Evolving a Fate

Depending upon your preference in belief about predetermination you will either be susceptible to the notion of fate or not. In some cultures, fate is more acceptable, in others, people don’t like the notion. Those who consider themselves masters of their own destiny may find it a conceptual anathema. In Islam, if God wills it, is a regular parlance. The hand of destiny might help to win a football world cup. Colloquially people still refer to fate and we have the star-crossed lovers as a literary theme. My own personal belief is that when each of us are born we have a fate to fulfil. And the sum over all fates, each successive lifetime, comprises our ongoing destiny as an evolving being. We can either evolve our fate or struggle against it. How we evolve that fate is dependent upon the contextual and circumstantial conditions we find ourselves in. Some aspects of a fate are possible, others are not. Fate is not rigid hard and fast, it is more of a thematic flavour, a set of life-lessons we need to learn. Fates interact, and it is the interaction of these fates which determines the level of possibility. If you don’t evolve your fate it may not be possible for me to evolve mine and vice versa.

Fate then can approach a node at which a life can either go one way or another. The broad lessons to be learned remain the same, the means and colour of the lessons changes, at these nodes. My life was on one trajectory and heading in a particular direction, then suddenly it changed direction. The people around me and our interaction made it impossible for my fate to continue to evolve in the direction it was then heading. Over the summer I tested to see if a remnant of that aspect of fate was possible, it isn’t or does not look to be. Because that aspect of fate cannot now be evolved, all the interdependencies are also impossible. I cannot now manifest anything pertaining to that part of fate and there are fateful consequences arising from this lack of manifestation. A part of my potential cannot be realised, made real. It is nobody’s fault per se, it just simply is what it is.

As things stand it looks like I am going to go back to tutoring, blogging and self-publishing. This is what looks to be currently fated for me. I have done a complete life review and can see the hand of fate at work, there. I currently have no long-distance sight as to what my fate comprises. I have a mild hypothesis that this is because I was meant to die of cancer and now that I haven’t, there isn’t much left on my dance card. The surgical intervention, changed the course of my fate. It is only a mild hypothesis. Fate has many quirks and only time will tell, time is a good story teller after all, one of the best.

Having cued up this notion of fate here are some questions:

What is my best guess at the life lessons I incarnated so as to learn?

What does the broad scope of my fate so far, look like?

Am I cooperating with my fate or seeking to avoid it?

Fate and Destiny

Modern western thinking is not overly fond of fate apart from in a metaphorical sense, and destiny is the stuff of people who deem themselves {or are deemed} to be heroes or leaders. If fate is real and operative without any flexibility, then I am exactly where I am meant to be this morning. It is fated thus. I made, and other people helped me make, each decision tiny or otherwise, which brought me to this. At no point could there have been any intervention which would have led me away from here and now. In a similar frame, if you find yourself reading this, then you are fated to be doing so. To the western mind, such thinking is uncomfortable. It doesn’t excuse but does suggest an intricate interdependency of life trajectories. If there is no choice, then there is no responsibility. If there is some choice then you, in one way or another, are partially responsible for me being here. This is another way of saying dependent origination and dependent arising.

Though we might sing:

Que sera, sera
Whatever will be will be
The future’s not ours to see
Que sera, sera

in the bath, not many subscribe fully to the sentiment, though this kind of thinking can go a long way to easing stress-bunny-world. Fate as a concept can ease fear, it can also cause recklessness. Where each individual lies on the spectrum of belief apropos fate, is up to them. It could be written in the stars.

To my view fate is but the sum or the integral over all karma. There is some flexibility for fate cannot be entirely exact, timed or prescribed. There has to be a little chaos in the universe, otherwise there is not a lot of point to it. This means that we each contribute to the fate of each other. The size of that contribution is in proportion to relational proximity. It depends upon the amount of time shared. If one has clarity it is relatively easy to highlight life changing moments. The removal of a tumour is a simple example, by having the tumour removed the probability of me living has increased. But who knows, should it be fated otherwise, I could pop my clogs on the way to Waitrose tomorrow morning. My allotted span is over and that is that. As a human, with the help of others, I would have been resisting my fate to die. The universe may not like this and decide to enforce my fate. Anyway it has been a learning experience and perhaps that was fated for me.

Trying to follow all the threads of possibilities in any life is next to impossible, one can follow the key ones to nodes wherein the whole direction of a life changes, and by extension those related to that life. One person in making a decision can, like Amélie, set off a whole chain reaction in the lives of others. And often it is the little things which can be the spark, rather it is the sum of little things which add up. One may not know beforehand when one is doing something significantly life altering, only in retrospect may this become apparent.

In some cultures there is an “if God wills it” mentality and I have over the years enjoyed conversations about this, obviously God had willed it that we should converse thus. If you are a control junkie the idea that some {possibly benign} Being decides your life outcomes, is not comfortable. That is until you relax about it, then it can be fun.

Fate, if it exists, can require that you face certain challenges, that you learn the things you need to learn, irrespective of whether you are keen on so doing.

So here are some simple questions:

What has drawn you here to this blog?

Was it random?

Are you up to no good?

Or did fate have a hand?

What is My Purpose?

This profound question does not enter the minds of all. Perhaps the related question; “what is the meaning of life, of all this?”, does. Should despair visit questions can arise. They may pass without answer or they may grind away for hours, days or weeks. And then maybe one gets on with all the hectic business of living. Yet without a sense of purpose and/or meaning life can be simply “going through the motions”, a kind of meandering in which there may or may not be pleasure. There can be a sense of futility, of ennui and sameness. Perhaps the drudge has a few twinkles; holidays to far flung places, a new car or a shiny TV. Each Monday the hamster wheel beckons.

People may see their purpose in life as their career and some careers do have vocation. Others are more monetary and status in orientation. The career can be a function in life. One functions as a banker, a lawyer or a builder. There may be satisfaction in a job well done. And even should there be a vocation not all vocations come with a sense of purpose, a raison d’être. Without a purpose there is less of a foundation to life and life can therefore sag under the weight of it all. With a purpose, challenges are more easily faced, because there is a core, something to fall back upon when times are hard.

Unless you are unusual it is unlikely that you have a fixed overarching purpose throughout an entire life. That purpose may evolve as you do. That is with the exception of perhaps a common purpose, which I might speculate as being; “the purpose of life is to learn”. Holding this as a hypothetical purpose can aid in times of need or struggle. It can make sense when all else fails, when the odds are against you. Such a simple thing, has power to it. And hopefully with learning comes some evolution of one as a being. This does not sound so bad as a life goal, a life purpose. It covers a whole bunch of stuff, it does not require a God or a religion. It isn’t predicated or coloured. There are no fixed outcomes or metrics, there are simply learning and evolution. You don’t have to get anywhere, just keep going, that is all.

What an individuating purpose is may differ from the common one. Some are drawn to learn what it means to lead, others are drawn to teach, some are drawn to building houses. We all have a function in life and that can indeed be a purpose, or give a sense of purpose.

Life can come in phases. For example, we have a phase in which we learn at school, we may then have a phase in which we apply and a phase in which we rest and perhaps take stock of a life thus far. If we have children, we may have ~ two-decade long phase of parenthood. At each phase our purpose in the material world may differ, our function definitely does.

Maybe we have a sense of what we are meant to be doing in life. If we live close to what we are meant to be doing, life will have meaning because it is meant to be. Perhaps this is a surreptitious means of introducing fate. If one evolves a fate then that is meant to be, ergo it has meaning. But the concept of fate is not to everyone’s taste.

The question remains; “what is my purpose in life?” It is a good one and should you find some provisional answers, the world will have more meaning and seem to be much less of a struggle. There will be reserves in you which you had hitherto not suspected.