Freedom is an essence held in the highest esteem, desired with increased frequency as one
recognizes the presence of a particular control. As with all essences lacking clear definition, its
Our idea of freedom may derive from negating our idea of slavery. Free means "notslave"
or "not-forced-labor." If those in power did not literally enslave other races and groups,
how then would we understand freedom? What does freedom mean today as the old memories
fade from the time when antebellum laws sanctioning slavery ended with emancipation?
Dictionary-wise, freedom is liberation from the control of another person or some
arbitrary power. A prisoner in jail is said to be less free than a citizen. A prisoner in an abusive
relationship is dominated by another's aggressive behavior. A prisoner to various fears is caught
in the chains of personal psychic epidemia. There are prisoners to disease, fantasy, hunger, debt.
There are black market concubines, human rights violations, and legally sanctioned
discriminations in place; as well as institutions that may have begun with good intentions but
evolved unchecked to morph along corrupting and controlling lines.
Left uninhibited, the arbitrary-powers-that-be manipulate ideas of freedom to fit a special
agenda. When said powers promote a typology that disregards the existence of an injustice,
those under the spell find a comfortable happiness living with invisible restraints.
However, a choice must be made when a type of imprisonment is given name. The
prisoner can attempt to break from jail, quit the job, leave the relationship, reject the rules of a
given system, or create or escape into a station of the underground railroad. There are
aftereffects for making a choice. For some the potential repercussions are too burdensome to
handle, preferring Things As They Are as opposed to failure or death.
This is a personal message to those who are choosing, who refuse to be told a meaning of
encounters but instead investigate the experience of encounters, who examine internal and
external processes to find an equitable distribution of burdens and benefits that comes with
societal living. The aim is to maximize the possibility of freedom for all (not select groups), and
minimize the controls without creating outcomes more deadly and controlling than the very
situation we intended to heal.