will see that the sense of an observing “I” is but an old ingrained habit. And it is what creates the sense of isolation and separation from reality and others. It is only made of thought – nothing more. What you are is in fact forever beyond it, always open and limitless.
Pure Silence – The Gateway
To reach the real depth of seeing things as they truly are you must be very very silent. For only in silence things can be seen without distortion or manipulation. In deep silence, as you go deeper, you’ll see that the sense of self is actually completely open and without a center. It doesn’t belong to anybody in particular. As you see that, the limited center you always believed yourself to be starts melting away. Finally you can experience reality as a totality. Finally you can meet others – be it people, flowers or the building nearby – so intimately. And this intimacy is freedom. It is meeting reality without separation.
Real freedom is not what most of us imagine. It is not some exciting experience. And while for the one who didn’t discover real freedom this statement can sound depressing, the one who knows it will rejoice. No experience, no matter how far out or powerful, can compare to the beauty, purity and openness of a reality and a life experienced without separation. This is a life of true meaning, depth and intimacy. Every moment is rich and full of wonder. Every encounter is truly touching. Is there something better than that?
Wonderfully put Tom!!
I’m happy it rings true to you dearest Sarah! 😉