“Unlike a drop of water which loses its identity when it joins the ocean, man does not lose his being in the society in which he lives. Man’s life is independent. He is born not for the development of the society alone, but for the development of his self.”
– Dr. B.R Ambedkar
On this Independence Day, why don’t we reflect on what Independence actually means to us. We celebrate this day to commemorate our freedom from the clutches of the British Raj & being allowed to make our own decisions around how we’d like to be governed. But still, do we actually feel free?
We no longer are a part of a nation that’s not capable of sustaining its population, neither do we belong to a generation that’s struggling for mere sustenance. This leaves us free to move towards higher pursues in life & what higher pursue is there than the pursuit of freedom.
As I reflect on what independence means to me, one thing I’ve understood is it’s never an absolute. As we progress along the different stages of life, the definition keeps on changing. As a kid, freedom meant a day without my parents. Later, it meant making money, then moving out and so on. The gist is intact, that freedom can never truly be acquired, and it keeps on changing forms.
To the ones stuck in the grinding halt of the modern factory called a corporation, it might seem that freedom is out there, somewhere beyond the four walls. To someone not being able to get a half decent job, it might seem that freedom is somewhere inside those four walls and in the comfort of the mundane. If you are or have been a part of the situations given, maybe what you’re after is not freedom, but the forbidden fruit, the unattainable, the elusive. The moment the forbidden fruit is bit, it ceases to be all that great and then the shift occurs and we move on till it continues to elude us.
Maybe freedom doesn’t even lie outside oneself, maybe what freedom seeks is a taker, someone who can reflect and achieve a state of true Independence, and that I believe is what people have called nirvana. In the end, all I would like to say about independence is-
“Seek and you shall find”.
Happy Independence Day!!