Are we really free?

Are you, at this moment, a complete transcendence of your freedom? Do you think of yourself as a free being? Is freedom something that we can achieve, or is it something innate within us? What does freedom give you? Hold on; What is freedom?

Most of us would assume, without second thought, that we are free beings, that we have freedom to choose our lives, and to fashion them as we see fit. Is that the truth, or does it seem that the idea of freedom is only just that, an idea. To find out the truth we should look further into the root of our lives, by doing this we will have the opportunity to understand how our lives are not as free as we originally thought they were.


It is Saturday June 15th, 1989, Debra hears her alarm clock ring and slowly reaches over to her nightstand, careful not to knock over the glass of water sitting at the edge, and presses the snooze button. It was not that she was too tired to wake up, or that she had no reason to wake up so early, she repeatedly pressed the snooze button to reflect on yesterday’s joyous event. Debra and her spouse Tim had only just found out  that they would be giving birth to a baby girl. In light of the moment, they both started thinking of names for the child, Stephanie, Jacqueline, Lora, and others ran through their minds, but not one was fitting quite yet. It took them a few weeks to find the perfect name for their child, without second thought when the name Abby came up they both froze and said,”That’s the one”.

Five months went by and they were the most exhilarating, busy and expensive months of their lives. Picking out a crib, buying bottles and toys was a chore and a half, but undoubtedly some of  the most rewarding and meaningful experiences they could hope for. They spent hundreds of dollars buying the cutest pink clothing, the Disney Princess matching furniture set, and anything else they needed to make sure Abby enjoyed her childhood experience.

Abby is born October 27th, 1989 and after having been cleansed, she is dried and dressed and given her first hat! A pink hat.

The next day Debra and Abby were picked up by Tim and brought to their home. Tim carried Abby into the house and gave her a tour. Abby’s eyes were moving a mile a minute taking in all of the new information the house had to offer her. They continued through the kitchen, down the hall way to Abby’s newly furnished and completed room. The light pink wallpaper stamped with ponies made Abby feel right at home, thought Debra and Tim. Abby was exhausted, so the parents of the little girl gave her a kiss, set her in her crib and said goodnight.

5 years later…

“Let’s go Abby, the school bus is not going to wait for you all day.” shouted Debra. Abby hurried to finish brushing her teeth as if she had no time left in the world and rushed down the hallway and down the stairs. She looked so cute in her pink skirt and blouse. Debra walked with Abby down the driveway to the bus, gave Abby an enormous hug and kiss and said goodbye.

Abby’s first day of school was exhilarating, she learned how to do some basic mathematics.

12 years later…

“Abby get up! You’re going to be late for school again, and I am not driving you today I have to leave for work. Get up!” yelled Tim.

Abby rolled over slowly reaching for her alarm clock’s snooze button only to realize the annoying sound echoing through the walls were here fathers. She paused for a moment, and shouted, “I’m up, I’m up!” She stepped out of bed and before she could even stand up to put her bathrobe on the door swung open and her mother was standing at the doorway and began a speech, ” Abby, how many times are we going to have to tell you! You cannot just waste your life in bed!”

“I’m up!” retorted Abby.

“Well, fine, but you do not know how much work me and your father have done to save up for your future, and being late for school is not helping your future! It’s only going to make it worse and more difficult for you. We did all that work for you, so you can have a happy life and not have to worry about anything.” said Debra.

Her mother left the room and followed by moving down the hallway and out the door with Tim, “Don’t be late! Bye!” they shouted.

Something clicked in Abby’s mind after hearing what her mother had said. She felt empty for a moment. When she thought of the ‘future’ her mother and father worked so hard for. “What future…” she thought, “…a future already determined for me? In a world already set forth in front of me, a world where I have no choice in how it runs? This is absurd, I did not choose any of this. Where was I when all of this was set before me?”

She started to think back to her childhood and wondered how things would be different if only she exercised her freedom of choice as a child. But she couldn’t could she? She did not have the power too she thought.

She remembered all of the things her parents bought for her, the pink clothing, the ponies and dolls, “Were all these things given to me to condition the way I think, and the way I am? Why couldn’t I have had a green room, or a cars for toys.”

She stopped and thought for a moment “Wait!, having a green room, or a blue room, and cars for toys instead of dolls, would not have changed anything, except for having been conditioned differently as it would for boys and vice versa.”

She quickly thought, “All these years I have been alive and I have only had this idea of free choice, fine I can now choose what to wear, what to eat, and what to say, but my choices are still only limited to the situation that I am in, and this situation is one that is predetermined for me, in a society that is already built for me to live in.

“I have no freedom.” she said out loud and sat back on her bed and fell asleep.


Abby’s situation might not be exactly the same as yours or mine, but what is true for all of us is that we have no choice in our upbringing! From the moment we are born there are predetermined categories that we fall into. Gender is of the biggest ones, now I am not saying that there should be no gender, but we should look at what follows through with it when babies are born. As we see with Abby, she is a girl so the parents bought, dolls, and ponies, and pink items to satisfy the social category of femininity. What would be so wrong as to not have these predetermined  categories? Could a young girl not play with a Tonka truck? Could a young boy not play with a Barbie set without being ridiculed?

We are conditioned to be a certain way from the moment we are born. We are told to act a certain way, talk a certain way, walk a certain way, and ultimately be a certain way. Where is our freedom then? Some would say that you obtain your freedom once you old enough to take responsibility of it for yourself. Let us assume that the age of ‘responsibility’ comes at sixteen (this age does not represent anything other than an example), so for sixteen years a child is subjugated and conditioned to be a certain way and once he or she hits the age he or she can then alter the way his or her life is. This does not seem fair to us as beings, those sixteen years although far behind us, they are no forgotten, they are what makes you, you today. We should have more say in what we do, how we do it, and when we do it. It might seem like a hard task to accomplish, but it will start with the parents, please do not subject your children to these silly common senses like, girls wear pink and boys wear blue.

Do your best to give them as much freedom of choice as you can! Yes, there are neutral colors that both genders can wear, not only girlie colors and boyish colors, they are simply colors without difference.

Abby’s parents worked so hard for her future. They saved up tons of money to make sure that Abby could go to the best elementary and high school around. Nothing wrong there, it seems. Wait! Except for the education that is being preached at these schools, they are nothing but regimented and dogmatic lessons that offer each student only the same curriculum with some differences between, arts and sciences. Students should be given more choices earlier on instead of waiting until college begins to pick what they will want to do the rest of their lives. Why not offer a seventh grader the choice to be in a pure music program, or to be doused in mathematics classes, etc… We should help students in high school become creative individuals who are willing and responsible enough to decided for their future on their own, instead of indoctrinating them into the system that we were all thrown into.

On another extreme I would wonder why exactly I have to wake up every morning and go to work? Is there no other option for me as a human being? Can I not just be free and sleep in today, without having to pay the consequences my employer would set to me? Of course not, I have to wake up to go to work to make sure that the world keeps spinning. Oh wait, the world would keep spinning if I and every other human being stopped working. Life would continue, only it would continue differently. Could we not just live to survive and forget about all these things we take for granted such as, cars, toys, gadgets, etc… We create these things to enhance our lives and to help us get more time to do things. I find that the effect is the complete reverse, we have all these things to help us go faster yet we feel as if we have less time than we ever did. We drive cars to get to work quicker, yet we spend so much time in traffic, aggravated that your going to be late. Guess what horses never got into traffic jams, they were not confined to the super-duper roadways we’ve built.

Well back to freedom, our lives are filled with these pre determined ways of being and we blindly just follow along like sheep. Then there are the people whom control our world, namely the banks and corporations, forget the government as much as policy and doctrine are not my most favorite things, they at least offer protection and security. The people on the ‘top of the world’ control everything we do for their own benefit, while the masses scurry underneath, agreeing with everything they tell us to do. There is not freedom there.

Freedom is the means to do what you want to do, to achieve your ultimate happiness in life. It is definitely not what is taking place in many parts of the world. We as human beings should just be able to live as people, surviving without fighting, share our resources, share our knowledge of the world and of ourselves, then we will truly understand ourselves, others and our place in the world.

–This topic is nowhere near complete, there is too much to write, and every-time I try to touch on one subject I seem to jump all over the place with it. I am glad at least to put this down on paper, and hopefully whomever reads it will stop to think about it for a second and see that freedom is not something that is given to us, and it is not something that can achieved either, freedom just is and our societies are moving away from it.

Please voice any comments or concerns here–

~ by Peter on November 7, 2009.

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