The Trap of Security
by Mark Votava
I have grown up into an environment that taught me to reach for security through my country, my family, my schooling and the dominant narratives of the entertainment media. But I am beginning to question this whole notion of security. I have been growing in my longing for freedom instead.
Can my freedom and the notion of security co-exist? I don’t think so anymore. Losing my idolatry to security has been so good for me. I am learning to be free from anxiety and coming to rest in a peaceful way of life where losing security is not so guarded, defended and stressed over within me.
I am learning to embrace joy even though there is so much suffering, poverty and injustice in the world. So many years have passed where I have lost my joy, my true self, because of the things around me that are pushing me to depression, sadness or loss as I focus on what is missing in life. But I am coming to understand the necessity to live in the paradox of freedom in the midst of pain, sadness, loss.
- Security is bought at the cost of freedom
Jacques Ellul says, “What people want when they talk about freedom is not being subject to others, being able to have their own dreams or go where they want to go. Hardly more. They definitely do not want to have to take charge of their own lives and be responsible for what they do. This means that they do not really want freedom… In effect freedom can give us everything except security by demanding that we be. Security is always inevitably bought at the cost of freedom…”
- Freedom and security do not mix well
Freedom and security do not mix well. Security is slavery to the empire around us. Security is most often too comfortable and status quo. We need to long for freedom, liberation from this kind of security that makes us numb and machine-like.
- A freedom related to love, humility, communion, connection, integration into place
Freedom promotes the shattering into pieces all status quo obstacles in our pursuit of creating a holistic counterculture as the body of Christ in the parish. Do we really want this kind of freedom? Freedom in our country is often times related to bloodshed and war, but what I want to propose is a freedom related to love, humility, communion, connection, integration into place.
- When we have security we do not have freedom
This kind of freedom lives within the mystical imagination. Freedom represents a responsibility to place. When we have security we do not have freedom, we do not live by faith.
- We cannot sacrifice our freedom any longer in order to be secure
Security is what makes us abusive, exploitive and unloving often times. We cannot sacrifice our freedom any longer in order to be secure. The body of Christ needs to live in freedom, we need to live by faith, we need to live in our bodies in everyday life in the place we inhabit together.
How can we experience freedom from security in our everyday lives together?