With all of this talk about politics in the air, I wanted to take a second and reflect on what those three things mean to me without all the political skewing of information. (This has nothing to do with either candidates, parties or specific groups of people.)
Life: No one’s life is ever easy. We all face trials and tribulations with every decision we make or don’t make, even. What life means to me is choice. Our past makes us who we are in our present and prepares us for who we are meant to be in our future. Without choices, we would all follow the same path, and never once wonder what was off the main road. Without decisions, there would never be great authors like Charles Dickens or Mary Shelley, or great politicians like Ronald Reagan or Theodore Roosevelt. Life is about making a conscious effort to better the future for ourselves and all those who choose next.
Liberty: When we are kids, liberty’s main meaning is the big green lady who welcomes people to New York City. As adults, liberty takes on a new persona. The big green lady will always be what pops into most peoples minds, but as we live our lives and make our decisions, liberty begins to mean freedom. Freedom to make our choices that lead us to who we want to be in this world. Freedom isn’t free, but it is what allows us to wake up in the morning and have the ability to decide what we want to do or be a part of that day and any other day to come. Without freedom, we are no better than worker bees, biding our queen’s decisions and following the only path set for us.
Pursuit of Happiness: There are a few debates as to what Mr. Jefferson meant by this last part of the phrase, whether he meant true happiness or prosperity of land, but to me, the pursuit of happiness means having the freedom to make the decisions that will best bring me to a place of joy. There is no way Mr. Jefferson could have ever foreseen what the standards of happiness mean in today’s society, so it is not difficult for me to understand the prosperity of land idea (it was their idea of a good time back in the late 1700’s), but for some reason that I cannot seem to express, I fully believe that Mr. Jefferson wanted the people of this country to find whatever made them happy and pursue it until it is ours.
I have a strict no politics or religion rule that I try very hard to follow because I do not want to offend anyone, but with this phrase, I think we can all agree as Americans that life should be dedicated to choices, the liberty and freedom to make those choices, and the clear pursuit of true happiness in whatever it is that brings us joy.
To counting down the days until election season is over! Dedicating this to all who believe in the freedom of choosing what makes you happy.