“I want freedom for the full expression of my personality.” – Mahatma Gandhi
Everybody wants to be free. Freedom is touted as the most basic of human rights. The commonly understood definitions of freedom are “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint”1 or “the power of self-determination attributed to the will; the quality of being independent of fate or necessity.”2 Yet, by the very definitions, none of us are truly free. We mistakenly limit freedom to a very narrow range of experience.
A child’s view of freedom is to be free from the direction of parents, teachers, and other people of authority. Even when we become adults, we often cling to the same narrow definition: freedom from coercion of others. But there is a much greater freedom that most of us have never even considered: freedom to choose how to react to every stimulus.