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Self-Mastery & Internal Control = Liberty & Freedom

In a recent article by Dan Sanchez titled Self-Improvement Is Inherently Pro-Liberty. He references a book on habits. The one he talks about impacting him is called The Atomic Habits.

It sounds like his experience is similar to many of ours, who are on a path of self-mastery through self-development. Stephen Covey’s The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People caught my attention and had an impact comparable to Mr. Sanchez’s.

“The Atomic Habits phenomenon is an encouraging one. In recent years, we have seen many troubling signs of cultural decay.” (1)

I was curious about why, how, and what the future looked like as society was on a suicide course.

While a police officer, I turned to a lifelong study of human behavior and how it ties into life in many ways. At this point in my life, I became interested in the end times, educational, political, religious, spiritual, historical, economic, philosophical, moral, and psychological issues, realizing how these subjects and concepts are interconnected and affect my life, my family, and the community I was serving and the nation at large.

The decay is complex, but it is simple as well. We started to stray from God; we weren’t about character, and our responsibility to maintain our freedoms by maintaining a high morality was being dropped from each generation as our eyes were set on the ease of life and the world’s trinkets and became a religious society in consumption.

While reading books similar to Atomic Habits, I realized the importance of self-mastery through self-development in building a better version of myself to show up for my family and community as a moral and mature person every day as I grew mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. The key was reading good books and starting down the road as a Classical Education pupil.

“Yet, at the same time, we are also seeing a counter-trend of millions seeking to build better versions of themselves and finding an effective guidebook for doing so.” (1)

As someone who studies history, I could feel, read, and sense how stressful and demanding it was for our Founding Fathers to achieve freedom and liberty for our country. At first glance, I felt it was all about getting people in the correct positions as the country was decaying.

“Both the conservative and the libertarian might agree that only a strategic focus on political change—getting the right people in office and the right laws in the books—will save us.” (1)

I soon realized this was not enough. I started to see that it was a combination of threads intersecting at one time, in one place, and under one geographical area whose people were following Tytler’s Cycle. Tytler and other sources have left us markers similar to mile markers on where we are on the path and direction of faith and liberty or bondage and tyranny as our periods somewhat parallel with one another.

The colonies were physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually bound to the Crown of England. In essence, the “Divine King” enslaved them. The Founding Generation and the moral leaders, the radicals of their day, were at the spear’s tip and entering the cycle’s Faith and Courage stages, as most colonists were lagging behind, dependent, and in bondage to the Crown.

They were entering the faith stage in all aspects of their lives, searching for unity, deep moral traits, self-development qualities, and self-mastery. A small portion of people were ahead of their time, as most of the people had not rotated to the faith part of the cycle. As they concentrated on self-mastery and challenged the status quo, they entered the courage stage, giving bravery and boldness to other colonials to enter the faith phase.

The bottom line is the importance of self-improvement, discipline, and introspection as individuals and as a collective. When people start improving themselves, they raised the bar for others to follow. They fit into the radical category, as Mark Twain described them.

“The radical of one century is the conservative of the next. The radical invents the views. When he has worn them out, the conservative adopt.” ― Mark Twain

I realized the importance of improving myself if I had any chance to help stop the decay, and I hoped to help the next generation return momentum to liberty and freedom once more.

The importance of changing and improving one’s internal self correlates to maintaining and growing our freedoms and liberties of the individual and the nation.

“All individuals are faced with the problem of whom to improve, themselves or others. Their aim, it seems to me, should be to affect their own unfolding, the upgrading of their own consciousness, in short, self-perfection.” (1)

We must turn inward by becoming more aware and conscious of our own cognitive dissonance, ignorance, and traditions along with our own insecurities, thoughts, beliefs, emotions, and behavior regarding daily choices of acting with logic, rationale, discipline, and forethought or attitude and conduct with emotions, impulses, and irrationality leading to regret.

From my own experience as a police officer for over 20 years and now working in the therapeutic and mental health industry, I would say that, as a whole, our society is not working on its inner self and is expanding its energies on controlling others and consuming hedonistic pleasures. They are either afraid, ignorant, or chose not to be introspective, aware, or reflective; it is difficult to dig deep, to challenge one’s own being as a whole. It is a painful, but yet a rewarding experience, as it is a gradual process to self-mastery.

“Those who don’t even try or, when trying, find self-perfection too difficult, usually seek to expend their energy on others.” (1)

As people exert their energy externally toward others and try to control people, we see manipulation, coercion, threats, and intimidation on a grand scale in all types of relationships, such as marriage, friends, family, work, schools, and ones that get left out is from our own elected and bureaucratic government from local, state, and national levels. We see these types of people and their qualities and behavior as abusive and authoritarian in nature.

“Their energy has to find some target. Those who succeed in directing their energy inward—particularly if they be blessed with great energy, like Goethe, for instance—become moral leaders.” (1)

As we can see, the Founding Fathers, a small percentage of the colonial population, led the charge in breaking away from the Crown of England and were in the Faith stage of Tytler’s Cycle. They turned their energy inward to master themselves as they became “moral leaders.” Those who wanted to control others, be abusive, and be tyrants were stuck in other stages and didn’t understand the legacy those who were radicals were about to perform.

“Those who fail to direct their energy inward and let it manifest itself externally—particularly if they be of great energy . . . become immoral leaders.” (1)

We see those without deep-seated, high universal morals, who concentrate on external values, become immoral people who are called “leaders.”

“Those who refuse to rule themselves are usually bent on ruling others.” (1)

“Those who can rule themselves usually have no interest in ruling others.” (1)

The Founding Fathers’ generation, with due respect to the World II generation, was the greatest generation. A common thread ran from the seeds of our country’s founding and into our ancestors of the World War II generation. That thread was character (2), as our nation’s momentum to that point was full of people who were reflective of themselves as they read the Bible (which understands human behavior, maybe one of the first books to be written on psychology). They knew the Constitution, and were in the process of mastering their thoughts, emotions, and behavior in order to be a moral people.

“With the American Revolution came a new rationale for basic literacy, and a new aim. Whereas the revolution of Luther and Calvin had provided a theological justification for reading, the revolution of Washington and Adams provided a civic one. Now children needed to read to be good Protestants but also to be good citizens to free themselves from the tyranny of popes as well as kings.” — Stephen Prothero, Religious Literacy

The rule, rather than the exception, was that the nation and its people were still connected to faith, as they showed courage with their voice, pen, and musket. They had earned their liberty in the War of Independence.

“At the extreme borders of the confederate States, the confines of society and wilderness, a population of bold adventurers have taken up their abode, who pierce the solitudes of the American woods….As soon as the pioneer reaches the place which is to serve him for a retreat, he fells a few trees and builds a log house. Nothing can offer a more miserable aspect than these isolated dwellings…. Yet no sort of comparison can be drawn between the pioneer and the dwelling that shelters him.

“Everything about him is primitive and wild, but he is himself the result of the labor and experience of eighteen centuries. He wears the dress and speaks the language of cities; he is acquainted with the past, curious about the future, and ready for argument about the present; he is, in short, a highly civilized being, who consents for a time to inhabit the backwoods, and who penetrates into the wilds of the New World with the Bible, an axe, and some newspapers. It is difficult to imagine the incredible rapidity with which thought circulates in the midst of these deserts (wilderness). I do not think that so much intellectual activity exists in the most enlightened and populous districts of France.” — Alexis de Tocqueville (Democracy in America, pp. 328-29)

After World War II, the nation seemed to enter the stage of abundance and selfishness.

We need to have people eat, drink, dress, ride, live, with ever more complicated and, therefore, constantly more expensive consumption. …What becomes clear is that from the larger viewpoint of our economy, the total effect of all the advertising and promotion and selling is to create and maintain the multiplicity and intensity of wants that are the spur to the standard of living in the United States.” — Victor Lebow (Economist), 1955 Journal of Retailing, Price Competition in 1955

Stephen Covey also noticed the nation was becoming more superficial and worried about image, self-absorbed, and quick fixes.

“As my study took me back through 200 years of writing about success, I noticed a startling pattern emerging in the content of the literature. . . . I began to feel more and more that much of the success literature of the past 50 years was superficial.” (2)

“It was filled with social image consciousness, techniques and quick fixes—with social Band-Aids and aspirin that addressed acute problems and sometimes even appeared to solve them temporarily, but left the underlying chronic problems untouched to fester and resurface time and again.” (2)

At first, it was a small leak; now, it is a flood. The seeds of our nation’s destruction were observed and felt as the hedonistic and self-indulgent disease took root and blossomed in the United States. At first, it was a trickle, but now it is flooding our homes with sewage from schools, media, music, and entertainment.

As our children go to school, grow up, head into the workforce, and assimilate into all parts of society, including government and the functions of the administration of the bureaucracy. The government of the people for the people is mirroring the disease as they are becoming tyrants as they have been raised with the disease and don’t even realize it.

Tyrants and narcissists are of the same breed as they have a hard time taking accountability because they have an ego and pride and are selfish as they can hide behind their government jobs.

Due to what our children learn from these institutions, our present and future culture and society become what each succeeding generation absorbs, consumes, allows, and tolerates. Exponentially, our country has become more selfish, egotistical, and prideful as more and more people are joining the bandwagon, some ignorantly, and others knowingly. This would account for the foundation layer of how these vices have been bred and combined together to evolve into a more narcissistic culture.

The disease would branch out into the national churches and our homes, competing with what should be taught about introspection, consciousness, and awareness of our minds, hearts, and souls of concentrating on self-mastery and internal self-control in learning and applying universal morals in individual and public decisions and behavior.

This disease has set the tone for modern Americans’ personalities, mood swings, and attitudes in our society and culture. It also affects relationships, primarily marriages, which is one reason society has so many divorces. Either one or both parties are tyrants, and desire external control. These traits and poisons are being passed on to the next generation as being normal, when in reality it is toxic and unhealthy.

(Source: Dr. Paul Jenkins Positive Parenting: Teaching Kids Responsibility & Welcome to Prison Planet: Slaves R Us And What We Can Do About on a Personal Level)

We can see how nations started with religion, morality, and stoicism to complete and accomplish liberty and become new nations under God.

“Our founders knew that Liberty is a combination of two equally important parts – it is FREEDOM under the constraints of MORALITY. Liberty cannot survive where there is pure freedom. Pure freedom gives man the right to do whatever is right in his own mind: cheat, lie, rob, murder. Pure freedom is anarchy. At the same time, Liberty cannot survive with moral law alone. Moral law not mingled with freedom is theocracy. Theocracy in the hands of men is tyranny in the name of religion. Our founders attempted give us this balance and secure the blessings of liberty for us in our founding documents. If we abandon our history, we abandon our founding documents and disregard our moral foundations, then liberty is in peril.” — KrisAnne Hall

Our current society and culture have directed and pushed our nation and its people to seek individual pleasure and selfishness. The rotting and death of society are when the country becomes apathetic, immoral, and dependent on the government as it centralizes its power, and its tyrannical and abusive leaders lead the people into all types of bondage.

The decaying society is all about epicureans being fond of or adapted to luxury or indulgence in sensual pleasures, having luxurious tastes or habits in eating and drinking, and the image of status, dress, and brands of cars and living in luxurious houses while keeping up with the Joneses.

“I should say that civilization begin with religion and stoicism: they end with scepticism and unbelief, and the undisciplined pursuit of individual pleasure. A civilization is born stoic and dies epicurean.” — Will Durant

Our nation was changing and not evolving well, as it created a new type of citizen—one not part of the original foundation that helped make America. The foundation was solid, but now the cracks are at its core, uprooting the concrete base and putting us on a course of destruction with a sandy foundation.

“We’re developing a new citizenry. One that will be very selected about cereals and automobiles, but won’t be able to think.” — Rod Sterling

Our society is being assisted, nudged, corrupted (from stoicism to epicurean) along the way by an oligarchy and monopolists that understands psychology and has weaponized it to manipulate and control the public mind.

This should cause your blood to boil.

All this to fleece and enrich the Globalist, parasites, unjustly rich, and “commercial nations.” (3) These tyrants want to place humanity into bondage by dumbing everyone down as their agenda consolidates and constricts to form the new feudal system, where We the People are the surfs as dumbed-down sheep. They are the overlords and masters over all matters.

As history repeats itself in the sense of Tytler’s Cycle. We see a portion and a percentage of people in several categories, with the majority being selfish and complacent as they are being herded into dependence and bondage by our usurper masters, landlords, and tyrants.

The key to our freedom and liberty is to return to self-mastery by having faith and returning to the morality of the Bible and God.

As we read the Bible and apply the moral principles as individuals and as a nation, we can live under a higher morality to avoid suffering from vice, crime, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war.

The Bible describes the chain of events and the one direction of the world as the tyrants enslave mankind.

If one chooses the hedonistic and epicurean lifestyle over the religious, faith, and self-mastery lifestyle, they will take on specific characteristics, where their hearts and minds form a specific citizen and conform to those low standards

As one chooses the attitude, mindset, and image of one who is religious and Stoic, another form of citizen takes place. Ultimately, they seem polar opposites and have a natural separation mechanism between the two paths.

As the fork in the road started after World War II, the rift and gap have widened with each generation. And each generation, due to the control and manipulation of the state-ran oppressive school system, our children are not getting the best education but are being indoctrinated through propaganda and becoming robots, clones, full of hate, and conforming to the standards of those who want Americans asleep, pacified, and enslaved. We are losing our children to the establishment when we send our kids to the school system.

“But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God-having a form of godliness but denying its power.” — 2 Timothy 3:1-5

The Bible compares the two paths look, feel, and the outcome.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.” — Galatians 5:22-26

One path leads to confusion, enslavement, instability, and tyranny, while the other leads to discipline, awareness, liberty, and self-mastery. Choose wisely which citizen you want to become because your soul and posterity depend on your choices, examples, responses, and path.

Will it be liberty or bondage?

The highest reward one gets from self-mastery, internal control, and freedom and liberty is what we become by living side by side with one another in a society of people who raise the bar and live the highest morals possible.

If we want to obtain Liberty again, we must master ourselves and teach the next generation to pass it on. We must teach them the terms, concepts, and behaviors of the different paths and outcomes. Instead of getting a master’s degree, let’s work on self-mastery.

In closing, Liberty and Freedom usually equate to “poor and free rather than rich and enslaved.” The system seems to reward and raise the obedient to be well-off. This makes sense, and it might cause people to fear losing their possessions or not want to chase liberty because money, possessions, and pleasures mean more than freedom.

(1) Self-Improvement Is Inherently Pro-Liberty

(2) What Kind of Man Is Our Country Turning Out? – Character Ethics vs Personality Ethics

(3) Thomas Jefferson to John Langdon, 5 March 1810


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