What is freedom? A search on Google yields the following definition:
What happens then if we "act, speak, or think" as we wish? Let's say I decide to do something I wanted, an unexplainable urge, like steal a can of Red Bull from a 7Eleven. I walk to the refrigerator section, take a quick glance around to make sure no one's looking, stuff a can in my coat, and walk out. Then what? Home free? I get away with a free Red Bull. Yippie! And if I don't get away with it...well, then it's probably not so great. I get yelled at? The clerk runs after me and tackles me down in the parking lot. Everyone looks at me and I feel a deep sense of shame for stealing something as trivial as Red Bull? Maybe the clerk calls the police? Jail time? A fine? Court? Will they impound my car? My brain spirals to the worst possible scenario.
Most people would say no, it's not worth it (well, that and also depending on what kind of coat I'm wearing). They would restrain themselves accordingly and pay for the Red Bull like a chump. Now back at the 7Eleven refrigerator section, I weigh the consequences: free Red Bull vs. jail? Comparable to an ROI, is the return (free Red Bull) worth the investment (possible jail time)? I analyze the situation and by this time, I've been standing in front of the refrigerator section with a suspicious coat on for way too long. The clerk is looking at me. I panic. I grab something from the refrigerator and pay for it and leave. When I get back to my car, I notice I grabbed regular instead of sugar free, but I drive off anyway. I don't want the clerk looking at me anymore. Not only did I pay, I also didn't get what I wanted. Great. But this is still better than jail time.
However you call it--restraint, order, control, governance, intelligence--this negation of an urge in the self comes with consciousness. That negation. That denial. That ability to see myself in the not-so-distant doomed future and stop before it's too late--the fear, the shame, the remorse that sets in, none of which is actually happening (not yet, at least). This non-reality, it's all in my head.
Anyway, back to that definition of freedom:
Does consciousness conflict with freedom? Or partial freedom? And what is consciousness? What is want? What is reality? What about choice? What about passivity? What about thought? I'll end it there. We could go on forever. My head is starting to hurt and probably from all that Red Bull.
NOTE: This is not an endorsement of Red Bull.
Bits & Pieces
A place for experimentation, a place for pieces unpolished and unpublished, a place to work out thoughts and ideas for larger collections. Typos aplenty. Enjoy (or not).