The tantric yoga philosophy ascribes the characteristic of svatantriya or ultimate freedom to the energy that infuses all of us. We all want to be free, but when we get stuck in our embodiment, forgetting that we ourselves are manifestations of spirit, then we lose sight of our true freedom. To find our own freedom of spirit, we need to be disciplined, to practice, to study, to live in a way that brings us into better alignment with ourselves and world with which we are inextricably interconnected.
In this country, one of our principle ideals and buzz words in dialogue about how we should live is freedom. What can so often be forgotten in this dialogue, though, is that freedom is a contract. To be in a society where all have the opportunity to experience freedom, we need to agree, with discrimination (viveka) to certain limitations (for example, we agree to stop for red lights so that we can be free to drive and walk without a constant risk of being hit in crowded city).
Granted, I am grossly oversimplifying here, but part of the great losses of freedom we are currently experiencing is the abdication by individuals of the responsibility to shape the agreement to maximize our collective freedoms. Like the agreement with ourselves to practice steadily to experience inner freedom, we need to stay engaged, even when it seems impossible or deeply frustrating, in order not to lose sight of the ideal entirely. Here’s some information from FCNL on why it is important to lobby despite how fruitless an act it may appear to be.