Freedom is Illusion


What is freedom?

This word gets thrown around a lot,

Is freedom simply the ability to choose?

Is it the ability to choose among some things, or many things?

Do we have a choice in the options we are choosing from?

The word freedom is a grand illusion

Here Friend, take this one option.

That’s not free.

Here Friend, choose between these two options.

Ah, a little more freedom.

But still, you want more.

Here Friend, choose between these 100 options.

Surely, this feels like freedom.

100 options, 1 million options.

You can spend your life evaluating the options you are being presented.

But, what of the options you are not being presented?

Do you realize that there are options that you do not know about?

Does knowing they exist change how free you feel?

I feel the task of philosophy is identifying these possibilities, the possibilities inaccessible to our conscious awareness, the possibilities that exist to empower us.

Capitalism, or whatever our consumer culture is today, gives us a lot of what we want but don’t need, and tells us that we’re selfish and bad people for not being grateful for what choices we’ve been given

We’re all in the arena, playing some game, following some rules.

Like little mice scurrying for their breadcrumb or cheese morsel.

I laugh at sub-cultures rebelling against mainstream culture.

It’s still just a parody of the larger theatrics they rebel against. Just a different flavor. Though, it could be.

The point is,

Confidence is critical.

Self doubt is repressive.

I feel like our society, the social system as it’s currently operating, as I and many others are currently experiencing it, is broken.

It is fundamentally broken.

I just cannot for the life of me figure out why.

There are several perverse indicators of this brokenness: gross debt, gross material consumption, gross poor health outcomes, gross criminal justice and gross incarceration, gross poor wage growth, gross inequality, gross mental illness/suicide/depression/drug use, gross loneliness, gross pharmaceutical drug use, gross police force.

These are issues that characterize the state of our society at large.

But they also impact each individuals experience.

Maybe some of these more than others.

Or maybe all these things are par for the course in life.

After all, we could be living in 15th century feudal society, with no potable water, where 90% of my income goes toward eating bread, where hygiene doesn’t exist, where a functional class caste system dictates access to any mobility or professional flexibility, where 85% of the population toils in fields, and lives stone homes with thatched roofs with no air conditioning, with child mortality over 50%.

I suppose it could be worse.

And I’m just bein a bitch.
Everything is relative
What’s life look like in the end?
What’s the end game?
What is the utopian society?
Totally Automated?
Brains in vats?
Simulations of fantasies for all?

I feel that every time we gain one thing, we give up another.

So we are not moving forward toward better necessarily, we are just changing into something different

There is a natural tendency to think things are better, getting better.

I often think about technology’s impact on population growth.

Let’s say the population is 1 billion. Say we use poverty as a measure of well being. Poverty is at 90%.

900 million people suffer to survive daily.

Technological innovations reduce poverty but increase population.

We now have 10 billion people. Poverty is at 20%.

2 billion people are suffering to survive daily.

We have more than doubled the suffering in the world.
The question is, can we ever eliminate suffering?

And say we do reduce human poverty to a crazy ratio, thanks to automation and AI and robotics.

What of the environment?
I feel like that’s literally the most impossible goal tho lol

Like, impossibly out of reach.

Paradoxically so.

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