What is it to be free? We invade foreign nations under the banner of “freedom.” Mel Gibson shouts the word, heartrendingly, as his character’s flesh is being torn asunder in Braveheart. People kill and die for the idea of it. But what, really do we mean when we say “freedom?” Do we mean the freedom to rape and pillage? Do we mean the freedom to buy all the consumer products we desire? Do we mean freedom from oppression, freedom from definition, freedom from poverty?
We are chained to our physical bodies, we are determined by our particular circumstance of placement by birth, nation, and society, we are locked into our own selves, as all others are distinguished and separate and locked into their own individual selves. Is escaping such confinements even possible, and does the escape thereof constitute complete and total freedom?
We talk of the United States as a free nation. Free from what? The rule of the British? I do not feel free. I have to work 5 days a week to feed myself and put a roof over my head. I have to wear clothes. I have to go pee frequently, and poo at least once a day. I have to speak in an intelligible language to be understood. I have to drive on the right side of the road. I have to watch my language around children and fart quietly in public spaces and click that “I have read and agree to all terms of service” whenever I install a new software program. I DON’T FEEL FREE, goddammit!
Really, I have to say that it appears there is no such thing as complete and total freedom, unless you are nonexistent, and thus bound by nothing.