true freedom

In spite of the feeling of smallness in the vastness and grandeur of the mountain landscape, in spite of the knowledge of human limitations and dependance on the whims of wind and weather, water and grazing-grounds, food and fuel and other material circumstances, I had never felt a sense of greater freedom and independence. I realized more than ever how narrow and circumscribed our so-called life is, how much we pay for the security of a sheltered life by way of freedom and real independence of thought and action. When every detail of our life is planned and regulated, every fraction of time determined beforehand, then the last trace of our boundless and timeless being, in which the freedom of our soul exists, will be suffocated. This freedom does not consist in being able 'to do what we want', it is neither arbitrariness nor waywardness, nor the thirst for adventures, but the capacity to accept the unexpected, the unthought-of situations of life, good as well as bad, with an open mind; it is the capacity to adapt oneself to the infinite variety of conditions without losing confidence in the deeper connections between the inner and the outer world. It is the spontaneous certainty of being neither bound by space nor by time, the ability to experience the fulness of both without clinging to any of their aspects, without trying to take possession of them by way of arbitrary fragmentation. The machine-made time of modern man has not made him the master but the slave of time; the more he tries to 'save' time, the less he possesses it. It is like trying to catch a river in a bucket. It is the flow, the continuity of its movement, that makes the river; and it is the same with time. Only he who accepts it in its fulness, in its eternal and life-giving rhythm, in which its continuity consists, can master it and make it his own. By accepting time in this way, by not-resisting its flow, it loses its power over us and we are carried by it like on the crest of a wave, without being submerged and without losing sight of our essential timelessness.