The Road to Freedom and Wisdom

By Luangpor Thong Abhakaro

Everybody wants and seeks freedom.  There are two kind of freedom: outer freedom and inner freedom.  Some people believe that there is only outer freedom and ignore the inner freedom.  They seek it outside of themselves, then miss the real and permanent freedom; the freedom that wisdom brings.

The real freedom must be led by wisdom.  This freedom cannot be found if we don’t have the right method.  Even if we have outer freedom, the real freedom cannot occur if there is no wisdom to lead us.  The real freedom comes from the mind or is in the mind.  We must study the life and the mind, so there can be real freedom and wisdom.

Therefore, the wise ones always try to convince us to seek freedom from inside.  Although there is outer freedom all over the country and the world, it’s impermanent.  If we don’t have wisdom, suffering will occur.  Only wisdom an set us free.  It is not wisdom that manages outside things or people; wisdom manages thought and the mind within.  It’s wisdom that conquers one’s self, that is the real freedom.

The one who can conquer himself of liberate himself is strong.  He is with himself or has self-awareness.

If we are not aware of ourselves or do not understand ourselves, freedom does not occur.  Even though we create many beautiful things outside, it’s still impossible to be free.

Actually, the real freedom and wisdom is inside everyone, but we seem to forget it or don’t realize that it’s inside.  So we seek outside of ourselves and cannot find or see it.  This freedom or wisdom should be cultivated and realized within ourselves.  It has nothing to do with education or knowledge or outside things.  If we study the mind inside ourselves, we will find it at the present moment while we’re alive.  We will attain what we want and seek.

This real freedom is there whether we know it or not.  Everyone has it whether they are educated or not since it is the truth which is unchangeable.  Outside things change with time but inner things do not change.  No one can change it.  It is free by its nature.  It is itself.  It is what everyone should seek and study with Sati (awareness), Samadhi (attention), and Panna (wisdom).

Let’s use our bodies as the road and our bodily knowing as the wisdom, then freedom will occur.  The bodily knowing is the law of nature, the law of freedom and the law of wisdom.  We cannot learn this thing from other people or from any text. 

It is the wisdom that is perfect and free by itself.  If we start to seek it now, we will find it in this life. Then we don’t have to rely on outer things.  If we just hope for it without practicing, we will never get and see the real thing.

Although our outer activities are good or look beautiful, we still suffer. [What is the method to do or not to do something to prevent suffering?] This is the important point.  If we suffer, our mind or life is not free.  In other words, whenever there is no suffering, at that moment there is freedom.

At this present moment, if someone could see that his mind has no suffering because it is neutral and free and can keep this state of mind all the time, then there would be freedom all the time.  This freedom is in everyone, of every religion and every language.  Even one who has no religion has it too.  To say it simply, this freedom has nothing to do with religion.  Religion is supposition.  This freedom is above all things. It exists by itself.  It is perfect by itself.

Do not waste your time.  Seek the truth and find it while you are alive.  When you die, there will be very little chance or no chance at all.  After death, we don’t know where we’ll go.  It is not certain because the people who have passed away have not come back to tell us or confirm a belief in the afterlife.

To do many good deeds and render services while still alive cannot guarantee the result 100 percent.  The only thing we can prove while we’re still alive is what we can touch.

The story about life after death is only a tactic of teaching or a personification used to teach those who are still alive and encourage them to study themselves so they won’t let their lives drift aimlessly. It is supposition or a metaphor, but we misunderstand it and attach to that teaching deeply.

If we don’t find and see the truth, freedom, or wisdom, we cannot transcend supposition.  Wisdom will be concealed by supposition and cannot reveal itself.  We will be in the dark.  If we look into our mind, life, and thought, supposition cannot conceal the truth from us.  Now we are afraid of the suppositions that we have created because we don’t understand them.  We deceive ourselves.  We are afraid and have doubt all the time, so our mind has no freedom or wisdom. Whatever we do, we have doubt, we aren’t certain.  But if we look into our mind, everything will reveal itself.

I want to ask you all to come back to yourselves.  Wherever you stay or go, or whatever you do —sitting, walking, standing, or lying down— be with yourselves.  The truth will reveal itself, and freedom or wisdom will occur. We won’t have to search anymore.