The other night I was watching a documentary about women who had escaped from their tyrannical families and now consider themselves free – even though they were still on the run and in hiding so they couldn’t be found to be taken back for punishment and imprisonment again, or worse.
I don’t like watching shows like this as it always makes me sad that this sort of behaviour still goes on in societies around the world today. I am not blind to the fact that it even happens in our own ‘free’ country of Australia. The only difference is the way in which it gets covered up. It makes me sad for the women themselves, it makes me sad for children involved, it makes me sad for their families and it makes me sad for all of us as a human race in general that this sort of behaviour still exists.
Money, believed power, blackmail, bullying and threats do not make you a bigger, better person, it only makes you weaker, more shallow, darker and more weighed down. It is never right or ethical. It never makes you a happy person and it never is ever justified.
Here in Australia I believe we are truly living in one of the best countries in the world. Yes we have droughts, yes we have bush fires, yes we have flooding, but these are a part of nature that we learn to live with and live through. It is a part of evolution, or God/Goddess’s way, depending on your view point.
Our government, despite what some people may have you to believe, is relatively democratic and fair. Our justice system does have a long way to go before I would could it just and appropriate, but we are free to make choices and we are free to live in relative peace without the ominous threat of warfare, terrorism or extortion on our doorstep on a daily basis.
I have never lived in another country or in another society to what we have here, but immediate family members have. I have heard some of their stories they have shared with me, and I am truly thankful each day that this is the country they decided to move to and call their own.
Whenever I walk outside, or even just look out the window to watch the world go by, I say a silent thank you to my family for making this place their home. The older I get, the more thankful for this I am. I don’t know if it is something that comes with age as I have lived more, experienced more, seen more, heard more and done more, or if it is purely sentimental or emotional. Either way, I am truly thankful.
The cold is one thing I dislike and despite the fact I don’t like Winters and it gets colder here than what I like, I learn to live with it and appreciate it’s beauty. I have learnt to understand that Winter is a time for rest, a time for death or going within so that new things can be born and come to life with the approaching Spring. I could not image growing up or living in the countries my families came from to be here. Winter here means we can still get outside and move about, we don’t have to feel like we are trapped inside and we don’t have to go cold. We have the choice to venture out in it or not. We have the choice of how we heat our homes and how we stay warm.
That is one thing that Freedom does mean – Choice.
Freedom means we have options and choices.
If there is something we don’t like, we can choose again another option. It may not be totally what we would prefer, but it will either make the first option look better or worse – depending what is being offered. Either way, it is still an option and a choice for you to make.
As a society in general, we have a choice in jobs we take, clothes we wear, how we style our hair, what car we drive, how to spend our money, who we socialise with, where we live, what we do in our down time, when to party and celebrate, when to rest and recuperate, what shows we watch on tv, what phone provider we have, what we search for on the internet. There are just so many choices we have and we take them for granted. We truly are privileged, in that sense.
We may gripe and grumble about our jobs, about our income, about the weather, about our clothes, about our cars, about a number of other insignificant matters, but we always have a choice and we always have the option to do something differently to change our circumstances.
It is up to us to change what we are not happy about, but at least we have the choice and at least we have options.
Yes this country does have laws and structure in place, but that is for the good of our society as a whole. It also means that these laws and structures can and do get updated from time to time as it takes into account the way our society is changing and adapting to new ways of life. Admittedly, the laws are structures are not always as up to date as they need to be, but in general, as a whole, it works. Again this is a choice that allows for our freedom.
Perhaps you are at work at the moment reading this. Does your boss know that you are reading this article at the moment? Aren’t you meant to be working? Will you get fired for reading this if your boss finds out? Is it an article you will share with colleagues and family members? Would you get into trouble for sharing this type of content? It is highly unlikely that anything untoward will happen to you for reading this, let alone if you are reading this during working hours. You see, that in itself is a freedom of choice. You have the freedom to read this even though you are employed to be doing a particular job at this time and you aren’t doing that job. Freedom.
Next time you are sitting in traffic grumbling about how long it is taking, or next time you are grumbling about how cramped the public transport system you are using is, remind yourself it is your choice, that you have other options and you have that right to choose how you get about, where you work and where you live. That is freedom.
Freedom does not necessarily mean you can do what you want when you want with no strings attached or no consequences. Freedom does not mean having to be alone or by yourself. Freedom does not mean you are cut off or exiled. Freedom does not mean free.
Freedom is about having the ability to choose what path you will take, about the choices you will make according to your own values.
Freedom is about living a life that is making you happy.
Freedom is about not just living a life, but thriving in that life so you can grow, expand your knowledge, change your beliefs, experience more and not just wonder about life and other ways of being, but being able to learn about them, experience them and sharing what you have learnt with others.
Freedom is wonderful so please don’t take it for granted. Please try to always remember to look around you, to take in the beauty of nature, of the beauty in the man made structures even, and be thankful we have them as they can make our life much easier or bearable.
Please also try to be thankful for your freedom as there are many women, children and even men in not only our society, but all around the world who do not have the freedoms, the options, the choices we have.
For me personally, one of the highlights of my freedom is the place I call home. The house I live in, the land it sits on, the town it is in, the region it is situated in, in the country it is, cut off from the rest of the world, almost isolated, by a vast expanse of water.
What are some of the choices you are free to make, or that you have made and that you take for granted?