"You dummy !!!"
"you heretic !!!"
"You don't know what your saying !!!"
"Why don't you just work with the institution."
"Can't you just go with the majority for once?"
These words are usually heard by an individual within a community or group when that individual has chosen to think outside the regular norms imposed by the said community or group.These individuals sometimes are called heretics,prophets,reformers,and the outspoken.I count myself amongst these individuals even though my role at times works within the parameters of the so-called names usually contributed to such I prefer the term Freethinker.
A Freethinker is defined by the Merriam-Webster online dictionary as a person who forms his or her own opinions about important subjects such as religion or politics instead of accepting of what other people say.Our society today seems to be missing many freethinkers.I cannot tell you of how many people I have heard say things such as:
"My minister said this so it must be true"
"You know that person they do this so we can trust them"
"I believe this and I stake my life on it because this person endorses this view"
How sad I find it for these kind of people who do not choose to form their own opinions surrendering even their will over to others at times only for some kind of social gain.I do not count myself amongst such because early on in my life I was exposed to these words by Jesus :
“Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.'
Ask,Seek,and knock this does not seem like an encouragement to accept things just at their face value.At least in my reading of this it encouraged me to always seek outside of the box and notice myself within the box might itself might be suffocating those within it.Jesus went on further to say:
"Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for bread, will give a stone? Or if the child asks for a fish, will give a snake?"
It amazes he even says that if the box you are offering harms an individual nor sustains you then why offer it?The freethinking individual is childlike why nobody around them chooses to question the bread that ends up being stone that the people receive.The Freethinker chooses to question many stop asking why after their childhood.In my own view those who have stopped asking why should begin again.The Freethinker chooses not to be the flake in the room while everyone around them chooses to be pliable.
The Freethinker does not only choose to question authority of the norm but they also innovate the norm making it something even more timeless.Something those of us who think freely normally get accused of is wanting to reinvent the wheel.I disagree let me illustrate :
Humanity used to have wheels like this :
Now we have wheels like this :
The wheel did not get reinvented over time it was made even better.I'm pretty sure the person who re-designed the wheel did not neglect the wheel of the past. So the freethinker does not reinvent the wheel but sees the wheel or the tradition they are apart of as a guide to what it can become.Freethinkers love their but also realize that the tradition there in is not in a state of eternal complacency but in a place of eternal progression.
The Freethinker I believe also might be in a state that other human beings might not be.That state being there best self.While others around may seem to just be following the "party line" the freethinker chooses something wholly different in their own life.an example of this would be martin Luther King,Jr while some within the African-American community like Malcolm X where calling for violent actions to bring about equality he chose to live a life of non-violence.Another example would be Lucretia Mott the great Quaker Feminist during first wave feminism.When other women wanted to leave men out Mott chose to preach about an egalitarian society where all would have an equal place at the table of humanity.I wonder how many of you who read this are sacrificing your best selves in order to impress?think on these greats and don't follow the "party line".
Queries to Ponder:
What radical ideas do you have?have you spoken about them?or put them into the action if they are within reason?
Do you think you are being your best self?or do you think you are allowing others to tell you who or what you should be?
Can you stand alone in your own convictions if others cannot stand with you?
"My Thoughts are as free as wind over an ocean,no one can see their form or motion.No hunter can find them ,no trap ever bind them:my lips may be still,but I think what I will.
A glimmering fire that the darkness will brighten;my soaring desire all troubles can lighten.Though prison enfold me,it's walls cannot hold me:No captive I'll be,for my spirit is free."-Di Gedanken Sind Frei,German folk song sung during WWII by those in Germany who resisted Nazi control.