The following essay is chapter 5 of Finding Freedom In An Age of Confusion, book 2 in The Conscious Resistance series.

The process of self-discovery and learning to question the commonly accepted beliefs that most of our society holds as infallible, is not always an easy or especially fun journey. For many of us the process can be quite scary as you feel like your whole life has been turned upside down. Both of us have vivid memories of many nights spent researching the nature of government and the nature of reality itself. Sleepless nights often lead to hopeless days and depression.

When you “wake up” and challenge dogmas related to government, health, relationships, authority, and history, you may experience a journey similar to those who are grieving the loss of a loved one. In her 1969 book, On Death and Dying, Swiss psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross discussed what came to be known as the Kübler-Ross model of grief. This included five different stages –  denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

This was not meant to be seen as a specific set of stages every individual will experience, or a specific order in which they may occur. Some individuals may grieve for long periods of time and experience all the stages while others may not. Still, the model offers some insight into what one may experience after challenging everything they have ever been taught or told by parents, teachers, priests, and politicians.

These feelings of anger and depression can often lead to feeling alone in a world of insanity. For far too long, people who have cared about freedom and imagined a better world for our species, have felt alone in their interests, and have been forced into the fringes of society. However, as the philosophy of freedom and non-aggression is beginning to seep into the mainstream culture, the times are changing.

There has always been a portion of society who rejected authority in their hearts without ever crossing paths with another anti-authoritarian, liberation-minded individual.

Today the world is much smaller and there is now a wealth of information available to more people than ever. Our digital world allows free thinkers to cross paths with regularity, which is helping to push along the philosophical renaissance predicted in The Conscious Resistance: Reflections on Anarchy and Spirituality.

With that said, there is still plenty of work to be done. Unfortunately, we are fighting an uphill battle where our opponent was given a head start. The vast majority of people alive today in the Western world were molded by the state in public schools and entertained by propaganda. Many of these people have been taught a deep love and support for the status quo. Still, despite the propaganda, the human spirit is so resistant to the irrational and unnatural concept of authority that even after 12 years of indoctrination and constant manipulation, we can still overcome and free our minds.

Despite the growing awakening, you may have experienced uncomfortable situations when you try to talk about your concerns in public. This creates a situation where no one feels comfortable sharing their opinions in public and none of us truly know how many rebels exist. In reality, there are a lot more rebels out there than most people think, but many go unnoticed because human beings want to fit in, and often we will avoid speaking about uncomfortable truths or ideas to avoid being ostracized.

This is why it is important for you to start making as much noise as possible. We must let the other rebels know they are not alone and encourage them to come out of hiding. Deep down we are all rebels, and the more people who step forward to admit it, the closer we will be to achieving freedom.  

We are all born rebels – that is our natural state. It is only after a lifetime of being beaten down by an insane culture that we come to embrace insanity for the sake of convenience.  Could it be possible that everyone out there is just pretending to go along with the status quo? It seems even those who wholeheartedly embrace it are still forced to use watered down language and euphemisms to describe the world around them because the cold hard truth is simply too much to bear.

As the State’s failed policies and unsustainable practices become more obvious, the status quo will become less of a convenience for people and they will begin to open to new ideas more than ever, and the rebels will come out of hiding.  These likeminded people are already all around you and the more open that you are about your own beliefs, the more open minded people you will attract.  

This doesn’t mean that it’s a good idea to get in everyone’s faces about it and create awkward situations for yourself, but it would be a wise move to begin testing the waters with subtle hints about your new found beliefs and see if anyone picks up. Find out who may be receptive to your ideas and who refuses to listen. If someone is genuinely not interested do not force your views as this will only create tension in your personal life.

It is important to remember not to be resentful and hateful towards those who cannot or will not research the information that is hiding behind the curtain. Words like “sheeple” and “statist” quickly turn from descriptors of an ignorant person, to a way to dismiss anyone who may not agree with your opinion or theory. We have to learn to accept people where they are and help those we can. The goal is collective liberation through individual empowerment, so ultimately it is up to each individual to carve their own path to freedom. Sometimes all you can do is plant seeds.

Surely, we are not the only ones who have noticed that even the “freedom movement” is quickly becoming as polarized and divided as the mainstream political circles.  While it is absolutely important to remain true to your individual principles, it may not be the most productive action to immediately disregard anyone who doesn’t see the world exactly as you see it.

The truth is, we all have blind spots in our thinking and we all have things to learn from other people. It is possible to have a friendly conversation with someone who sees the world completely different from you without sacrificing your beliefs, and without expecting them to sacrifice theirs.

That’s not to say that there are no right or wrong answers, because in many cases there are things which can be verified and proven, but standing on opposing ends of an issue and shoving ideas down one another’s throats is how the republicrats communicate. It is not how free people should communicate with each other.

For those of us standing outside of the left/right political paradigm, we see the stagnation and inefficiency that is caused by this sort of divisive approach to communication and problem solving.  Debates in political circles are typically centered around attacking your opponent and showing off, instead of being focused on actually solving the problems at hand. This is one of the many reasons why the solutions to the world’s problems will not come from governments as we know them today.

We must recognize that a growing number of people throughout the world are becoming disgusted with the violence and subjugation that has become commonplace in society.  We all come from different backgrounds, environments, and experiences. The information that has shaped our worlds differs from individual to individual. We have entered this “movement” with different preconceived notions about why we are in this mess and how to get out.

This may seem like a dangerous and volatile situation to someone used to seeing people with different opinions tear each other apart, but in reality this is a beautiful gift that we should all embrace as we attempt to learn from each other. If we think of the global situation as a giant puzzle, we can describe all of these different people with different viewpoints as a unique piece in that puzzle that is essential for its completion.

Some of us may be conservative on certain issues and liberal on others. We may call ourselves voluntaryists or libertarians, constitutionalists or Anarchists. We may be socialists or futurists, communists or individualists. We may disagree on a range of ideas, but the bottom line is that we have a great deal to learn from one another.

There is no way we are going to fight the mercantilist monster that stands before us if we don’t respect one another’s opinions and banish the idea that someone with a different opinion may actually have something valid to teach.

As free thinkers we should celebrate the moment that we learn new information, even if that information may cause us to change our minds and feel differently about certain things. ESPECIALLY if that information causes us to change our minds.  The ability to overcome one’s own ego and humbly change your mind when presented with new information is one of the fundamental characteristics of a “free thinker”.  

Again, we want to be clear that this does not mean that you should go around agreeing with what everyone says, or that you can’t be firm in your convictions, but it is just as important to remember that we are in this fight to solve problems and reduce the level of accepted violence. We are not here to break each other down and further divide our world. We are here to teach, learn, and build a better world.

Engaging in debates with people who are deeply entrenched in their own worldview may have some importance and value, but you will be disappointed if you expect to find likeminded people through this process.  That’s not to say you shouldn’t associate or discuss philosophy with people who disagree with you, because you absolutely should; but the more often we interact and connect with our brothers and sisters of similar worldview and goals, the more we contribute to a paradigm shift of hearts and minds.

A paradigm shift is a process in which individuals gain new knowledge which completely alters and evolves their understanding of the world. We believe we are currently experiencing a paradigm shift that has been taking place for generations with increasing awareness in the last decades of the 20th century. By educating yourself about the hidden truths of the world and seeking solutions that empower each of us, you are contributing to this paradigm shift.

As the State continues its death march and eventual collapse, it will become increasingly important to build communities in the digital and physical worlds. Together, we can educate each other and create solutions which put an end to systematic oppression, and allow the human spirit to flourish.

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