In “Romancing Destiny,” (my prior post), I promised to explore freedom and commitment in this entry. Well, that would take an entire book, wouldn’t it? I don’t have time this afternoon to write that book (and plenty of philosophers have done a much better job of it than I could). Besides, you probably don’t have the time or desire to read a tome do you?
So, let’s just dip our toes in the waters of freedom, splish-splash a bit and I invite you to participate by splashing some of your thoughts across the comments section.
I don’t know about you, but I have this thing with freedom. It is my highest value. I want to be and feel free. Sometimes I know I am free, but I don’t feel like I am. Sometimes, I know I am at choice, but I don’t feel like I am.
Sometimes freedom chases me down an alley named Free From. I want to be free from debt, free from some nagging obligation or responsibility, free from worry, free from fear.
Sometimes I chase freedom down a pathway named Free To. I want to be free to explore, free to go to the beach, free to choose, free to spend the afternoon playing music, free to live my life the way I want to live it.
Mostly, I just want to experience freedom. I want know, really know, that I am at choice.
Sometimes, I mistakenly think that if I make a decision or a commitment, I am no longer at choice. I am giving up my freedom. Then it starts to chase me again. I am running from commitment, ruing a decision.
When I have participated in that cycle often enough, I gather evidence that making a decision is a huge deal. Faced with any decision to be made, I blow it up all out of proportion and then I go into endless gear-spinning indecision; permanent procrastination. I am pretty talented at making myself miserable this way. Ironically, in my attempt to preserve freedom, I slap myself into a self-made straight-jacket; constricted and immobile. Where is freedom now?
Finally, I am in so much pain that I find relief by telling myself that it’s just a decision and I can make a new decision later if it doesn’t work out. At the very least, I can learn from the decision. So I close my eyes and point. I might as well be using a dartboard. I hope for the best, and revel in the immediate sensation of post-internal-war peace.
Commitment is another story. Commitment means I stand by my decision. I will not change my mind. I am making a promise and I will not break it. So, if I think that once I have made a commitment, I am no longer at choice, as a freedom lover, I’m going to really drag my feet. I’m going to want volumes of information, warranties and a money-back guarantee.
But to whom or what am I really making a commitment? And when I make that commitment, am I handing over my free will and choice as some sort of dowry?
Cheryl Richardson shared a process she uses, which I love. To paraphrase, she said she makes a list of absolute yeses based upon her values, mission and purpose. When she has to make a decision or commitment, she asks herself if the opportunity resonates with her absolute yes list. If not, she passes.
What I take from this is that I can gather my information from sources other than the internet and friend’s opinions. I am informed by my values, the alignment and integrity of my Body, Mind, Spirit, Heart and my vision or understanding of my soul’s purpose. My warranty is my trust in myself and my faith in the process, God/Goddess and all that is. My guarantee is remembering that I am the creator of how and who I am being with whatever circumstances arise.
The more I walk in that integrity, being informed in that way, the more I act from deep intuition and true knowing.
Therein, perhaps, is the path of freedom. When I stop asking and start knowing.
I notice I wrote “ the path of freedom.” It is not the path to freedom or the path of being free from.
There are few sign posts on this path and everything is feedback which informs me of the ways in which I still hold myself prisoner in the shadows of my being. It takes courage (Coeur-age) to walk in the shadows.
Somehow or other I suspect that on this path, commitment is joyfully offered and decision is swift heart-informed action.
More and more I am dreaming myself on this path, though I wander off into the thickets time and time again. Along the way there will be celebrations and there will be disappointments, for others as well as for me.
I want to remember to receive them all with grace and humility.
Who will walk this path with me?
Copyright(c) September 2009, Kathy J Loh, All Rights Reserved