"Freedom is the only word which has a ring of immediate truth today… If, instead of such slogans as peace founded on justice, or peace imposed by force, people would only speak of peace based on freedom, then this word would echo round the world and kindle in the hearts of all a sense of security." Quote
The Philosophy Of Freedom was written to give a clear picture of what freedom is and how personal freedom can be the fundamental moral value of social and political life. This libertarian view is called ethical individualism. It regards the individual as the source of all morality and the center of all life. It upholds the principles of individual liberty especially freedom of thought, expression, and action.
For expression to be individual and for action to be ethical it must be your own. This is possible with the emancipation of thinking from instinctive urges, social conditioning and cognitive bias. Freedom is reached at the level of universal thinking (pure reason) when knowledge springs from within as personal truth. Truth brings conviction that empowers ethical action. The highest pleasure of a true individualist is ethical action, that is, to realize one’s ideals in life.
A community building harmony of intentions is possible among the free who draw their intentions from universal principles, not external (physical or spiritual) impulses. To live and let live is the fundamental principle of the free.
Ethical individualism may be what many are looking for to face the ethical, social and political issues of today. Yes it is an ideal as none of us are free in all our actions yet the impulse of freedom has life and is working to express itself in each of us. As activist Myles Horton said, “Nothing will change until we change - until we throw off our dependence and act for ourselves.”