Tonight, Jews around the world are honouring the first night of Passover, a festival celebrating Moses freeing the Israelites from Egypt.
Judaism is the oldest Abrahamic faith, and a theme common to most sects of Abrahamism is that free will can have consequences. This is illustrated best with Genesis and the forbidden fruit of Eden. For acting on their inclination and eating the fruit, Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden. The opinions on freedom amongst followers of these sects therefore range from a “negative freedom” to a belief in total and utter submission to God. Negative freedom appears to be the most common view, a free will existing in obedience of holy laws.
The west today is largely secular, and negative freedom has been replaced with total freedom. The rules of religion have been cast off even amongst many laity of the Abrahamic faiths. It is common to see a Jew eating leaven during Passover as well as pole dancers for Jesus. Are these people sinners? Yes, according to many religious opinions. However, to both this laity and those totally secular there is little satisfaction in the laws of the Bible and satisfaction in modern issues including social justice and ensuring equality for all.
So what is freedom? Your personal conclusion will differ depending on many factors, including your position on the spectrum of extreme piety to total atheism. You have the freedom to formulate your own opinion and the freedom to criticise other views.
And that’s what freedom is.
PS, I will be at Whitby Goth tomorrow so apologies if there’s no entry for the 23rd. It’s a long way there and back.