After a year of “freedom through strength,” the new Mindcoolness slogan is “ad libertatem naturae.”
Freedom Through Strength meant self-liberation through the power of will. To live the life you truly want to live and do what you truly want to do, you need self-discipline. For otherwise, your bad habits and fleeting desires will drag you down a path of weakness. To resist habitual-affective slavery, you must strengthen the power of your will and build discipline. This was the common theme underlying the older articles on this blog. I put it all together in my book Willpower Condensed.
With Ad Libertatem Naturae, I lay particular emphasis on moving “(back) to the freedom of nature.” Freedom of nature is the freedom to live true to our nature, to follow our own will, our True Will, and to not be enslaved by the government, the economy, the advertising industry, the media and its entertainment (everything that hijacks our attention), over-civilized social conditioning, habitual drug use, and, most importantly, our own self-enslaving beliefs, ego-founding stories, unpractical opinions, and bullshit worries about how we appear to other people. To grow free from all that is to grow into the freedom of nature. Freedom is not something we have or attain; it is something we grow into.
In a sense, of course, everything is part of nature, including civilization, laws, marketing strategies, drugs, human behavior, and even our inner emotional and mental life. So one could argue that “ad libertatem naturae” is an empty slogan. Since everything is a part of nature, one can never not be free. Therefore, moving toward the freedom of nature cannot be an actual movement because one is always there already—one is free by necessity.
Despite this trueness, however, we fail to consistently experience the freedom of nature. We might experience it when we are physically in nature, maybe hiking on a mountain, but most of the time we ruminate about the past or worry about the future; our minds aren’t cool. Now, our hopes and fears and angers and shames may, again, be part of our nature, but only by accepting them as what they are can we be truly free, can we be both theoretically and experientially liberated.
Certainly, I could describe this kind of acceptance as freedom through strength, whereby the strength is spiritual. However, “freedom through strength” sounds more forceful, more militaristic, more political than “ad libertatem naturae,” and as you might know, I don’t care much about politics because, living in a relatively free part of the world, our political discussions are rarely more than futile battles of insubstantial ideas or just a grown-up version of gossip.
On top of that, I don’t want to give first-time visitors the impression that this blog is all about muscles, guns, and physical power. Although I still regard physical strength as an important aspect of freedom, I have come to realize that physical strength and even volitional strength (willpower) are much easier to attain than emotional and spiritual strength. Often, the latter isn’t even seen as a strength by the common, childlike people who only care about effective ego protection. But what do I care. Ad Libertatem Naturae is what I care about!
- On the Emptiness of Freedom
- Why the True Will Is Not a Free Will
- On the Freedom To Do What We (Truly) Want
- How Moderation Gives Us Freedom
- Is Happiness the End Goal?