Freedom is the recognition of necessity
-Friedrich Engels (1820-1895), German social philosopher
Engels based his statement on Hegel's (1770-1831) philosophy that "in this world freedom presents itself under the shape of necessity." Both forms clearly tell us that if you want to be free, recognize what is necessary. Looking at it in the context of social reforms that are being debated in many places, one can see that if only one recognizes what we *really* need or should be doing, it will set us free.
In particular, when it comes to traditions, no matter how longstanding these are, if one asks the following questions: "do we need these traditions? Are they relevant for our lives?" and then based on the answer chooses to keep only those that survive, we will be able to live a fuller life. More importantly, we will be able to let others lead a more fuller life as well, since many traditions also affect people around us whether they like it or not.
Just like the traditions of "sati", "bal-vivah" are gone (legally) so also should many other which undervalue the life of others.
To be free, do only those things you can reason as being meaningful. More importantly, do not let others do unto you what you think is not meaningful.