Freedom Essay: Example
Introduction for Freedom Essay
What is Freedom? This question is asked so often, but the answer is usually ambiguous. Many people care about this issue and are interested in it, but it is hard to give a concrete definition, not everyone can interpret this concept. This question worries me very much, therefore I even created a whole project dedicated to freedom and its various manifestations in our world. So why is it so difficult to give some definite answer to this question? Why are there so many different opinions about this? Yes, because this concept is more complicated than it seems at first glance.
You know, every person has such a topic, which is especially difficult. And the more you dig, the more difficult it is, as if a shovel is stuck in a damp ground. You press on it, it rests on stones, and it does not go and that’s it! Did it happen to you? For me, such a topic is freedom. What is freedom for man? What is freedom for you? How to become free? How does a free man feel? What will I be when I become free? These and many questions I began to ask myself a very long time ago and could not find answers to them.
And, I dare say, most of your opinions on that issue are partly true, because freedom is much more than one particular subjective opinion. I pondered over this question for a long time, I digested many versions, opinions, analyzed various variants and now, I think, now I can give a concrete definition and an answer to the question – what is freedom. And you are free to either agree or disagree with me.
So, first, let’s take and analyze a frankly misunderstanding of the concept of freedom. A false understanding of this concept is dictated to us by a liberal doctrine. Freedom is the ability to do “whatever you want”, the ability to have a choice – says liberalism. But this is not true!
If I can afford to do what I want, then I’m free, says the liberal paradigm. Such an interpretation is entirely aimed at ensuring that its carrier behaves as a consumer, and ultimately consumes various goods and services of certain capitalists. This is the usual marketing course of modern merchants, in order to get as much money from the person (consumer) as possible, as much profit as possible (“surplus value” according to Marx). With this “freedom” a person, considering himself truly free and holy in believing this, becomes a very good consumer, creates a great demand and stimulates economic growth, in which the capitalist, i.e. the holder of capital, receives the maximum profit from the sale of such goods and services to such a consumer. I personally see nothing bad in getting profits, it gets our economy stronger, which is good for our country and society. But does it really give a person real freedom? I don’t think so.
Why is this concept misleading?
At first glance it seems that if I can do what I want, then I’m free. This interpretation motivates a person to act, i.e. you must want. You will be free in that case, if you act, do something, what you want. And if you do not do anything, it turns out that you are not free at the moment. So, in order to remain free, you must constantly want something and get it. But if you have a need for something, then you depend on it. Then such an interpretation does not at all make a person free; on the contrary, it makes him dependent; limits this freedom. A dependent person can not be free, can he?
Let’s think about this on the example of a drug user. I think no one will doubt that such a person is addicted. And he depends on the psychoactive substance, i.e. a drug. Since he is dependent on this, his body requires this substance. So, when you are injecting a new dose, does the person do what he wants? He really wants to take and use this substance. Similarly, an alcoholic, waking up in the morning, is looking for a new way to get money for an alcoholic drink. They are dependent – therefore unfree. Stupefying substances suppress the will of these people, and most of their actions are carried out for the sake of this substance, i.e. the drug becomes the master of these people. So this definition is wrong and they can not designate the term freedom.
Then what is freedom?
Erich Fromm argued that freedom is the goal of human development. In the biblical sense, freedom and independence are the goals of human development; the appointment of human deeds is a constant process of self-liberation from the bonds that bind man to the past, to nature, to the clan and to idols. According to the Wikipedia definition, freedom is the state of the subject in which it is the determining cause of its actions, that is, they are not directly conditioned by other factors, including natural, social, interpersonal, communicative and individual-generic factors.
First of all I want to say that freedom is liberation from any dependencies, from all that binds a person and suppresses his will. Such a man is free only when he is able to free himself from any dependence, habit, from any vices, passions. The ability to do “whatever you want” does not make you free, but a free person makes a release from these desires themselves.
In my understanding, freedom is presented as an absolute, as a disembodied philosophical structure, which includes various other freedoms. Great Freedom, as an absolute, includes small freedoms. Freedom from one, from another, from the third, from the fifth and the tenth – so the collective image is formed. Absolute freedom or Greater Freedom is an ideal unattainable for man, to which one should strive if one wishes to be free, but it is impossible to reach it (and it is not necessary). I see it as a scale or percentage, where 100% is absolute freedom, anything less than 100 is the way to achieve this Great Freedom through the gradual acquisition of small freedoms.
Once again imagine the same drug addict and compare it with a drug-independent person, i.e. those who do not use drugs. It turns out that an independent, for some percentage of the interest (say, 30%), is freer than the drug addict. This means that a person who does not have this dependence is a little freer than the other. It means that everyone is free and not at the same time. It is on some sort of division, on this scale, on some percentage. Saying that we are completely free, we are disingenuous, since we can be free at a given moment of time from something, as a rule, from various cases, cares, but for some fraction of a percent we still remain dependent people. In order to become more free, you need to try to get rid of habits, needs, dependencies.
What kind of dependencies are there?
There are dependencies, which are natural, such as eating, sleeping, etc. and superfluous dependencies. For example, the smoking, because it is not natural for a human. Or the habit of heating water in an electric kettle (so quickly, I know) instead of prolonged heating on the stove or fire. Such small addictions are actually darkness. Everyone, having delved into himself, will be able to discover so many of them. At first glance, they seem ridiculous, because that’s the way it is. Well, there – to heat the water with an electric kettle, well, stupidity! That’s right, stupidity, but this habit arose at a time when electric kettles began to appear in stores that improve the life of a civilized person. So now, boiling water in the electric kettle, we have to buy it, as well as use electricity, which is non-chargeable (kettles consume electricity up to 1-2 kW). The kettle broke, burnt TEN – go and buy a new one, because you’re used to it and can not do it any other way. Stupidity, but such small nonsense and trifles accumulate our lack of freedom, which sometimes turns out to be even more addictive than smoking.
Many of you will not like this definition. You say, it turns out that to be free, you need not to want anything. And why then you live? What is the purpose? The question is good and correct. Why do we need this freedom at all? And if I use my interpretation, it will be more accurate to say, why do we need this Absolute Freedom? Boundless and comprehensive. Of course, if we want unlimited and maximum possible freedom, we will strive to free ourselves from as many addictions as possible, but this does not always seem to be the best option for building our own lives. At some point, a thought arises that stops and does not try to go beyond that scale to the highest division. Sometimes you should leave yourself some dependencies, not to be killed by them, but to work on another.
There is one thing I want to say at the end of this essay. Your freedom end there, where the freedom of other person starts. Do not forget that a human being a social creature. To live in a society, we need to respect and appreciate each other.