Random Blog Clay Feet: November 12, 2008
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Wednesday, November 12, 2008


I got to thinking this morning about freedom. It came to my attention while I was remembering one of my own failures recently and how it related to my own freedom to choose what I do with my time. I thought about why I sometimes make the wrong choices even though I know it is not best for me and then I wonder what the real underlying reason is for me making those decisions. Thats when the issue of freedom came into the mix.

What I am starting to sense is that true freedom can only be enjoyed by advancing in true maturity. This may seem simplistic at first but I am always exploring the “whys” behind things to better understand how my mind works and understand others as well. So I wanted to think a bit more about this issue of freedom and I began to ask myself what freedom really is.

Right now I am thinking that freedom, at least in one important sense, is the removal or absence of artificial restraints. These restraints may be physical or they might be social or emotional. But freedom means that I am not inhibited or controlled by another person or institution or even artificial rules.

It is easy to observe this in the process of growing up and the increasing freedoms that we allow children to enjoy as they get older and learn to have more internal self-control. They learn skills and reasoning, but more importantly they learn to self-regulate and utilize their minds and hearts to make informed decisions based on various reliable sources of information and personal experience. They learn from cause and effect as well as learning from the wisdom of others who have experienced things they have not had to. They learn to consult and seek guidance instead of thinking they have all the wisdom necessary for life and as a result they are entrusted with more responsibility and given more latitude to make independent choices in their lives.

The amount of freedoms granted to young people by wise mentors and parents will be determined by the evaluation of the safety involved in the young person's abilities and preparedness for the next level of freedom. Safety does not mean that a person will never make a mistake but is based on the person's willingness to coordinate with others as well as acquiring personal training to prepare them for greater responsibility.

Preparing for greater freedom and responsibility involves synchronizing the mind with the principles that govern the circumstances for which a person is being trained. It is learning the skills, learning the potential problems as well as the correct way to do things and learning to have a level of self-confidence while interacting properly with others around them. It also involves learning to balance the various parts of the being to better function in ways that are both effective and helpful.

I decided to take this concept of freedom out to its logical extreme potential conclusion. And even though this world's system of restrictions and permissions is a far cry from God's view of real freedom, there are some parallels. Those who misuse their freedoms to inflict problems on others people's lives often find their own freedoms curtailed. The world's system of imprisonment for nearly anything and everything that crosses the whims (laws) of the ones in power are not a good example to examine to understand God's ways of justice. But the cause and effect relationship is still often valid.

But in the realm of true reality toward which we are all moving and must all live within sooner or later when the artificial system of this world finally collapses, we will have a much clearer view of what freedom is all about and how much God values it far more than we ever do.

One thing that came to my attention about freedom is that real freedom always involves a level of selflessness. Those who desire freedom for the purposes of serving their own desires and cravings do not understand the true nature of freedom. For real freedom has far more to do with internal peace and serving others than it has to do with allowing us to indulge ourselves without limitations. When we use our freedom to selfishly serve our own needs more than using it to improve our ability to bless others, we are on the road to losing our freedoms instead of improving them. This is not so much because of an arbitrary decision imposed on us as it is a natural result of the principles inherently involved. Freedoms misused are squandered away and sooner or later are lost.

In the kingdom of reality which is where heaven operates and toward which all of our destinies will ultimately be determined by our current choices, I believe that we will find that God intends for us to return to the full freedom that was once known in the universe before sin was ever thought of in the mind of Lucifer. Back in those times the angels and other created beings didn't even realize that there was such a thing as laws governing the universe. They simply lived them out naturally and their hearts and minds always functioned in loving, selfless service and praise in whatever capacity they found themselves involved in.

I think that quite possibly at some point in the future eternity after sin has been long gone from the scene that there is coming a point of perfect freedom again. All of the surviving beings living in the joys and perfection of paradise will once again find themselves so perfectly synchronized with the principles of reality that they may no longer even notice that there are underlying laws involved in day to day living. In fact, the following text came to my find that now makes more sense in this context.

But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, "Know the LORD," for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the LORD; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more. (Jeremiah 31:33-34 NRSV)

The ultimate goal for most teaching is to increase our ability to enjoy freedom through the combining of greater knowledge and maturity. What this text seems to be saying is that there may come a time when we will be so mature and have the principles of reality so internalized that there will no longer be any need for such teaching. That sounds to me like the most ultimate freedom that anyone could ever imagine.