“You’re free, choose, or invent.” – Jean Paul Sartre
Choose and invent are not, however, synonymous. If there are several options you can choose one or another or several. You can even choose not to choose any.
The important thing is that connect or not to something outside of yourself, presented by others or by circumstances.
It’s great to have choices and it really gives us the feeling that we are free.
I think I won’t fail if I say most people are satisfied if they have options.
In my graphic design work I often submit only one proposal to my client. Often this is not the only proposal I made, sometimes I do several, but always present one only. Customers do not like it because they prefer to have at least two. It gives them the feeling that they are in charge that they may choose one and discard the other. If they have only one option they feel that if they approve it, they are being guided by me and that somehow deprives them of liberty.
We are all like this.
If we don’t get alternatives we get nervous.
We need 2 or 3 prices for the same product, and, if necessary, go to three different stores. First day on the job, need to be told what to do and how, step by step, but we want to choose something: or what to do first or where to start, or the speed at which we do, or something else.
This is our illusion of freedom and autonomy.
A cage of invisible bars.
You can work this way, this is normal and “normal” is good.
You can also act on opportunities and overcome them, milking the cow until it dries, take an alternative to its last consequences.
And that is freedom.
You cherish, you choose, act and take it to the limit and beyond.
You are fulfilling your potential, drawning from within yourself everything you need.
You’re gonna make concrete the value that you have by transforming it into action.
You’ll “acomplish” things, you’ll become “real.”
Who does this really is to show that the limits can be stretched, the cage is so big it does not really matter whether it has visible or invisible bars or no bars at all.
So whoever invents alternatives where none exist and new limits for all the challenges is a person who is truly free.
Let’s put a little practice to this theory.
An example: You have a boss that needs boastful claim the power that is humiliating employees. You, for example. He yells at you to do something you would do anyway. You burn the man with your eyes “who does he think he is.” You are placed in front of the options of “doing or not.” The option to “not do” is removed quickly when you think about the morgage for your home. Only remains the option to obay. However you will find a way to perform the task as much as possible to your way, even you know that it might not please. You are limited by your boss’ figure. He is interfering in your performance simply by being present in your mind and in your emotions.
You can however not accept playing this game.
You know what you gotta do and do, surpassing yourself, putting your best talent and effort into every little detail. The boss? Who cares about the boss! He has no power over you while you do 3 times better than expected.
You stretched your limit and the limit of everyone.
Proved many things to yourself and all others, but the main one was that no one is your superior that you are free to do your best.
An little side note, but still related:
One day the Buddha and his disciples were passing through a village and a few peasants began to insult him. He was always smiling and so continued his path as his disciples followed him muttering. After leaving the village one of the disciples asked him, “- Master, how can you continue to smile after you have been insulted with such violence? Did you not hear the insults that people have spoken against you?” – Buddha replied: “- If someone comes with a cake to give you as a gift and you do not take it, to whom does the cake belong?” The disciple replied: “-To the one who brought the cake.” Buddha then concluded: “- If you do not accept in your heart the evil of others, it will stay with who has it and has no power over you.”
There is always a positive road, an exciting alternative.