The Dark Side of Freedom

    c.243bw Decl of IndependenceThe assaults on this country’s freedoms are not coming from without, but within. Daily more restrictive laws, edicts and mandates are handed down by those who are “supposed” to guard those freedoms. While debating whether to upload this post or not, I reminded myself again that no amount of darkness can extinguish the light of a single flame. If we all hold up our single flames, together we can light up the world .

    July 4th in the United States commemorates its severance from England all those many years ago. It’s a day to pause and give thanks for the country’s independence and the freedoms afforded its inhabitants.

    In honor of the occasion there will be a lot written about the price of freedom, the value of freedom, the importance of freedom, how freedom isn’t free, the need of constant vigilance regarding the freedoms of speech, attire, lifestyle choices, religions, and the like. However, there probably won’t be much written about the dark side of freedom. Ironically freedom’s dark side is also it’s greatest attribute ~ infinite possibility. (Infinite being the operative word.)

    Tunnel vision and wearing blinders connote narrow-mindedness. But aren’t they really salvaging your mind? Try to ponder all options and you will not only fail, you will go insane. It is impossible to encompass infinity. That said, there are infinite ways to experience circuit overload and overwhelmedness:

    *choices to elect
    *selections to ponder
    *alternatives to choose
    *electives to decide
    *options to select
    *decisions to make
    *boundaries to set

    c.287w infinite choicesDaily we are bombarded with the need to make choices, both large and small, because we have the freedom to do so. But really, does anyone even know how many social media outlets there are? How about brands of toothpaste? Shampoo? Soups? Gizmos? or Widgets? Does anyone really care? Does it even matter?

    I’m sure you’ve heard about the fear of the grass being greener on the other side of the fence. But now there’s also the concern of what type of grass is best, if any. Perhaps you should go native. But what if you think native plants are ugly even if better for the environment? Do you choose aesthetically pleasing or the health of Mother Earth?

    At age 16 or 17, do you really know what you want to do with your life? (Do you even know at 40, 50 or 60?) It’s expected you have some idea so you can decide if you’re going to pursue a higher education. With the cost of education almost untenable, that decision carries even more weight. And then what? Will you see a return on your investment? Even if you see a return on your investment, by 40, 50, or 60 would you wish you’d chosen differently? That said, why choose in the first place?

    Articles are starting to pop up regarding the Millennials’ aversion to “The Great American Dream.” Saddled by insane school debt, low-paying jobs, and witnessing the fallout from the Great Recession, marriage, home-ownership, cars, and the like aren’t really high on their list.

    c.289w oldish thank youOkay, so where does this leave us? Haven’t a clue. This is a mini-rant. A little ramble. A bit of stream of consciousness. That’s okay. Because of the freedom afforded me (at this time, in this place), I have this luxury. And for that, I give thanks to all those who came before me devoting, dedicating, and even foregoing their lives.

    Get Doodled!

    A custom, unique, one-of-a-kind, made-just-for-you Doodled Avatar.
    Avatars are your face in cyberspace. Avatars represent who and what you are. Click HERE for more information!

    Facebook Share Tweet Post Pin Post Subscribe by Email Subscribe by RSS Back to Top
    Sydney Avey - July 4, 2014 - 5:59 am

    A thoughtful post, Tana. It occurs to me that freedom is as much an internal construct as it is external, based on what we value and maintained by discipline and hard work. Embracing our freedom and examining our choices in the light of where we place our faith is a life’s work. I mourn our flaws as a country but I love our freedom. Thanks for helping us take a moment to think more deeply than tonight’s BBQ. Happy 4th!

    Tana Bevan - July 4, 2014 - 11:27 pm

    Sydney~Thank you. There’s a philosophy I’ve heard which believes what you focus on is what you get more of. Perhaps focusing on the good, will encourage more of it. If you think of each “Good” as a single flame, then as I wrote in the post, get enough of those single flames and you can light up the world. Hope your day was a good one.

    Sheila Bergquist - July 5, 2014 - 12:22 am

    Really like this post. And I love your single flame theory. We all need to ban together these days, that’s for sure. So much to think about!

    Tana Bevan - July 6, 2014 - 4:24 pm

    Sheila~The expression “No amount of darkness can extinguish the light of a single flame” has been a stalwart champion to me since the first time I heard it all those many years ago. :-)

    Sheila Bergquist - July 6, 2014 - 11:53 pm

    I love expressions and have a book full of the ones I’ve run acrossed over the years. It’s amazing and magical how just the right words can be so helpful.

    Tana Bevan - July 7, 2014 - 10:07 pm

    Sheila~From what I’ve seen, quotes, quotables, expressions, and the like are EXTREMELY popular!