The problem with the doctrine of free will is simple – it is not about freedom at all. To begin with, if God grants man free will, then whatever freedom resides within it emanates from God, not man. Secondly, God determines the scope and range of choice to which free will may be applied. On the one side is the good choice to abide by God’s law and commands; on the other side, rejecting this law and embracing evil. Thus, the free will choice essentially boils down to obeying God’s law and commands . . . or else.
The free will doctrine makes man accountable for his choices between good and evil within the context of God’s laws and commands. It places the onus of such choices on man while simultaneously exempting God from all accountability. The doctrine of free will provides man the “freedom” to be the offender while simultaneously relieving God of all responsibility for evil choices. Man’s free will choice to be a transgressor of divine law also justifies God’s role as a punisher of divine law transgressions.
In simplest terms, the free will doctrine is God adopting a “my way or the highway” framework of freedom. Use the free will I provided to do what I command, and all will be well. Use the free will I provided to reject My commands, and all will be lost.
Seen this way, the free will choice to obey God’s law and command becomes a matter of necessity. Man needs to choose the good option God has provided or else face the consequences. This need to choose the Good – this necessity inherent within the free will choice – does not emanate from within man but is externally imposed by God. As such, it does little more than ask a man to adhere to or fulfill a given law or command, leaving no space for creativity or a creative act.
The free will doctrine reduces man to a mere instrument in the fulfillment of God’s law. It lacks all spiritual dynamism and ultimately relegates freedom to the level of submission.
True spiritual freedom does not reside within the framework of the free will doctrine. True spiritual freedom is not about choosing between good and evil but knowing what constitutes authentic creative alignment and harmony with God and Creation.
True spiritual freedom liberates from the necessity of having to choose. Spiritual freedom is not about agonizing over externally imposed, given good and evil choices; it is about internally knowing what good is and doing/thinking that. The need to choose never enters the picture.
Freedom is not and cannot be reduced to the free will doctrine of merely choosing between external, given choices. If it is, it becomes a burden that diminishes man to alevel of “submitting to Good.”
Man is free when he doesn’t have to choose; when he knows that what he is thinking and doing is aligned with God and Creation. How does he know that what he is thinking and doing is good? When he applies his freedom to loving God, and it brings forth creativity.