I don’t think of Fate much, not much at all. But Fate likely weighs on many minds and shoulders. Besides, Fate’s gotten bad press of late — well, actually, since the Renaissance.
The notion of whether we have free reign over our Earth-density lives or whether we’re pawns on a chessboard has plagued human history almost as long as there has been human history.
For all the bum wrap that Fate gets — I mean, who wants to feel like they’re puppets or just have no real say in how life unfolds — yet Fate is still a necessary piece in the way that life works.
Which is to say that, with Fate and free will, it’s not one or the other. Actually the words of Amos (not the prophet but the big-wig star of the Amos & Andy Show, first TV series about blacks) come to mind: “Andy, a wife is like your liver: You can’t live with her and you can’t live without her.” Fate is like that.
Fate and free will are two poles with an astounding amount of human living in between.
In any question of a large, shall I say philosophic, nature, it’s always where one stands — as in perspective to such a question — that determines the response. While one’s response does not necessarily constitute the ‘right’ answer, it’s never the ‘wrong’ answer — because, from Fate’s p.o.v., that’s right where one is supposed to be.
Here’s a story that, when I first heard it, really flipped my perspective: A man and woman enter the forest by a path and, while on the third bend, wonder, “Where does this path go?” If you were one of them, you’d wonder the same thing: Where’s does this path lead? Now, imagine that you’re in a helicopter flying over this forest. You see the path into the forest and its many bends and the path exiting the trees. You are no longer asking where the path goes because you are in full view of its beginning, middle and end. Your helicopter point-of-view is now, “The path isn’t going anywhere. I see its entirety: It just is.”
So…how far back we stand when asking a deep question determines our perspective — which is everything.
Fate depends on our point of view and how expansive it is. Or how deep it is, for the possibility of distance exists equally for expanding outwards, getting more and more vast, and going within, getting more and more concentrated.
Trust is the turf of Fate.
Enjoy your fate. If you just endure it, there may be some gain, but the rising issue(s) will return, and return, until there is in you no reaction — and you understand the benefit of its having arisen in the first place.
We can get a feel for Fate as it rose in ancient Greece, the Moirae being the three goddesses of Fate. Each personifying a portion of a soul’s inescapable destiny, together they assigned to individuals the fate due them, given each soul’s unique schema of life. Klotho, the “Spinner,” spun the thread of life at a person’s birth, then in accord with the counsel of gods gave direction to that soul’s actions; Lakhesis, the “Apportioner of Lots,” measured the length of that thread, while Atropos, “She who cannot be turned,” cut the thread appropriately. Their work was overseen by Zeus Moiragetes, the god of Fate, who could save persons from their fate, signifying that fate could be flexible. The Fates neither micro-managed nor acted absolutely, for an individual was allowed to plead on his/her own behalf and perhaps sway the outcome. The Fates act together as ‘the goddesses of death’ when one’s fate was completed. The Moirai, understood to be old and ugly and even lame, were sternly independent, with even the other gods, including Zeus himself, having to submit to their rulings. Their offices, appropriated by the Romans under different names, continued until the 4th century.
Because the gods saw from a celestial perspective, such a ‘distance’ meant they knew the future and, on behalf of justice to each soul, could justly parse out of the road of a given soul’s destiny.
The philosophical conundrum — If a soul successfully pleads for his/her fate to be altered, is such a one destined to make such a plea? — clarifies with this notion of distance, which equates with degrees of lessening subjectivity and changeability. Ergo, seeing everything clearly from a non-changing perspective would mean complete knowledge of the future and of a soul’s destiny.
Every soul, of course, has a destiny, yet we often, in dramatic events of a mysterious nature, are amazed to consider that such a scenario was ‘destined.’ While certain individuals — great generals or scientists or public figures, for example — seem so clearly to have a destiny, every life is under the sway of heaven. To the extent a soul is in harmony with such a divine ‘sway’ correlates highly with the fortuitousness of a given lifetime.