Freedom – for most of us here in the Western world the word may invoke thoughts of the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights, but more importantly the fact that we have so many freedoms for which others in the world are still fighting to obtain. Yet for all of this freedom, somewhere deep inside, most of us may be aware that something is still missing, some sort of freedom or knowledge that exceeds even those outward freedoms that we sometimes take for granted. Most of us are not even consciously aware that we are searching for it, but we may find that there are times when we feel overrun by our own thoughts and feel the need for shutting down all the chatter and listen to the quiet.
Most of us are born into this world crying and only when we are given back to our mother and feel that connection do we quiet down and feel loved, even if we cannot express it. Our souls may retain the knowledge of the inner connection from which we came, but as our minds start to process the physical world around us we are drawn outward and away from any knowledge of that connection, eventually losing awareness of it as we continue to grow and connect with our physical families and the rest of the world. From there our minds tend to direct our journey through life. It is not until we mature and grow older we may find ourselves questioning our purpose in life, beyond mere existence and our interactions with each other. Only a few of us might actually follow that train of thought further by searching, first through the various books and articles on religion and spirituality, and then sometimes traveling to far flung parts of the world that appear to have discovered a path to follow to connect with that indefinable ”something” that we feel is missing from our lives.
The science of the mind, or psychology and psychiatry, tells us that our minds supposedly have levels. When we are awake we are conscious, and can think and reason. When we are asleep we are unconscious to the outward world, but our mind still functions, although is a slightly different way. We sleep and sometimes dream, as our subconscious mind takes over. So, in a way, we are always being affected by our minds whether waking or sleeping. But, what if we had a way of remaining conscious but quieting our minds so that we could continue our search for that last elusive freedom for which we search – the freedom from ego or “self” and the constant directives demands of our minds? If this search is followed to its conclusion, and very few of us will go this far, the answers are there, but they will not be found outside ourselves, but within, in meditation. It sounds so simple but takes perseverance and repetition. For those of you who have read this far and are still searching, would you take the challenge and follow your heart rather than your mind?