I’ve given considerable thought over the years as to the nature of freedom. And I’ve discovered in certain periods of my life that there is a profound difference between having an inordinate amount of recreational time at your disposal and being someone who possesses those attributes of a free man.
Rousseau once wisely observed that “man is born free and everywhere he is in chains.”
As I look back on my life I truly appreciate all those places where I stumbled but never fell. My feet – by the grace of God – time after time, evaded the proverbial snare.
It occurred to me recently – the thought of which I wrote down – “You don’t know what being free is until you’ve comprehended the opposite of what it would be to not be free.”
I’ve done some significant downsizing over the years so my possessions at present are few. I mention this only to frame what I am about to say. And that is I am bound to nothing: I owe money to no one. I have no criminal record. I have nothing to flee from and no where I must flee to.
My needs are simple: A place to run. A place to write. Books to read. Tasty but nourishing food. A couple of cocktails with which to end the day.
And I desire nothing more.
My resources are sufficient to sustain me. And I perceive my life as be portable to where I can go anywhere.
So I am grateful for all these things and as such I am thankful to be a free man.
PS – But as Lillian Hellman once noted, “Freedom costs you a great deal.” And this I’ve also found to be true.
I suspect that it would be less costly to follow the rules and always do what is expected of you. Never question. And never stray across the yellow line even if the huarache trail leads you to Mexico.