I certainly do.
In one sense I crave freedom… it’s what this blog was born out of. Freedom from the traditional 9 to 5 job, from a traditional life, from the (perceived) monotony of the same daily routine for months, years… decades.
Alternately, I crave safety. It’s biological. You probably crave it too. Safety, companionship, love, a family unit, community.
There is a continual tug of war going on inside of my head. Which do I prize more: freedom or the human need for closeness, for one’s tribe, and for roots?
The answer is: I don’t know.
Perhaps that is how it should be. Our desire should always be tempered with our biological need for other humans. Without it one can all too easily careen into hedonism, forgetting responsibilities, commitments, and the needs of those around her.
Alternately without the drive for freedom, exploration, and adventure, few things would ever get done. If it was just about preserving the status quo life and living would stagnate, and finally begin to stink.
Sometimes it feels like if we care about freedom we can never “tie ourselves down”…
… to other people, places, paths. It’s one reason we have perpetual bachelor/lorettes who would be happier married but don’t want to limit their options; it’s why we have the paradox of choice. Sometimes avoiding commitments in the name of freedom can be far more costly than simply picking a road and sticking with that choice.
Luckily for me, for us… true freedom comes from inside. From your mind, your heart, your connection with your soul. True freedom emanates out from within.
Freedom from anger, hate, jealousy, fear, bitterness, resentment. One is only really free when your mind and heart are so full of love that the negative emotions can’t squeeze in.
True freedom can be had in a jail cell, or on a remote beach, but it takes some work (if you want that kind of freedom I would highly suggest a first step be reading this book, it was life changing for me).
So let us end the love-hate relationship we have with freedom. We don’t have to sacrifice freedom for connections, instead embrace both freedom and the scary sides of personal attachment at once.