I've just finished reading Off the Grid, by Nick Rosen, and it has definitely given me food for thought. The main thing I've been thinking about is what "the grid" actually is. The obvious definition is the electrical grid, but as Rosen points out, that definition has been extended to include any public utilities, and even the ecopolitical structure as a whole. In the book, he travels around America talking to people who live off-grid, and for different people that means different things and is prompted by different motives. But what he points out is that these motives can be classified very simply as either fear-based or from "a sense of joy."
What the gas outage experience brought home for me is that I do not want to be dependent for the basics of physical survival and comfort on entities whose primary purpose is to make a profit off me, especially when said entities, and my cooperation with them, are contributing to the illness of the planet. However, I operate in life on the principle that ultimately I can only be enslaved by the grid of my own thoughts, emotions, and corresponding responses, which is why my decision to build off-grid was prompted by a sense of purpose and joy, not a feeling of enslavement.
I'm certainly aware of the ways things are falling apart and the dangers of the world we live in, but I choose not to live in fear, and so I don't give my attention to those things any more than necessary. The freedom of building an off-grid house for me is not so much freedom from a system as freedom to create. It's a subtle but important distinction that makes all the difference in the world.