Freedom and The Seven Deadly Sins

If you knew you had half an hour left to live, how would you live it? Would you obey a humiliating command and run naked to your death, as the Nazis commanded their victims do?

Let’s get serious for a moment. Think about yourself. Your past. Your family. The choices you’ve made, your fate, your circumstances, the people you’ve come to know: Everything encapsulated in the person that you are today. Then, imagine, it’s war. A group of people escort you to your grave with guns pointing to your head. These are the last moments of your life.

How would you act?

Would you have the courage to say no, stop, look around, forgive, even? Would you risk dying sooner, so you can walk it your own way, because it’s your life, because in your heart you know that your conscience is truly free?

Most of us are mentally enslaved. We’ve been taught not to question, to learn what’s taught, to do what’s expected, to follow the herd because the majority is always right.

‘So, I run because they tell me to.
I run because everyone else is.
I’m scared of repercussions if I don’t obey’

The Nazis with guns, they too were enslaved. They’d forgotten they were free. Even if it meant death, they could have chosen to obey their own conscience. But no.

‘I kill because they tell me to.
I kill because everyone else is.
I’m scared of repercussions if I don’t obey’

Freedom takes courage.

My dad gave a lecture one time, the topic was genocide. ‘Would you do it?’, he asked. ‘Can you?’
A few students sheepishly raised their hands ‘yes’. Most shook their heads ‘no.’
When asked ‘why not?’ a student answered, ‘because I’m not that kind of a person’.

‘What if’, my dad asked. ‘What if you were given the power to do so. What if your friends admired you for it. What if your nation encouraged it? What if your family were compensated for it? Would you then, not commit mass murder?’ The classroom was silent.

‘Don’t forget your freedom’ he said. ‘Everybody has the capacity to commit evil, but don’t forget, you have a choice. Know your vices. Don’t be a slave. You have to take a leap and claim freedom for yourself, in every situation, in face of all challenges.’

“The cost of liberty is eternal vigilance” (Jefferson)

What I see at the heart of the Libertarian movement, is a quickening of the freedom inherent in every individual. In this sense, I see it is a spiritual battle.

What are we fighting against, exactly?

Seven Deadly Sins:

Sloth —> Let them (the state) take care of it
Envy —> It’s not fair, our outcomes should be equal
Gluttony –> I want more, more more!
Covetousness—> Let’s take what’s not ours
Lust —> Forgetting boundaries of private property
Anger —> Why don’t people see my view?
Pride —> I know best

It’s understood that with freedom, comes responsibility.

This is an ancient battle: Humanity has always fought against these sins. Yet, this time is different because of the sheer scale of things: We are the most populated, most networked, interdependent, international, militarised, and powerful (nuclear energy being the most powerful) population the world has ever seen. Are we not fighting a Leviathan of the greatest magnitude? Everywhere there’s chaos, anger, confusion, and still we fight the same battle! This message of freedom is paramount now, more than ever. It’s time to wake up, learn our lesson, evolve. Only we can save ourselves.

  4 comments for “Freedom and The Seven Deadly Sins

  1. Mar 17, 2014 at 11:18 am

    Good post.

  2. Mar 17, 2014 at 8:06 pm

    I totally agree with you on the “spiritual” thing, Ayumi. But I’d question two or three of your sins.

    There’s nothing inherently wrong with gluttony if the “more” doesn’t belong to anyone else. A better – and catchier – definition would be “I want more, more, more of what’s yours, yours, yours!”

    Re: the definition of anger, what’s wrong with disagreeing with someone?

    As for pride, that’s a terribly problematic definition, dude. If it means “I know best what to do with my property”, then that’s no “sin”, although the “my property” renders it redundant. If it means “I know best what to do with your property, so you must do as I say”, then that’s a “sin”, yes, although it’s got nothing to do with “knowing best”.

    • Ayumi
      Mar 27, 2014 at 12:33 am

      Hi Paul and Rocco Bogpaper (too good a ring not to say your whole name). Sorry for being MIA, hectic life, sporadic internet!!

      So so, in response to your comment Rocco, if you’re talking strictly in a socio-political sense, I agree, but I meant to put out a moral question, not about a relationship between people, or society, but about the relationship between oneself and god (or whatever you wanna call it).

      As for gluttony, sure there’s nothing wrong with taking more of what’s yours, but it’s nature’s law that overdoing anything can be unhealthy – have you heard of this gazillionaire who did everything he could think of that money could buy, – naked ladies standing on the steps of his home so he could grab onto their boobs every time he walked up or down it! – and he eventually died of boredom!

      Anger and pride – my take on it was that anger and pride prevents you from being open minded, essentially robbing yourself from being all that you can be. Also, when you’re angry and or proud, it prevents others from trying to understand your view.

      • Mar 27, 2014 at 12:55 am

        Ok Ayumi, that’s fair enough.

        But are you sure that thing about boobs is true? Sounds a bit dodgy to me.

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