Stations On The Way To Freedom

The following is a long quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s book Ethics. It continues to move me deeply.


If you set out to seek freedom, you must learn before all things

Mastery over sense and soul, lest your wayward desirings,

Lest your undisciplined members lead you now this way, now that way.

Chaste be your mind and your body, and subject to you and obedient,

Serving solely to seek their appointed goal and objective.

None learns the secret of freedom save only by way of control.


Do and dare what is right, not swayed by the whim of the moment.

Bravely take hold of the real, not dallying now with what might be.

Not in the flight of ideas but only in action is freedom.

Make up your mind and come out into the tempest of living.

God’s command is enough and your faith in him to sustain you.

Then at last freedom will welcome your spirit amid great rejoicing.


See what a transformation! These hands so active and powerful

Now are tied, and alone and fainting, you see where your work ends.

Yet you are confident still, and gladly commit what is rightful

Into a stronger hand, and say that you are contented.

You were free from a moment of bliss, then you yielded your freedom

Into the hands of God, that he might perfect it in glory.


Come now, highest of feasts on the way to freedom eternal,

Death, strike off the fetters, break down the walls that oppress us,

Our bedazzled souls and our ephemeral body,

That we may see at last the sight which here was not vouchsafed us.

Freedom, we sought you long in discipline, action, suffering.

Now as we die we see you and know you at last, face to face.

I Am Ashish Joy