I’ve been contemplating our recent holiday, 4th of July Independence Day and the history behind it. Undoubtedly it has been a big holiday for the United States. So, what exactly did we become independent from? Apparently the 13 colonies back in 1776 were not pleased with the new system which required them to pay taxes on imports of paper, paint, lead, glass and tea. Ah yes, the popular Boston Tea Party! From what I can gather our independence was all about freedom from taxation, taxation without representation and freedom from governmental control. As such in 1776 the 13 colonies declared their independence from the British government, which ultimately lead to the establishment of the United States.
In my contemplation I asked myself just how much of that freedom do we still own today while celebrating our independence? When looking at what we are being taxed on today, the more appropriate question is “what are we not being taxed on today?” I wonder just how many people feel properly represented by their government these days? Just recently I was taken aback noticing how many taxes I was paying on a basic commodity such as food. I recall a time when that wasn’t the case. I thought to myself, I don’t remember voting for that. What happened? Obviously somebody had thought it was a good idea. What’s happening to our freedom amidst all the laws, regulations and taxation we keep putting into effect? Consider the possibility that every time we vote for a new law we give up just a little bit more of our freedom. It doesn’t matter who voted for it. It affects us all!
Notice for a moment how laws are being put into effect in an attempt to control someone’s behavior. Be it a leash law for dogs or mandating the purchase of medical insurance. Good, bad or ugly ultimately it forces someone’s behavior. No matter whether we agree with it or not, the irony is that we don’t get more freedom by exerting control, we just get more control. In the end, we all end up with less choices and more restrictions.
I hate to bring up the example of mandated medical insurance which has been such controversial subject amongst many. I recently had a conversation with someone about the issue. They were convinced that some folks who don’t purchase medical insurance go to the emergency room for free and thus drive the cost of health care up for everyone. So, out of fear of rising costs and to control those folk’s behavior that person was for mandating medical insurance. But consider for a moment that acting from fear just creates more of that which we are afraid. And consider for a moment that exerting control on someone else only creates more control for ourselves. It is based on the principle that like energy attracts like energy.
Now consider for a moment the possibility that the solution isn’t in everyone having medical insurance. What if the solution lies in everyone using more alternative health care methods and eating healthier foods without preservatives which ultimately would render us more healthy, not needing medical insurance. However, now because we have exerted control over all those folks who don’t buy medical insurance, we in fact have put up a road block for ourselves in creating naturally something new and different which ultimately would benefit us all in ways our minds can’t conceive of yet. Isn’t it ultimately going to be more costly for us to pay for two systems? The one system we are moving out of, which isn’t working for us any longer but is covered by medical insurance and the new system which is not covered by medical insurance and which we are more and more gravitating toward? So much for keeping down the costs. In my experience control strangles life and the natural flow. …and when we act from fear we just create more of that which we don’t want.
So, where did our precious freedom go? Well, it seems we’ve been giving it away – little by little. I see more and more people unhappy with life and our government. However, being that the British are out of the picture, whom do we declare our independence from today? Our government? Suppose we got rid of our government,what’s to prevent us from creating another just like it? We have done exactly that since the declaration of our independence from Britain in 1776? We have created the government we have today.
Well, I venture to say that if we want different results we must declare our independence from the very energies we used to create with that which we have today; energies such as fear, force and control. When was the last time you, yes you, acted from fear? When was the last time you attempted to force or control someone’s behavior? …punished or threatened your child to get them to do what you wanted? …or voted for a law forcing someone’s behavior you didn’t like?
Oh, I do believe we can change the world. But the only way we’ll change our world is by changing ourselves from within!