Leave or Stay

Posted on Jun 18, 2016

There was a book I read once ‘Too good to leave, too bad to stay’, about whether or not to stay in a relationship.

It was simple. If it’s too good to leave, don’t leave; if it’s too bad to stay, don’t stay.

For me, it was too bad to stay, so I left. Someone else might not have agreed with me. There was nothing obviously ‘bad’ about it, it just wasn’t good enough for me. We each have our own standards and ideals and we each get to say whether something falls below a personal acceptable standard. Then we make our choice. Then we live with the consequences of our choice.

I made my choice. I was happy with my choice. I accepted all the consequences of my choice ….. including that my ‘freedom’ came at a significant financial cost.

There is something very attractive about freedom, and it usually comes at a price!

So, what price freedom?

What particular freedom do we most desire? Personal freedom to speak our mind without fear; the freedom to make our own choices; freedom to travel; freedom to learn; freedom to work; freedom to play; freedom to dance and express ourselves; freedom to be ourselves. In the ‘free’ world, how come it seems like we don’t have this? Why do we put the key to our freedom in someone else’s pocket?

And what is the cost of this freedom? ‘With great freedom, comes great responsibility’. We are now responsible for our own lives and choices; we have no one to blame; we are the master of our fate; we are free to determine the course of our lives; our successes and failures are our own; but soon our freedom may threaten the security of another – and result in an attempt to limit our freedom …

Perhaps freedom is an illusion.

Perhaps there is no where to go. We are here, ‘free’ to wander the earth, yet unable to leave except in death; an unlimited mind trapped in a limited body, waiting to be liberated by voice and art; free to speak our mind but afraid to do so; free to act, but afraid to do so; free to leave, but afraid to do so, free to stay but afraid to do so.

Earthlings, trapped by gravity, trapped in space and time, trapped in an identity we designed ourselves, trapped in conversations we inherited, trapped in fears and beliefs and judgements; trapped in routines and habits of our own making; trapped in the embodiment of our genetic code; trapped in family relationships, trapped in jobs and careers, trapped in communities and society, trapped in countries, ideologies and religions. Trapped in the human condition. Trapped here on earth, in life. It’s not personal.

‘The way out of the trap is into the trap’. Go into to life, into the human condition, into the human body, into the human mind; into relationships, into conversations, fully and freely; participate, play, explore, enjoy, converse, dream, plan, live, love, learn … freely … as if freedom were really real, and really free. We have already paid the piper, now we can play the tune.

‘Too good to leave, too bad to stay’.


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