Profound freedom is a profound intimacy with life.– Adyashanti, Silent Retreat Vol. 57, Garrison 2017
What is freedom?
At an ordinary and universal human level, it’s the freedom of movement, freedom of access to education, freedom of access to healthcare, freedom of worship and speech, and so on.
At a more psychological level, it’s the freedom from being caught in beliefs, identifications, emotional issues, and trauma. When we are caught in these, they run us. We are caught in their separation consciousness and perceive and act as if the stressful thoughts behind them are true. When we are more free from being caught in these – because our relationship to them has changed and/or they themselves have healed – we have more freedom in how we respond to situations. (It still comes from conditioning but there is room for more flexibility, kindness, and acting from a larger view.)
Adyashanti talks about the freedom to experience our experiences as they are, without being caught in having to change them, avoid them, or transform them.
And there is the freedom that comes from noticing what we are, and from what we are noticing itself as all there is. When we find ourselves as capacity for the world as it appears to us, and as that which all our experiences happen within and as, it’s all revealed as a seamless whole. And in this oneness, there is freedom. It’s freedom since there is no “other” that can impede freedom. All is movements within the one.
How do these freedoms give an intimacy with life?
The first freedom gives us a richer life and a life where we are more free to follow what’s right for us and our heart and inner guidance. The second allows us to respond more intentionally to situations and work with them instead of reacting to them and work against them. The third allows us to be with and find ourselves as whatever our experience is and gives us an intimacy with our experience as it is here and now. And the last one gives us intimacy with the world as it appears to us since it is what we are.
All of these freedoms – and probably many more – are important and valid. They contribute to the richness of life and function at different levels and areas of who and what we are.