Maybe you'd expect me now to talk about freedom of speech and similar law or even computer-related freedoms.
But no. This time I'm talking about it from the philosophical viewpoint. I went to the movies the other day with a very dear friend of mine and afterwards we had a little talk – like we always do – and the topic somehow led to the connection between the terrain you live on and the feeling of freedom. There is said to be a theory theaching that people living in wide open areas are bound to feel more free (and thus demand more of it as well). On the other hand the mountains are supposed to give a feeling of being caught and of boundries.
I've given this theory a bit of though and I – as a person who just adores the sea and the mountains – think it's rather rubish. I've been myself in open plains as well as in mountains and on the open sea. And I have to say that as much as I enjoy the lowlands, nothing compares to the freedom of hills, mountains and the sea. But why is it so?
Maybe it's just the lowlands I've been to, but the feeling I have with lowlands is that they feel empty. If there is no hills, lakes aut simili to break up the land, it just feels …well, like there's things missing, like a boring continous flat nothingness that stretches all the way to the horizon. Of course, there are forests and rivers and buildings and other things – but it somehow makes it rather the same whether you're at one point on the land or on another. That doesn't mean that I don't believe that the lowlanders don't feel free. Quite the contrary! But it's just another form of freedom. I think they just feel free do whatever they feel like, since there's no (natural) boundries to stop them.
On the other hand the highlands with it's high peaks and low valleys give their inhabitants a different feel of freedom. The rough terrain makes life harder and the natural obstacles for transportation aren't exactly a joke either. But on the other side it's exactly these obstacles that produce the other type of freedom – the freedom to push your boundries. There is just a different feel to it when you're on top of a mountain you just conquered yourself with your own might and see the view of the whole valleys, of other peaks – other boundries for you to master!
So that covers in short the difference between the lowlanders' and highlanders' feeling of freedom. But what about the sea? Well, I think the real freedom of the sea is that you're free to sail wherever you want – t.i. to whatever port or island you feel like. The sea itself is a treacherous way of transportation with its own dangers, but is still a mervelous site (a bit like the mountains, in a way). On the other hand the open sea doesn't look as diverese if you're at one point or another on it (similar to lowlands). But all in all I think the maritime people have more in common with the highlanders when it comes to that.
Well, that's my take on the theory of freedom being connected with open spaces. But then again, maybe the theory covered the relation between the terrain and the written freedoms. That way the lowlanders probably had more time to put theirs on paper, since they didn't have the urge to "waste" their time experiencing freedom first-hand or were just more afraid of loosing it then the highlanders which were used to boundries. Although …if you think of the Scots or the Swiss …hmmm …makes you think ;)
hook out → going to have a cup of tea and the next day go to the Austrian part of Carinthia …the day after that: the sea! …yea, life is great! :D