freedom the quality or state of being free, such as: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action. liberation from slavery or from the power of another.
Something is "free" if it can change easily and is not constrained in its present state. In philosophy and religion, it is associated with having free will and being without undue or unjust constraints, or enslavement, and is an idea closely tied with the concept of liberty. A person has the freedom to do things that will not, in theory or in practice, be prevented by other forces.
To move with breath is liberating, because when we fall into the rhythm of breath, both imaginary and energetic shackles break free. We permit our bodies to move beyond misplaced limitations, into the sense of self whilst simultaneously feeling a sense of selflessness and unity.
Often times we suppose that we can only move a certain way, but if we explore and allow the mind to loosen our fixed ideas of what should or could be, we discover a whole new range of motion and movement.
Letting the rigidity of the mind become malleable, permits the liquid body to speak its unique story. Not the stories that were placed there by our teachers, culture, caregivers, society, education or by laws and regulations. Instead, we permit the authentic stories of self to unravel.
People crave freedom, yet oftentimes we are the ones standing in our own way. We find it awkward to move in the ways our body desires, to speak our truth and to be seen. Especially in modern times, so much of how we perceive we should be is dictated by a general consensus (again (as always) by large corporations selling adverts and undertones of what life must be like to be deemed successful, relevant or right).
Most often the stories and labels we attach to self are illusions; forms of armour or walls preventing ourselves and others access to the more vulnerable parts.
Freedom is the process of letting the inner and outer boundaries and restrictions fall away. A shedding of artificial skin, to allow the untamed to breathe and invite a sense of freedom.
For us, liberation is intertwined in the state of flow; those moments of such complete joy and full absorption, that you lose all sense of time. Creativity brings such sense of flow and freedom; writing, drawing, painting, movement, music, nature and so on.
Freedom and flow intertwine to concoct momentum and pause. Moments and motion that seem to last forever are sweet nectar for the soul.
The effects of the past year will take a long recovery time and the adjustment toward normality may be especially difficult for some. We’re trying to navigate our personal sense of loss and isolation, whilst also dealing with the fallout of local, national and international impact.
Simple acts of socialising, mask-free interaction and increased communication can seem awkward, exhausting and raw after such long stints of forbidden embraces, half covered faces, repressed emotions and increased fear.
However, sometimes you need a sense of restriction in order to find liberation in the less obvious places.
Maybe that will be the reality this year. As we begin to unlock, decompress and take tentative steps back into the world, reconnecting and re-embracing, hopefully we’ll appreciate our freedom more than ever before.
As the external restrictions soften, we can decide how little or much we interact as we did before. Tentative steps will always be our personal preference, leaving a lot of time to download and process the effects between so we know if we’ve gone too far too soon.
But many boundaries are also placed internally.
Many of us place restrictions on ourselves, believing that we are incapable of certain things, or not worthy. This crosses over into how we move physically through life. Ask anyone about their diet and they’ll give you a list of the foods they restrict, ask how people are getting on and they’ll often tell you the things they were incapable of; we are defined by our restrictions.
People love their holiday times because they have a sense of complete freedom. With no set commitments, an allowance to eat, drink, be, and explore however and whenever they want, people feel amazing, free and joyful.
Picket fences drop and freedom is embraced.
If last year taught us anything, it’s that our ideas of freedom are just as illusory as many human concepts.
Whilst we were told not to travel, trips and trainings were cancelled, we wandered the local terrain and found freedom in allowing our days to become unstructured. We practiced conscious movement whenever we felt the need, we returned to more intuitive eating; if we were hungry at 11am, we’d have an early lunch, no problem! These small acts of freedom felt like a rebellion against all the internal and external restrictions.
When your diary isn’t overflowing with appointments, time expands, minutes into hours and there is such beauty and liberation there.
Our movement practices and offerings veered off the well-known terrains into new and weirder motions. Less external aesthetics and more internal. Less is more. Less thought, more felt.
And that kind of encapsulates what freedom means to us; it allows more intuition. Freedom is an inside job.
Freedom is no longer about going to far-flung places, or achieving a new spandangled programme toward health and happiness. It’s about the smaller gestures. Freedom, to us, is about allowing the self just to be.
We we were born free of these shackles. We can unlearn our self-imposed restrictions and return to the simple state of freedom.
Of course, there will be moments when life can seem heavy, but that’s more than okay; it’s part of the process and only to be expected. How ab