Saturday, April 23, 2016

The free will vegetarian


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April 23rd, 2016

The Free Will Vegetarian

I was skyping with my daughter Anna recently who told me something that, in my unbiased opinion, is both brilliant and very powerful. (She is currently in Guatemala on her first post college job working for Mayan Families  who provide support for impoverished Mayan families. (I’m so proud of her I could burst.)
I was talking with Anna recently about food and her path toward vegetarianism. She said, with a cheerful but fierce demeanor, 
“I’m a free will vegetarian”.  
  
Meaning, if she feels like having a piece of bacon she may well eat it. Someone else might object and point out that a vegetarian should not eat meat. She says, “Hey, I ‘m a free will vegetarian”.  I laughed as she reminded me of the Christian denomination called the Free Will Baptists (as opposed to the Baptists who believe that God has already decided and predetermined everything that is going to happen and everything we are going to do.)   

Anyway I think she means that she is determined that her VEGETARIANISM not become her master.   
&*% ISMs of all kinds (communism, capitalism, socialism, Catholicism, paganism, fruitarianism etc. etc.) often become our cruel masters. Or we tend to make them into our masters. The $%#ISM tells you what you MUST do. Then, typically in this process, you begin telling others what they MUST do.  At that point - you are inviting others into your own cage. 
 
My daughter has located her free will at a very young age and as she holds on to it - I know it will serve her well.  She will be a free will employee; a free will change-agent; a free will citizen of the United States (there are a lot fewer of those than we let on); a free will daughter; a free will intimate partner… 
A woman in the world with her own will.  
What a power she has claimed for herself.  How she has inspired her Dad to live free. 
As Errol Flynn, the classic actor in early adventure films, said when asked how he was able to demonstrate such artistic swordplay – 
“Hold your sword not too tight and not too loose” *





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*From The Courage to Love: Principles and Practices of Self-Relations Psychotherapy by Stephen Gilligan



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Copyright © 2016 David O. Aspenson, Ph.D



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