Soaring Into Freedom

The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. ~~Jim Morrison

Summer 2014 394This quote seems rather fitting for a post on freedom as I sifted through some of the photos I took last week at the zoo. The subject of freedom has been circling my head since our resent visit. And yes, all the animals there are caged in and certainly not free. But the image of these two bald eagles stayed with me more than the others. I’m sure they were injured and rescued at one point, obviously unable to fly since there were no restrictions stopping them from taking flight.

Growing up, I was taught about nature’s wisdom, survival of the fittest, and all that realistic stuff that make kids cry into their pillow at night. While at times it might have seemed cruel I now wonder about the efforts we make to rescue animals if a part of that rescue keeps them from doing what they were meant to do.

I imagine an eagle soaring through the sky and think that flying above the treetops must be a remarkable thing, to know that sense of freedom. An eagle that can’t fly seems like an injustice and by rescuing it in this way perhaps we simply traded its “reality for a role,” an animal now held in captivity, a reality that suits our own agenda.

Many of us think that life, no matter how diminished, is far more important than the quality of that same life. It is a subject that I find fascinating as I try to imagine how it would feel to be that earthbound eagle, to have once known that freedom, yet never to feel it again.

What are your thoughts on freedom? Are you an earthbound eagle or do you prefer to soar?

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10 Comments

  1. That is food for thought. I wonder…in our throw-away society, would there be anything left?

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  2. Laura, my feelings about this topic are so powerful, I will have to be careful not to get too over-the-top. I will say … I HATE zoos. The arrogance and stupidity of men to think they can absolve themselves from the horror they wreak on nature by putting some if it a box and calling it research. Soon we will take a few pairs of rhino and elephants and put them in cages and tell the world we are attempting to save their kind. When we could save them by banning the use of ivory in anything man made. We could save the seals from the carnage. We can save the oceans and we can save the skies for the proud eagle.

    I was told years ago that my inner animal is the eagle. I was in a state of hypnosis and saw myself flying through the clouds, free and happy. I will never believe that my fellow eagle would be happy to be earth bound. Our place is in the sky … free!!

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    • I tend to agree with you, Florence, when to comes to the eagles.We once went to the Eagle Watch about an hour or so from where we live. We saw a lot of eagles. They are so magnificent. Growing up, eagles and hawks were so scare in these parts, but now the population is gaining in numbers. I see hawks most every day and eagles are a common sight as well. In my memory I can remember only seeing one bald eagle as a child. So knowing they are gaining in numbers makes me very happy. 🙂

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      • That is so wonderful. Did you know that there are falcons in the steeple of Riverside Church in Manhattan and they can be seen flying over the Hudson. That steeple … the steeple of Saint John The Divine and in the Inwood Hills in Northern Manhattan have an abundance of falcons, hawks and the gray owls. There is even a pair of swans in the inlet near Inwood Park. Gotta say, it’s so odd to have such wonders of nature in New York City 🙂

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  3. I’m the one crying in my pillow. Enough said on that subject. LOL. Love my eagles here at our lake. Can’t imagine life without them soaring past. The first time we made eye contact, well–I’ll never forget it.

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  4. Your post made me think of people who are suddenly incapacitated – confined to a wheelchair, nursing home, etc. I feel like their quality of life is determined by who’s there with them, supporting them and helping them make the transition to this new life. Maybe those two eagles are the best of friends, and the companionship makes it all worthwhile – we can only hope:)

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