Just throwing something out here.....

by Flowerpetal 2 Replies latest jw friends

  • Flowerpetal

    From a book I'm reading by Steve Allen (On the Bible, Religion & Morality):

    In times of war or other national danger, the freedom of the total population is guaranteed by immediate restrictions upon the freedom of those who are drafted for military service. Even in the freest of nations, men in uniform live under the strictest sort of totalitarian --not democratic -- rule, earn small incomes, and in almost all particulars live under precisely that sort of system that free men are supposed to abhor deeply. my comment --->(that's one to really think about)

    One cannot resist the fascinating conclusion that, given an inspiring cause and competent, considerate leadership, men will ususally submit cheerfully to this sort of totalitarian existence. The legions of Ceasar, Napoleon, Hitler, Stalin, Mao Tse-Tung, Peron, Castro, and Saddam Hussein were not all unwillingly recruited.

    Freedom requires of the individual certain things that are not demanded of him when he simply receives orders and responds like an automaton. A free man must constantly make important decisions, some of which can be made only through internal suffering and doubt. This is an obligation to which not all of us are equally receptive. Sometimes, in this sense, freedom is rathere like a maiden caught between two grimly determined suitors. In other words, she is apt to be trampled to death in the fight between those who are sworn to defend her.

    One reason freedom may be difficult to defend is that it is not only an abstraction but a negative one, and not even as recognizable a thing as are the virtues. What has definite existence of the sort that is understandable to even the least enlightened is encroaching legislation or other restrictions upon liberty or the use of private property.

  • larc


    Very interesting ideas. The search for human freedom and the constraints. hmmm... I think many people want freedom of behavior, so that their activities have few restrictions. I think fewer people want mental freedom. Eric Hoffer's book, The True Believer, shows how many people may change beliefs, but often they migrate to another fairly regimented set of beliefs that are determined by a leader of a set of organizational rules. I don't think it is easy a person think for themselves. It takes a lot of energy and psychic pain, at times. Also, it requiers a person to admit that they don't know all the answers and suspend judgement on some issues. Since it is the usual tendency to want to know "the answer", not knowing or knowing with some uncertainty can be an umcomfortable mental state.

    Thank you for the new thread.

  • cellomould

    Hey Flowerpetal, Larc!

    I like this too. I wouldn't call it 'throwing something out there'. That's an important topic. My question is whether it is possible to free humans from indoctrination of all kinds. Is not there an easier way, for example, to train military? Do they need to be given a sort of 'cult identity' in order to be successful? (Or do we have to wait until humans are so enlightened that we no longer need military?)

    And about psychic pain...Larc, have you experienced this? I think I am experiencing some right now, but it is really mostly physically evident to me. It just doesn't seem a coincidence that just after leaving I cannot stay healthy.

    What else can you say about this?


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