The Power of Attaining Inner Freedom

A reflection of 2019 in the journey of living with full authenticity and unlearning toxic masculinity.

Edric Subur
6 min readJan 30, 2020


2019 was my spiritually richest year yet, abundant of authenticity, people, and love. When I thought of my highlights of the year, I noticed a different pattern in what I considered important and meaningful. Usually, my yearly highlights appeared in the form of accomplishments, new skills or new experiences.

This time, however, my highlights are a lot more inwards, personal and human:

  • Came out as bisexual in front of 200 colleagues, the world and my parents
  • Broke my heart open and learned the value of love at Burning Man
  • Found and built my solid support system
  • Cooked for 40 people and raised S$11K for Charity water for my birthday
  • Funded a trip to Japan for my mom (and learned Japanese in between)
  • Made an unplanned trip to South America twice (and learned Spanish in between)

If I were to give 2019 a theme, it will be untethered. My soul is set free, to connect deeply with my truest self and by doing so, deeply with others and the world.

Towards the end of the year, I had an epiphany. I realized I had been idolizing a toxic image of masculinity; the alpha male devoid of expression, playfulness, and love. I still remember making a conscious effort not to smile too much or send too many “haha”s or show my weakness or suppress my inner child so I can look cool like the picture of brooding charismatic grown-up man the society always plants in my head.

Temple Burn on my last day at Burning Man 2019

At Burning Man, I tasted the freedom and joy of living with full authenticity and being genuinely loved for just being me, the real man I am. I swore to live by my truths ever since. So I brought that energy back with me to the default world and proudly embrace my feminine energy, my quirks, my inner child. I learned that it’s okay to ask for help, to show kindness, to apologize first, to say I love you without expecting the word…