4801 Spring Valley, Suite 115
Dallas, Texas 75244
Yesterday some friends came over for a lovely Fourth of July BBQ and pool party. This has become a tradition in our household and we love to celebrate holidays this way. Since I like to bring spiritual awareness into every aspect of my life, as people started to gather, I asked everyone “What are you declaring your “freedom from” on this day?” Everyone made their declaration of independence, affirming their practice of spiritual living, and off the party went.
We can definitely declare our “freedom from” things like old habits, the tyranny of our addictions, and stinkin’ thinkin’. This asserts our independence from the past and our reliance on spiritual living as the framework for our life. And, I wondered, what about the “freedom to”? Am I free to… Are you free to… you fill in the blank. While this could definitely turn into a political discussion or a moral contemplation, I was really thinking more in terms of spiritual living.
How many times do I say ‘I have to”? How many times do you say it? I have to brush my teeth, go to work, finish this project, be nice to my mother, meditate more, fix my life, and get my nail polish changed before someone notices it’s chipping. What if each time we said “I have to” we practiced changing it to “I am free to “or “I get to”? I am free to brush my teeth and have minty clean breath, and I am free not to brush my teeth and end up at the end of a dentist’s drill. Yikes! I get to go to work and bring home a pay check or I get to stay home and start looking for a new job. Hmmmm, maybe that’s something to think about if I really don’t want to go to work today. I am free to be nice to my mother, or not, if I’m learning to set boundaries and tell the truth about the elephant in the room. I get to take care of my nail polish or I can simply ignore other people’s opinions about the fact that it’s chipping and what that says about my mental, emotional, or moral state!
Recognizing that you are free to or not to makes you realize that everything is, in fact, a choice, even if it’s choosing something you don’t necessary love in service to a larger something that you do want to experience. And you discover, that yes, you really are free, to live your life any way you choose. What you get to choose is which consequences you are willing to live with, and which you are not.