"What association do you have between the words education and freedom?"
This was a question I was posed with for my “The Development of Children and Adolescents” class at university.
Of course, this question was asked in the context of how to give teachers and students freedom within the education system. But since both of these topics have held much interest in my heart and mind, I've often sought to verbalise why I believe they're both important in a spiritual context for an individual.
As spiritual beings living a human experience, we often come up against many limitations that prevent us from living a free existence.
Some of these limitations are imposed on us based on something trivial or due to unfortunate circumstances. And some of them are by our own making, sprouting from paradigms, disempowering beliefs and lack of exercising our healthy power.
As I've progressed further and further along my journey of growing and expanding as an individual, I have come to understand two things about freedom.
Firstly, many of us - including myself - equate freedom with happiness. Which in my opinion, is a fair association. And secondly, we feel our happiness and freedom are things that we have to work for.
Everyone on this planet battles with some form of limitation and I know that throughout my journey of gaining more personal freedom, I’ve had to deal with many of mine. Psychological limitations that kept me disempowered, dependent and unable to be happy with my existence.
I can say that many of these limitations that once restricted me, are now far behind me, as I have diligently worked to release them.
But how exactly did I release my limitations and gain more freedom? First, by educating myself. And more specifically, educating myself on the topic of ‘Me’.
Of course, newly acquired knowledge wasn’t enough on its own, I also needed to actually take the necessary action to create more freedom for myself. But just as the late (and great) Maya Angelou said, “when we know better, we do better” - and it’s only when we're aware of the limitations we face, are we able to work on releasing them.
As I learned exactly what beliefs, fears, and paradigms were restricting me - I was able to work on releasing them, one at a time. This kind of work was slow and results weren’t necessarily transformative straight away.
But after a couple of years of working through those limiting beliefs, I can confidently say that I am a transformed person. Today exists a much happier and freer version of myself.
Freedom is the coveted human experience that many of us lust over and it’s very easy to believe that we can never attain any amount of freedom. However, while there are some limitations that we can’t do much about, there are many that we can.
Both on a personal level and on a grander scale, education is what will help us overcome the restrictions we face. It’s the first stage of creating any meaningful change for ourselves and for our fellow people.
That’s why it’s regularly said that knowledge is power.
By: Ella Capek
Ella is a British-Israeli in her early 20’s studying to eventually become a music therapist. On the side, she writes on her blog Wide-Eyed Wanderer, where she's been sharing her travel experiences for 3 years. Her hope is to continue doing everything that she loves in the realms of music, writing & travel, while also consuming as much green tea and brownies as possible.