Fromm speaks of two types of freedom. Positive and Negative - negative freedoms can be characterized as ‘freedom from’ while positive freedom can be translated as ‘freedom to’.

In feudal times, simply by being born, you emerged into a fixed identity construct. You were born into a particular family within a particular clan or village with a particular class.

This tribe had a religion, and your relationship with that religion and your deity was not individual but accessed through intermediaries—the village priest, witch doctor, or soothsayer.

Beyond that, you might have the identity of your occupation, which was often just as hereditary as the color of your eyes, and nationalistic pride was a birthright.

What you lacked, was any individual sway in changing those things. In order to petition God, you had to visit a medium.

To find a wife or husband you would usually rely on your parents or theirs. You were born into a life that was built for you before you had even left the womb.

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