What does it mean to be independent and what is the value of dependence? Independence gives the ability to make certain choices. It means one is fee from the outside control, not depending on another’s authority, livelihood, or support. To what extent though? What about being independent from certain habits and the influence of your mind – particularly when it no longer serves you well? Independence is also comparative; it depends what we are comparing our current state of being to? I’ve been thinking about this a lot and I’m not sure there is a state of being totally independent. It would imply that we live in isolation from everything and everyone else– no ecosystem, no food, no sleep, no air. It means we no longer exist.
Every organism in nature depends on few other organisms and their ecosystem to survive and thrive. Our bodies depend on the food provided by nature. The food we eat is brought to our plates, thanks to the effort of multiple processes and hands. We depend on the air that We breath, the oxygen generated by trees and marine plants in the ocean. We need clean drinking water to survive, and a peace of mind to sharpen our senses, so we can properly function in our daily lives. If it wasn’t for millions of tinny organisms living in our bodies, depending on each other and our composed mind We would not be alive.
The other day I wrote something that struck a chord with me. It was about my father living his freedom out of repression, not from a blank page. As one would if their childhood was relatively perfect. I realized I have lived my independence out of rejection from being dependent – not from a blank page. Instead of learning the lesson of being humble, willing to ask for help, not always saying NO for an answer – I created a barrier that stopped me from the flow of giving and receiving.
When you depend on somebody in your life, when your dependence is reciprocated, you are also giving each other the opportunity to be dependable, so you can deepen your trust and improve the quality of your relationship.
On the other hand, what happens when one becomes obsessed with the badge of independence – is there something you are trying to prove to others in your life and if so – what is it and why? What is your opportunity cost and what do you gain if you continue this game?
I thought I gained a sense of autonomy’. But that’s just a feeling – and it does not mean I am actually free. It’s a mind-made concept that can easily be challenged and taken away from me. What am I left with when that feeling is gone? ‘I’m left feeling insecure.’ Your observation is spot on! This too is another mind concept.
OK, lets dive deeper. Why am I feeling insecure, if I know that I am imperfectly perfect expression of the Self? A decimal part of the whole, of creator itself. How can I still feel insecure if what I just said is my truth? Am I perhaps deceiving myself and not being fully authentic?
What’s true for me? Can anything that matters ever be taken away from me? Valuable objects, beliefs, memories, or people we hold precious to our heart? Of course, it pains when they are gone – they have provided us with the experience of joy and happiness, sometimes the experience brings tears and anger – it’s the whole 9 yards. Throughout life, we developed many relationships, hopefully beautifully ones, based on mutually reciprocating dependence, love, and trust. Remember, no experience can ever be taken away from you – but the object of experience can. Eventually every experience in life also comes to an end, but the source of the one who is experiencing all this can never be taken away. That which can never end, simply returns back to the source, until it is needed again. As many times as necessary until you finally realize you have always been here. It was all just a dream of the dreamer who dreams it all. Until the moment you wake up and see it for what it is – a dream and you are the creator.
How about you? Here and now. What is really going on when you think about your dependence vs independence?
Try to allow yourself to trust, to be vulnerable by reminding yourself how dependent you are in the most elegant, congenial way. By venturing out into the unknown, by being ok with being dependent. Start by trusting life, the life that knows so much more than your individual personality can ever apprehend.
Being humble, being grateful for being alive, here and now, for having been gifted this unique opportunity to play with your beloved ones, to express yourself, to learn how to flow like a river. To know that You are held by Earth’s gravity, no matter what.
To be able to step outside your comfort zone that limits your full potential. Inching out, bit by bit, until you leave what serves you no more behind. Self-imposed limitations, ignorance, criticism, arrogance, resentments, sadness, fear of the unknown.
Until you finally get a sense of real freedom, realizing that all this time You were being held and supported by so many caring hands, and loving hearts. Those that surround you those that came before you, those that are not even yet born.
Ask yourself a question: ‘Why have I developed the following attitude and the stat of mind “I must prove to myself and the whole world that I can be fully independent?”
One of the reasons is often a disconnect. Just like a temporary power cut, a tripping fuse box, that’s all. Go to the basement and find out what’s tripping your fuse box. Remove the faulty appliances that have been causing the issues or overburdening the system. Go back to the fuse, find the off button, flick on the switch, and carry on.
In peace, with joy, and sweet harmony! And if you find yourself waving the freedom flag again, which is likely to happen, just remind yourself to go back to square one.
I am held by the gravity on Earth, no matter what. Mother Nature provides enough for all of her children’s needs, I am her kin. I am a part of the infinite whole. No one can take what really matters away. I am being held and supported by many caring hands and loving hearts. Those that surround me, those that came before me, those that are not yet even born. I am supported by life itself.
You may ask: ‘Why all this seeking? What awaits at the end of the tunnel?’ Simply, all this happens due to a gravitational pull to the place of my inner peace and harmony. Space with less clutter, less friction in my mind. By going back to a certain level of innocence that makes my life calm by removing the struggles from within and conflicts that manifest on the outside.
Days become brighter, much lighter, more joyful – like the birds’ song. Remember, this state of being is not exclusive; it’s not something attainable by the saints and yogis only; we all carry the same seed – the potential within. It just needs some attention, nurturing, and TLC. We can all grow into it, just like the beautiful, freedom living & life giving, interconnected, and interdependent trees.
It’s ok to say yes, to be held and to hold, to be part of the flow, to trust. When you start changing your attitudes based on these few basic life principles, your insecurity loses its grip. You start being at peace with yourself, at peace with life – no matter who with, when, or where ever you are. This is what true independence is all about. It happens every moment of every day, not only on Independence Day.