Losing some freedom to gain it in the future.
This post presents a philosophical idea inspired by the text of today’s Daf. The Daf is one page in the Talmud that tens of thousands of people study each day. I explain the connection to the text in a comment below. My purpose is to show that there are underlying philosophical assumptions in the Talmud that can have great significance for anybody today trying to understand our complex reality.
Some of the choices you make today can limit your options in the future. For instance, if you made a commitment to your friend yesterday to spend the entire day helping them repair their home, you are now limited in your freedom due to the actions taken yesterday. This kind of scenario is a common occurrence.
Is it right to make commitments that restrict your freedom in the present? And should you uphold commitments made in the past? It may be that your current freedom requires disregarding restrictions from your past self. After all, why should your past self have more control over your present self than your present self does? Is your past self more important than your current self?
Yes, it’s crucial to make choices today that may limit your future freedom, as this is necessary to ensure that you have agency over your future. Your present freedom requires that you have control over your future, and without it, you risk being powerless and unable to act as an agent in your own life. To preserve your freedom today, it’s necessary to make sacrifices that may impact your future freedom.
Similarly, in order to maximize your freedom, it’s necessary to accept the limitations imposed by your past actions. Although this may seem to limit your freedom, it’s a trade-off that ultimately increases your freedom in other ways. Honoring past commitments enhances your ability to make future commitments, and having control over your future is essential for having any freedom at all. This not only strengthens you psychologically, but also socially. By exhibiting responsible behavior, you develop a responsible character and demonstrate to others that they can trust your commitments. As a result, a trustworthy individual is often granted more choices by society.
submitted by /u/eliyah23rd