This happens to be the title of a book by the late South African Anti-apartheid activist, Steven Biko. An excerpt: “the most potent weapon in the hands of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed.” This just couldn’t have been better said!
You know, in our shared existence, nothing is and will be as important as the fight for the freedom of the human spirit. The human spirit cannot be cowed. It will always resist oppression and manipulation when it senses it. By design, we were not made to conform but to stand-out and to freely express our uniqueness. No matter how much resources that an individual is provided with as a means of distraction, s/he will still strive for as much freedom as s/he can possibly negotiate for.
The way it works is that, although utopian, every human should have the right and choice to determine what line of work they want to commit their life to without the tyranny of cultural and systemic social controls that have been put in place to subtly manipulate the choices of people — mostly the younger generation. They should be allowed to be whatever they want and to do whatever they are passionate about.
It is worth mentioning that we live in the best of times and never have we had all the tools and freedom to do what we like to do. Without the permission of anybody. Today, you will be selling yourself short if you fall for the grand deception that your highest level of happiness is in a particular industry, a line of job (with a kind of salary); most especially the one society has chosen for all of us.
It’s a trap, don’t fall for it!
Here’s what to know: Your dreams are valid and there is no such thing as professional and unprofessional jobs or line of work. All of the tyrannical societal moulds of white collar and blue collar catalogues are all balderdash. They are systemic philosophies of oppression to advance a kind of agenda that gives away our individual sense of agency.
Don’t fall for it!
Do what you like. Engage your time (or better said, your life) in doing the kind of thing that makes the highest resonance with your core. Commit to the thing you really like to do and would do if only money wasn’t an issue — those hobbies that have a semblance of purpose. Commercialize them! Start as a hobby, move it up to a part-time job. And work towards the freedom of making it a full-time job. Do what you like in this one life you have got. Live full and die empty. Don’t live for others — their expectations of you and their fears. Live inside out, bless the world with your unique gift and talents. Do what you like! In the words of Asa, the pop singer, “nobody knows, there’s no right way, nobody knows, there’s no wrong way”. True! Nobody can tell for sure. At a level of consciousness, the questions of your life are not about answering right or wrong on the basis of society’s marking guide crafted by a few.
For once, discount the idea of living your life according to the job market — which job pays more and which doesn’t, which has more status and which does not. That shouldn’t be the key criteria in your decision box. For once, refuse to limit yourself to the box of what society defines as normal. Be a good rebel by drawing your own box! Don’t follow the old worn out paths. You can wear good fitting sharp suits every day to work and still live a miserable life. You know, every time I come across individuals who serve in the military and in police formation, I wonder if they live in this same world with all the inherent pressures to conform. These folks put their lives on the line daily, just so we can have some kind of security. Some of them have lost their families and friends so we can keep ours. It is the life they have chosen. A noble calling that is deserving of great respect and honour.
Again, do what you like.
Thankfully, the idea of entrepreneurship (& socio-entrepreneuship) gives us all a chance to do what we like for a living which then means that we no longer have excuses.
I remind you that on your deathbed, 2nd quarter profit and how many houses you have around the world or money in the bank will pale into insignificance. It will matter that you, did what you liked to do.
Your dreams are valid my friend.
Go make a ruckus – we are waiting for you!