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Saturday, August 27, 2005

Freedom and/or Responsibility?

Freedom Brings Responsibility With It

One hundred years ago Friedrich Nietzsche declared: God is dead, and man is free.

The next sentence he wrote was: Now you can do whatsoever you want to do, there is no responsibility. God is dead, man is free, and there is no responsibility. There he was absolutely wrong.

When there is no God, there is tremendous responsibility on your shoulders; if there is a God, he can share your responsibility, you can throw your responsibility on Him. You can say: It is you who have made the world, it is you who have made me in this way. It is you who is finally, ultimately responsible, not me. How can I be ultimately responsible? I am just a creature and you are the Creator. Why have you put seeds of corruption and sin in me? You are responsible. I am free.

If there is no God, then man is absolutely responsible for his acts, because there is no way he can shift responsibility to anybody else.

When I say to you that you are free, I mean that you are responsible. You cannot transfer responsibility to anybody else. You are alone; whatsoever you do, it is your doing. You cannot say that somebody else forced you to do it, because you are free nobody can force you! Because you are free, it is your decision to do something or not to do something. People go on talking about freedom but what they really want is not freedom exactly; they want irresponsibility. They ask for freedom but deep down, unconsciously, they ask for irresponsibility and license.

Freedom is maturity whereas license is childish.

Freedom is possible only when you are so integrated that you can take the responsibility of being free. The world is not free because people are not mature. Revolutionaries have been doing many things down through the centuries but everything fails. Utopians have been continuously thinking of how to make man free but nobody bothers because man cannot be free unless he is integrated. If you are not aware then the state is needed, the government is needed, the police is needed, the court is needed. Then freedom has to be cut from everywhere. Then freedom exists only in name; in fact it doesn’t exist.

How can freedom exist when governments exist? It is impossible. But what can one do? If governments disappear, there will be anarchy. Freedom will not come in if governments disappear, there will simply be anarchy. It will be a worse state than it is now. It will be sheer madness. The police are needed because you are not alert; otherwise what is the point of having a policeman standing on the crossroads? If people are alert, the policeman can be removed, will have to be removed, because his job becomes unnecessary.

But people are not conscious. So when I say freedom, I mean be responsible. The more responsible you become, the more free you become; or the more free you become, the more responsibility comes on you. Then you have to be very alert to what you are doing, what you are saying. Even about your small unconscious gestures you have to be very alert because there is nobody else to control you, it is only you.

And there you have it. An interesting piece I thought, because it was rather simple and almost child-like in its explanation of how some things work in our lives. Try applying the idea of wanting to be free, truly free, in areas of your life that you've always wished for yourself to be in total control...and see if what you want is to be free or to be without responsibility. How about wanting to lead your own life, even as kids or teenagers who used to rebel against parents and authority figures? Wasn't that the same thing? You must accept the reality of the situation for ignoring it will cause you much pain. And on that note, I wish you guys a good Sunday...because for most of you the weekend has already started (DAMMIT!!!).
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