black woman with headscarf behind fence

We’re All Slaves. Why Not Be a Slave to Life?

There is this saying that freedom isn’t free. That’s to say freedom doesn’t come without effort. This is especially the case in a world that is built on power and oppression. To receive freedom, one must commit to it, disregarding any temptation to oppress others while searching for our own.

I understand the paradox in this title. I also understand that many people will be put off by saying that we need to be slaves to anything. One thing we need to take into account when talking about slavery is that the American slavery experience isn’t the only experience. There is a lot of stigma when using the word.

The Humility in Slavery

A slave has no self. They really have no dignity because they have no property. They were treated as property. Slaves have no rights, no freedom, and no need to ponder on things like life’s purpose. Slaves are dependent on the one who owns them. To believe that you are not a slave in this world of perceived free will would be incorrect. We are owned by the perceptions of others We are owned by our status in our community and our perceived dignity. Our jobs are on us. We are even owned by inanimate objects like houses, cars, and other things we think we own, but must be maintained. The thing about being a willing slave is the knowledge that we have a choice as to what we want to be slaves to. It also comes with the knowledge that one cannot serve two masters.

Knowing what you want to be a slave to comes with understanding the relationship that one has with his master. Slavery isn’t a blanket evil for all that were involved. People are going to come with their pitchforks for me saying this, but slavery also comes with benefits such as a familial environment, food, shelter, and safety. It truly believed in the owner.

The Good Master

We have to trust our owners. Many people put their trust in the economy, the government, a politician, an ideology, or an occupation only to eventually realize their owner has failed them. A slave knows that a good slave owner prioritizes the slave’s well-being. If we are the slaves of Life, we trust that whatever happens to us will culminate into what is good for us. In this case, we understand that even when negativity arrives, even when we feel as though we are being punished, we can endure because we realize that Life only has its best interest for us.

The Myth of Sacrifice

I think we subconsciously know this. When we put considerable effort into something we call it a sacrifice because we have no guarantee that our efforts will promote our well-being. We’d like to believe they do, but there are times when they do not. We see it in the person who works overtime and weekends believing that their hard work will result in a promotion. It turns into frustration when that promotion doesn’t seem like it’s ever coming.

The long hours are harming our physical health while the misplaced expectations are harming our mental health. All this is because we are a slave to authority’s idea of productivity. Even if we were to get that promotion, it only means more work, more responsibility, and possibly longer hours if that was the prerequisite needed to receive the promotion in the first place. There’s essentially no point in this type of suffering.

Your company’s priority will always be profit as that’s the lifeblood of the company. People can be and are replaced at any time. Just look at the layoff news. Why give your all to anything in which you don’t see a clear source of care for yourself and those around you? Your goals don’t care about you. The rules that you abide by don’t care about you. What you believe to be success milestones in life don’t care about you. Why do we allow ourselves to be owned by these ideas?

Loving What Can Be Loved

Let’s contrast this with the example of taking care of a puppy. For many of us, a puppy in the house produces nothing but pee and poop. We like to think that we are their owners, but when you think about it, it’s quite the other way around. We are the ones to clean after a puppy, we feed them, we bathe them, and we take them out to be exercised. Financially, we pay for their doctor visits, medicine, and any specialized food that they need. All this to please our puppy. Why do we put up with all of this?

We do because we know that our puppy will always be excited for us when we open the door. No matter our mood, the licks of a puppy will always cheer us up. Even if we forget about them, neglect them, or treat them harshly, we know that we will always receive unconditional love in return. In this way, we are a willing slave to our puppies. It makes it easier to see how we become willing slaves to the things we love. It’s one thing to say you love your puppy, but another to say you love money. How can we love money when money has no capability of loving you back? If we don’t choose to be slaves to what we love, we will choose to be slaves to what we fear. We don’t love money. We’re afraid of the idea of poverty.

Time to Put on New Shackles

So how do we become slaves to Life. A better question is how to do we choose to become slaves to Life. The answer is quite simple. It’s submitting to Life. It’s surrender and acceptance. To do this, one must first trust that this life that we live only wants to best for us. Just like taking care of a puppy, any struggles that come with living is the price we pay for the love that we receive while we live. To be a slave to Life, we must do what is pleasing to Life. You can look at your life to understand what is pleasing to you and to others. We all want happiness, joy, love, excitement, and peace. When you hear the statement, “I just want to live!!!” what do you think will accomplish this? Do that. If we are creating this in our life, we are a great servant to that which wants to Life and Life abundantly.