What is your definition of freedom? Everyone has their own definition of freedom, many will include money. My definition of freedom is learning, taking in knowledge and being able to make informed decisions about the choices I make in life. Therefore, following on from my first post 'Making a difference' is learning. I'm not talking about the type of learning we did at school, although that is a very important part of being able to read and write. I'm referring to the type of learning/self-development we take on after we leave those establishments. Since, I touched on the importance of books and how important they were to me, I thought it fit to expand a bit more about it in this post.
"Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune." Jim Rohn
I'm sure many of you would say you read the newspaper daily to keep abreast with what is happening. Some of you may read a good fiction to pass the time but how many of you actually read something daily to develop your mind/self.
"Don't just read the easy stuff. You may be entertained by it, but you will never grow from it." Jim Rohn
Going deep within yourself unleashes the power of your inner soul, your purpose in life, your passion, your conviction... that "only you can bring to this world" and owe it to the world to find it out, as Marie Forleo likes to say.
"Always be a first rate version of yourself, instead of a second rate version of someone else" Judy Garland
I am not saying to leave your job and be a hermit, in order, for you to do this but to find time to educate yourself if you want to live a happy and prosperous life. If you happen to be in a job that you love, then learn to be the best in your job. On the other hand, if you don't like your job, learn to be the best in that job too, until you find what it is you want to do. Denzel Washington once said, "don't just work to make a living, work to make a difference."
"If you want a happy life, tie it to a goal, not to people or objects." Albert Einstein
Give yourself permission to dream big. Don't let anyone tell you what you can and cannot do, don't live by anyone else's ideal. But don't just dream; work hard at your dream; educate yourself; learn through those you admire; surround yourself with people who believes in you but most importantly believe in yourself; don't get discouraged by rejection or criticism; keep focused and it will happen; also, keep in mind that whatever you want has to be for the good of the whole rather than just yourself. "What I want for myself, I want for everybody." Jones of Toledo
"Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner." Lao Tzu
So, learning about oneself is important and had we been given this type of education at school, perhaps, we would have been a much better, happier person now. On a positive side of it though, I think that as an adult we have the capacity to understand and develop more from learning. For example, I started studying the bible from the age of 9 (my choice) but it wasn't until later in adulthood that I understood the words in the bible and had many aha/eureka moments which Oprah always talks about. The reason I understood it later was because I started reading other spiritual materials, as a result of feeling confined within the dogmas of religion, and also as a seeker of truth. I wanted to expand in the universal love and compassion for others without being judgemental because God is love and compassion. Books like Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, Lao Tzu: The parallel sayings, helped me understand the true meaning of those words in the bible (in my opinion). For me, to live by those sayings are more important than any religion. I want to take the "road less travelled," i.e. to take the journey within myself.
"You don't understand anything until you learn it more than one way." Marvin Minsky
These books that stretches the mind are not meant to be read once and put away but are to be read over and over again like a bible to reap the benefits. One book that changed how I perceive life is called Working with the law by Raymond Holliwell.
"Man's mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regain its original dimensions." Oliver Wendell Holmes
Lastly, I would like to say a few words of caution here, as to taking in knowledge. Make sure you plant the best seeds in your garden (mind) as it will determine your harvest (what you attract), and stay guard at the gate of your mind for any weeds (negative thoughts), as Jesus says "as you sow so shall you reap." Don't be afraid to change old beliefs just because you were raised with it, go with reason, gut-instinct and what makes you a better person because what makes you a better human being can never be wrong.
"The illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn." Alvin Toffler
I now would like to invite you to tell me about the books that you feel has changed your life and the value you feel self-development has brought into your life.
As usual, I leave you with a poem and wish you happy leaning!
Knowledge is power
Open the windows of your mind
And let your soul shine
Making you beautiful and kind
Knowledge is the key
Use it wisely
To discern what is to be
Only you can choose
Darkness or light
Fear or might
Dread or delight
But choose you must
So choose right
S R Lore
I am a person who is into self development and I am always learning and striving to be the best of myself. I like to empower others to make a difference in theirs and others lives. I also like to express myself creatively through poetry. "I'm an architect, of myself...."