How I Understand Freedom
What is freedom? If you ask one hundred people this question, you’ll receive one hundred different answers, because every person understands this phenomenon in his or her own way. I wonder whether this notion can be accurately defined and it seems to me that the answer is no.
Some people consider freedom to be a synonym of democracy. Others believe that it is an opportunity to act freely and embody ideas. There are also those who are sure that it is a possibility to do what they want regardless of the impact their actions will have on other people. A prisoner thinks that freedom is a life out of prison, where you decide everything on your own. For me, freedom is an absence of pressure and enforcement from other people. As you see, it is a very wide notion, which every person understands differently and there can hardly be one common opinion.
I’m definitely sure that everybody knows this statement: “My freedom ends where the freedom of another person starts”. Within the society the area of freedom available to each of the individuals is restricted. A person is free to do what laws and social customs do not forbid. Still, what distinguishes a free society from other societies is the extent of the restrictions put on freedom. We can hardly say that all the societies are free in the same way.
Personally I believe that we, as human beings, are social creatures and we really need to live in the society that is restricted. Can you imagine one where all the people do what they want to? I think that it would turn into chaos. That’s why I stick to the opinion that people should obey the rules of the society they live in and respect the rights of other people.
As for me, I can hardly say that I am a free person, because I observe the rules and traditions of the society. Sometimes I’m not free to act as I want, because I know that it can bring harm to people whom I love and respect. I’m not free to leave the country I live in, because in here there are too many things, which I cannot leave and too many people, whom I love. But from time to time I feel completely free: for instance, when at dawn I ride a horse in a field and enjoy a new day be born.
To my mind…