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“In rivers, the water that you touch is the last of what has passed and the first of that which comes; so with present time.” – Leonardo da Vinci

Freedom. It’s something we all want, but certainly not something we all think we have. But in saying that, one must then ask what freedom is, and what it means to truly be free.

Is freedom something to be attained? Or is it something that one innately possesses? Our logical mind would have us believe that – like happiness – freedom is something we can only attain when our outward circumstances reflect our ideal realities. Problem with that answers is, there is always more to want, and always stuff you won’t have.

Maybe then freedom isn’t something that is determined by external circumstances. Maybe freedom lies solely within you.

The question then becomes, how do you realize what you already have if you can’t see it? The only answer is that you have to feel it. How do we harmonize our mental and emotional sides?

Humans are emotional beings, that is obvious. In trying to understand why we feel certain ways, it might be helpful to think of our emotions like water. Just as water flows through the body, so too do our emotions. And just like water takes its form from the outside environment by following the path of least resistance, our emotions do the same – i.e. they have no intention, they have no direction. They just are – they simply arise as we experience life, reactions to our environments based on our inner world (perceptions, biases, memories and unconscious programming).

By paying attention to our emotions and by trying to understand why they are occurring – what has happened in the past to make us react in in a certain way in the present – we can have better control over them. We must learn to listen to ourselves in order to really know ourselves. This is where feeling FREEDOM comes in. In understanding our emotions better, we will also come to understand that we are not defined by how we feel, that we are NOT destined to always feel that way, and that we can in fact, change the way we feel when we find ourselves in certain circumstances in the future.

When we suppress or deny our emotions, we create a disconnect from our true nature, but it is only when we connect with ourselves that we can connect with others.

Yes, it is a bonus to understanding ourselves better – in recognizing the fact that emotions are simply reactions to the outside world – that we can then start to recognize these same processes in others. We can come to recognize that there are patterns of reactions, thereby creating an atmosphere of empathy and understanding. When we realize that any given emotion happens for a reason, and that  “it too shall pass” in us, we realize that it is the same for other people as well. You are NOT defined by your emotions – nobody is. Now, we can see that there are things that connect us all, and we can break down the walls that our egos have created to divide us. It is only through human connection that we can make any changes in the outside world. instead of pointing fingers, we begin to see ourselves in others, creating a bridge between their heart and ours. This is the gift of spiritual freedom

With so much injustice and oppression around us, the only real control we have is our control over ourselves – which is why this path to understanding our emotional sides and realizing our ultimate freedom is so important.

If there is one thing that nobody can take away from us, it is our faith. Faith in love, faith in ourselves, and faith in others. This faith comes from knowing that change is possible. 

We cannot let hatred and judgement drag us down to its level. We cannot give it power, or let it steal our freedom. Fighting fire with fire only begets more fire. We must pour water on it, and let that shit flow. It is only when we can rise above it, and see that we are really all just the same, that we can break the cycle. By choosing acceptance and forgiveness – for both ourselves and for others – we free ourselves from hatred and fear’s burning grip. When we reconnect with who we are on the inside, and welcome our body’s fluid nature,, we can let go of resistance and begin to adapt to our surroundings.

“Nothing is softer or more flexible than water, yet nothing can resist it.” – Lao Tzu

Taken from The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy

As humans, adaptability is what determines whether we survive or not. Acceptance doesn’t mean rolling over and doing nothing. It just means releasing control over the situation, and gaining control over oneself. We must centre ourselves, rather than let outside circumstances throw us around. When we are able to come from a place of self-empowerment, we can be sure we are acting with clarity and understanding, with the highest good of all in mind. That has to be our ultimate goal if we are ever going to live in a more peaceful world.

Conversely, if we come from a place of victimhood and disempowerment, we become clouded in our judgement and we can only react. We go into the battle, already having lost it. Before fighting with others, make sure you are not fighting with yourself.

Freedom can only be attained when you have absolutely no expectations of yourself, and you put no limitations on yourself.

Free yourself by being present. Take your power back by staying in the flow of life.

Acceptance is key. 

Remember, we have and always have had the power to be free, even if the outside world tries to make us believe otherwise. Faith lives within all of us, equally, forever and always. Don’t let distractions of the past or the future cloud your experience.

As within, so without.

water gif

Through the acknowledgement of every person’s individual birthright to spiritual freedom, we can find unity.

Through the appreciation of our differences, we can find similarity.

We cannot approach freedom from a lack-based mentality, expecting the outside world to provide it for us. We must first feel free. Nobody can take what is already yours. We all want peace; we just might see it differently. Claim yours today. Be free.

Peace and love,

~ Q