Escape from Freedom

Sometimes life brings us to a point when we feel completely lost, aimless, confused.

Wondering where was it that we were going, or planning to get. Somehow, it did not happen.

We walk around busy cities and see empty from visions eyes. We were all born with a dream, weren’t we?

Well, think about it. What did you want to be when you were young? At a very young age, I wanted to be a teacher, a bit later, a translator, and then the dream to be helping people came and joined the others, all together creating a not letting go vision.

What happens to so many of us losing the child in them, the child with the sparkling eyes, full of faith and happiness? I believe nothing happens to that child. That child stays there forever. That child simply becomes a bit faded, tired, covered with must does and tasks, obligations, a routine he is sucked into before even noticing surround by information and people he was never searching for or ever wanted to be around. Somehow, without asking or wanting, we end up spending so much time around people that mean nothing to us, and so little time, with the people that are everything for us.

Without even realizing, we become slaves of rules, slaves of rights and wrongs, slaves of societies, religions, races, structures. We are taught what to do and what not to do. What to eat, what to wear, how to talk, what to say, and what to keep unsaid in the stomach. Even if we want to shout it out.

With the years, we know so well our imaginary limits that we are even scared to live outside of them, what do we do without them? We become scared of freedom.

Erich Fromm, who was significantly ahead of his time, wrote his book Escape from Freedom, which was first published in 1941. Moreover, it is relevant more than ever to our society and the world we live in. Here are deeply truthful quotes from his book.

“Most people are convinced that as long as they are not overtly forced to do something by an outside power, their decisions are theirs, and that if they want something, it is they who want it. But this is one of the great illusions we have about ourselves. A great number of our decisions are not really our own but are suggested to us from the outside; we have succeeded in persuading ourselves that it is we who have made the decision, whereas we have actually conformed with expectations of others, driven by the fear of isolation and by more direct threats to our life, freedom, and comfort.”

― Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

“The frightened individual seeks for somebody or something to tie his self to; he cannot bear to be his own individual self any longer, and he tries frantically to get rid of it and to feel security again by the elimination of this burden: the self.”

― Erich Fromm, Escape from Freedom

To sum up, I have said that before and I will keep repeating it all my life.

Do not be afraid to shine, because all limitations are illusions.

With Love,


Yana BinaevComment