Step Two Hundred and Seventy-Nine

Step 279. I Must Experience My Freedom To Realize It.
Freedom is not a concept or an idea. It is an experience. Therefore, it must be realized in many, many different circumstances for you to see its universal application. This you are given time to accomplish. This will make all of your activities meaningful, purposeful and valuable. Then, you will have no foundation for condemning yourself or the world, for all things will strengthen your understanding of the necessity for Knowledge and all things will be the recipients of Knowledge.

Therefore, give yourself to practice, preparation and application. Do not identify merely with ideas, for even the greatest idea is meant to be an expression in changeable circumstances and will itself be unstable. To have genuine stability in the world, you must identify with Knowledge and allow Knowledge to demonstrate its power, its efficacy and its benevolence within the world. You must experience your freedom to value it and to comprehend its meaning in the world. This is why you are a student of Knowledge. And this is why you must apply everything that you are learning in your preparation here.

Remember this upon the hour as you are engaged in the world. Remember this in your deeper meditation practices where you are engaged in your inner life. In both arenas, Knowledge must prevail. In both arenas, your freedom must be exercised to be realized. In your deeper meditations, exercise the strength of your mind to enable it to come into stillness and quietude. Do not let fear or ambivalence dominate you this day. You are practicing your freedom and exercising it, for you can only be free when you are still inside, and if you are still inside, you are free already.

: Two 30-minute practice periods. Hourly practice.

Here you will find the entire book free for download

Here you will find pointers for getting started if this is your first encounter with this practice: Taking the Steps to Knowledge.

March 13, 2014 Round One: I don’t think I have really understood this concept of freedom yet, I have not really experienced freedom, so cannot realize it. I just don't know what it feels like. And what does it mean at the end when it says "for you can only be free when you are still inside"? Still inside what? Still inside myself? If this is what it means, then I have a better grasp on freedom, for inside myself I do feel free, inside I am free to be myself, I am my True Self without obstacles and hindrance. It's when I take things outside that things get difficult.

For some reason, I am recalling Winnie the Pooh here and a quote of his from A.A. Milne I am very partial to.

"When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it." - A. A. Milne
I won't go into my own interpretation of what I think Pooh is saying here, but for some reason it seems to go right along with this Step for me.

May 16, 2015 Round Two: I have a greater understanding of this Step today and I understand what it means by being “still inside.” I did not read it right the first time – now I understand it is talking about inner stillness. When I experience inner stillness I am free. I am free when inner stillness is my experience. When I am still inside, the outside world settles down and assumes its proper order. Life unfolds as it is supposed to, and things fall into place.

I was faced with a situation today that I could only deal with by remaining still inside. I cannot say I coped with this well, that I was able to remain unruffled and free. I found the situation intolerable and could only clamp shut and will it to go away. I am not convinced this was the best way to deal with it. I did not feel any support, Knowledge was silent, so perhaps I was approaching it the wrong way and needed to experience it. I guess the main thing was I did not allow the main culprit of my discomfort to see my anguish. I remained discreet. Only my husband knew, but we did not come to blows about it either. I wish to escape this kind of situation in the future. I am hoping it will not be oft repeated.


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