Creative acts—the edge of freedom
We commonly think of freedom as “freedom from,” “freedom of,” or “freedom to” do or be something, or as the ability to define alternatives and select among them. But freedom far exceeds anything on that spectrum—it’s being able to redefine ourselves and reality at large, generating whole new sets of possibilities. History is punctuated by such redefinitions—creative acts that open new worlds. In this sense, we can call creative acts the edge of freedom—the faculty by which, down through history, we have redefined our world and ourselves.1
Freedom is not like other phenomena. It’s closer to “being” than it is to some “thing.” It has nothing to do with options. It requires dimensionality—if we try to move freedom through a world of limited possibility, it can never show up as itself, it’s always distorted as something else. Freedom doesn’t live in a temporality like past, present, and future—it doesn’t stop, in the same way that “number” doesn’t stop giving numbers or that art is not repeating, in a new way, the past. There’s nothing pulling one way or the other, there is just this awesome freedom. Freedom is about choosing—it’s about the profoundly human ability to create.
1 Grudin, R. “The Grace of Great Things: Creativity & Innovation.”
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