FREEDOM IS LIKE A DANCE / Ksenija Mijatović
At the very core of human existence lies the need for freedom. It is a fundamental human value, and that is precisely why all significant thinkers throughout the history of human existence have pondered upon it.
Philosophers, psychologists, artists, scientists, and all those who have contributed to the beauty of this world have considered the feeling of freedom as the highest act of existence and the sole prerequisite for a person to express their full potential. As I write this text, I can feel the excitement deep within myself at the mere mention of freedom.
However, is it truly attainable?
Slavoj Žižek, one of the most significant thinkers of our time, a psychoanalyst and philosopher, stated that freedom lies in the understanding that true freedom does not exist. This understanding leads to the realization that the closest one can come to the feeling of freedom is an inner sense of harmony with oneself, one’s values, and the desired life.
If you think about it, the philosophical aspect of looking at freedom is tied to the unlimited possibility of choice, providing a sense of control to individuals but also automatically involving responsibility. And there comes the duality.
Here is freedom, but what will I do with it, or how will I handle it? As Freud would say.
Freud’s psychoanalytic approach speaks of three internal entities – ego, superego, and id. He believed that freedom lies in balancing these internal forces within a person. Ego, representing reality, must contend with superego, the moral guide, and id, human desires and instinctive urges. The conflict of these forces can create internal struggles but also liberation by answering the most important questions for every individual: WHO AM I? And equally important: WHERE AM I GOING?
Freedom is not just a philosophical abstraction but also a psychological state of mind. Freud’s perspective adds depth, pointing to internal conflicts that shape our perception of freedom.
Today, in the era of accelerated technological progress, freedom has gained a new digital context. Digital freedom, from online privacy to freedom of expression on social media, raises new questions about boundaries and responsibilities.
For me, as a therapist and psychologist, freedom is a dynamic concept that evolves through time, societal changes, and changes within individuals. Therefore, I often describe it metaphorically and offer you my definition of freedom:
Freedom is a dance, and not just any dance but a tango, a Salto mortale between choices and limitations, desires and fears, individuality and societal norms.
So, if you ask me how to live with this realization, I would tell you that all that matters is the present moment. Of course, it’s crucial for our living to look and move forward, but it is equally important that we are moving towards to what we aspire to and being close to our own vision of life.
The closer we are to ourselves and the life we wanted for ourselves, the greater the sense of satisfaction, peace, and the spark of freedom in our souls.
As a woman, I observe and often contemplate freedom. In the 21st century, the position of women is undergoing significant positive changes that shape their relationship with freedom and responsibility. Although there is great progress in the status of women and the fight for gender equality, the question is how women today define the balance between freedom and responsibility.
Does the pressure that women increasingly feel (speaking through the experience of my psychotherapeutic practice) lead to limiting freedom? Certainly, but only in one aspect while enabling it in another. I would allow myself to say that absolute freedom does not exist.
The answer and the story of freedom lie again and exclusively in the PERSONAL narrative and personal vision of each individual’s life.
It’s beautiful when visions of freedom converge, so instead of individual stories, we see united forces. That is the power that leads and brings about change. Freedom is much more than a feeling, more than a value; it is an eternal concept for reflection, questioning, a continuous conquest, but it is also a desire that will never leave humanity.
And in conclusion, have you noticed that the word “freedom” is of the feminine gender?
She began her career in the musical realm.
Today, the music she engages with is the music of the human soul.
As a master psychologist and integrative psychotherapist, she helps people understand themselves, navigate changes in their surroundings, and find their place in their lives and environment. Primarily, she guides them to discover ways to enhance the quality of their lives through personal growth and embrace it wholeheartedly.
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