A Beautiful Day for Understanding Freedom
These four years—a gift, a pause, an
acceleration—an opportunity to make the ensuing post-college
years wonderful and adventurous.
I am here to ask the important
questions. I think that is why we are all here.
Today was a very special day. I found, for the first time, a grasp
on what freedom is and what it means to be
free. Not that I hadn’t
thought about it before. No, no, my whole senior year English class was devoted
to the “American Dream,” which is closely associated with freedom.
And our society and our instinctual impulses revolve and thrive off of freedom.
But I had never reached a definitive conclusion. I am slow to reach conclusions—they
take time to evolve, time to be exposed to all of the evidence, time to congeal.
But today freedom made sense to me.
Let me step back. About five months ago I
enrolled for the summer class, Rhetoric
309S—argumentation and persuasive writing. About three months ago, the
class began. It was small, intimate and exciting. We got to choose our topics
of debate and ask the questions we felt were important and attempt to sift
through the evidence to find the solution. I was inspired by the class and
the teacher was great. Two weeks ago I e-mailed the teacher to ask to have
coffee with her and follow up on some questions and debates we had proposed
Today, we met for coffee and began chiseling out the sweet and sour of the
world we live in today.
I feel so naïve trying to understand
the root of the world’s problems
and trying to understand the ultimate purpose and plan of how to go about
creating a solution to those problems. I know that for ages, humans
have worked hard
and long, stretching their brains and extending their limits, to create utopia,
at least a better world, and I suppose this very minute that they continue
this pursuit, constantly cranking out questions and answers, and more questions
working to fix the glitches as they go along. All that is required of me
is to go along and exist. But, I don’t entrust others with
the job of asking all the questions that matter. In fact nobody
should. We each have a personal
obligation to ask those questions ourselves. For example, what is beauty?
How real is the man sitting next to me? Do trees think? Is a feeling
made of matter?
What does it mean to live with soul? What is a soul?
Asking these questions
is like putting leaves in the water. We put as many as we can out
into the water and see what comes back. Some return immediately.
take years and years.
Right. Freedom. We all have one life. That’s
approximately 25,550 days if you live to be 70. Some have far fewer
days, some have far
more. We should
all have the freedom to dream, dream up wonderful magical dreams, dreams
beyond our wildest dreams, and then have the freedom to actualize our dreams.
true freedom. That is true living.
Within the last 37 days, I have come
face to face with a few of my dreams.
I flew this last weekend.
I flew an airplane. Those small circular plane windows don’t
do justice to the wide-open view of the cockpit. A good friend
of mine in the UT flying club asked me along.
I have wanted to learn how to fly
for sometime, but it is an expensive hobby so I thought I should give it
some breathing space before I made the investment. But I didn’t
have to go to this dream, it came to me. We flew to Galveston.
After a one-and-a-half-hour
plane ride over Texas countryside, we ate some fresh seafood, swam in the
sea, walked on the beach, learned how to hula, hopped back on the
plane to catch the
sun melting into the horizon and thus concluded a beautiful day.
see. I joined the Texas Crew. I have always wanted to be bionic and I
love boats. Texas Crew offers the right ingredients.
I made the
UT Mock Trial team. Very exciting. In fact, it was the night of
the UT Mock Trial party, when upon arrival to the party
I could feel
excitement of fiery debates and finally exhaled because I had found a “hot
life (see Journal 1 for reference).
I am working on trying every snow
cone flavor offered at the snow cone shop on Lamar Boulevard. (I highly
recommend visiting if you find yourself
There are a lot of other people here looking
for the truth, looking for better solutions. But there have always
a human quality. It is why we have come this far; it is what will determine
where we will be tomorrow.
We all have one life, this life, to actualize
our dreams and settle any inner yearnings. It’s a lucky chance
to have four years to devote to accumulating tools and skills to
aid in making the rest of your life
everything you want it
Scrolled in stone at the entrance to the
UT Tower reads the words, “Ye shall know the truth, and the
truth shall make you free.”
So it is not a question of if,
it is a question of when. The sooner you ask, the sooner you will