What is the definition of freedom? Watch

onefunnybunny
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If freedom is simply being able to do what you want, are animals freer than humans?
If freedom is not about doing what you want, what is the meaning of freedom?
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Axiomasher
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It's complicated.
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onefunnybunny
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
It's complicated.
If I found it simple, I wouldn't bother asking.
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by onefunnybunny)
If I found it simple, I wouldn't bother asking.
What I mean is, the same situation can be seen in two ways. Speed limits on motorways can be said to curb the freedom of the driver to go as fast as they would like. At the same time, speed limits on motorways can be said to increase the freedom of drivers from the likelihood of injury or death from bad accidents caused or exacerbated by speeding cars.
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gjd800
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+tive vs -tive liberty, my dude.
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Fathema29
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To do what you want to do without anyone judging you.
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onefunnybunny
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
What I mean is, the same situation can be seen in two ways. Speed limits on motorways can be said to curb the freedom of the driver to go as fast as they would like. At the same time, speed limits on motorways can be said to increase the freedom of drivers from the likelihood of injury or death from bad accidents caused or exacerbated by speeding cars.
If this is the case, how can human rights activists protest for the freedom of, say, slaves?
Of course, human-rights activists will claim that slaves are owned by other people, and that compromises their freedom to pursue their dreams as individuals.
However, if we look at the other side of the coin (as you suggest) slaves have more freedom than you or me: they can do what they want without concern for their future or their livelihood. (In order to make things simple, I define slaves as people who are controlled and owned by another person, however, they are well cared for).

If you define freedom as being one thing as well as its opposite, you cannot have anything but a philosophical debate on the topic. Freedom becomes a vague term that cannot be accessed. You've effectually turned Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" into a meaningless statement.
Last edited by onefunnybunny; 4 months ago
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onefunnybunny
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(Original post by Fathema29)
To do what you want to do without anyone judging you.
Let me see if I understand you. If I rephrase your statement, you're saying that real freedom is to allow a murderer to murder, and we are not to judge him for it, correct?
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Fathema29
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I mean as long as they’re not committing a crime obviously or hurting anyone else. 🙄🙄🙄
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by onefunnybunny)
If this is the case, how can human rights activists protest for the freedom of, say, slaves?
Of course, human-rights activists will claim that slaves are owned by other people, and that compromises their freedom to pursue their dreams as individuals.
However, if we look at the other side of the coin (as you suggest) slaves have more freedom than you or me: they can do what they want without concern for their future or their livelihood. (In order to make things simple, I define slaves as people who are controlled and owned by another person, however, they are well cared for).

If you define freedom as being one thing as well as its opposite, you cannot have anything but a philosophical debate on the topic. Freedom becomes a vague term that cannot be accessed. You've effectually turned Patrick Henry's "Give me liberty or give me death" into a meaningless statement.
Well, this is why I say the concept of 'freedom' is complicated and nuanced, I'd be sceptical of people who want to offer up a simple 'black and white' definition.
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onefunnybunny
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
Well, this is why I say the concept of 'freedom' is complicated and nuanced, I'd be sceptical of people who want to offer up a simple 'black and white' definition.
I, too, am skeptical of a simple answer to this question. However, if we don't define the word and understand it's meaning, we can't ever use it.
Last edited by onefunnybunny; 2 months ago
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by onefunnybunny)
I, too, am sceptical of a simple answer to this question. However, if we don't define the word and understand it's meaning, we can't ever use it.
It's not that the concept doesn't have meaning and value in specific contexts but rather that there's no overarching condition of freedom to be defined, at least not as I see it. To exist as a human being by itself involves inevitable physical and physiological limitations and therefore absences of 'freedoms' notwithstanding all of the curbs on freedom at a social/societal level.
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username121212
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For me I believe that the purest form of freedom would be being able to do anything you want whenever you want and never anything otherwise, which is of course impossible.

However it's one of those questions that is completely subjective and will never have a true definition. The most popular thing I hear people saying is that "your freedom ends where other's begins" which I guess means that if you're free you're able to do anything as long as it doesn't have any negative impact on others, which once again is subjective since you can defend that were you, for example, to not work you would be harming only yourself as you're the one who needs the money however this decision can have an indirect negative impact on your country therefore on your country's citizen's as well (although it would be quite minor)
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by xXPussySIayerXx)
For me I believe that the purest form of freedom would be being able to do anything you want ...
What about having freedom from your 'wants'? After all, to want something implies you are feeling compelled. Surely to be free from the feeling of wanting anything is the ultimate freedom.
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Parvus et Magnus
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
What about having freedom from your 'wants'? After all, to want something implies you are feeling compelled. Surely to be free from the feeling of wanting anything is the ultimate freedom.
'Wanting' is human. You are essentially not forced to pursue the want and could, if you so desire, suppress it. Freedom requires these wants, as you can now sculpt your desires freely based on what you have and what you don't. That, in my opinion, forms the foundation of freedom within one's means. If you are free from the feeling of wanting anything, you are not free, because, as peculiar as this may sound, freedom denotes being in tune with the whole spectrum of human emotions including desire. That is the ultimate freedom. To be free to explore sentiments and feelings, and adjust them to your own accord.
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by Parvus et Magnus)
'Wanting' is human. You are essentially not forced to pursue the want and could, if you so desire, suppress it....
Wanting something doesn't mean you must have it and it doesn't mean you cannot resist the wanting but it is still a 'want' nonetheless.
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Parvus et Magnus
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
Wanting something doesn't mean you must have it and it doesn't mean you cannot resist the wanting but it is still a 'want' nonetheless.
But wanting something means that you would like to have it.

In other words to the above, you are free 'to want' if you so desire. This doesn't impinge on your freedom, which is what you suggested.
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JoshDarnIt
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My definition of freedom is doing whatever the f*ck you want without the fear of judgement from others coupled with mastering your mind (like Buddha did by reaching enlightenment and overcoming suffering) and living outside of the societal structure (like Tyler Durden from Fight Club).

So far I've managed to do the first one
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Axiomasher
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(Original post by Parvus et Magnus)
But wanting something means that you would like to have it.

In other words to the above, you are free 'to want' if you so desire. This doesn't impinge on your freedom, which is what you suggested.
Wanting something and liking something are not the same, different words with different meanings. Wanting to quench a thirst is a force of nature transformed into an impositional thought, the greater the thirst the more the want. It's simply not scientific to suggest that our human impulses are metaphysical whims. Our desires are at root driven by instincts which we are not the authors of, we are not free of them.
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onefunnybunny
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(Original post by Axiomasher)
Wanting something doesn't mean you must have it and it doesn't mean you cannot resist the wanting but it is still a 'want' nonetheless.
I would suggest that one of our inherent inabilities, as humans, is being truly free. As you write, we cannot resist wanting even on a most basic, animal level. We want to eat - indeed, we must eat, else we'll die of starvation. We're never free of these needs/wants: as long as we have a physical existence, we'll need to sustain it, and so, ultimately, we're not free.
Let it be further mentioned that this is not a negative issue, rather, a fact of life.
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