Are We Really Free
For a long time people believed that their lives were controlled by the gods. What life would be like, each persons position and place, how and when they would die. In Greek and Roman mythology, there was the belief that each persons life was controlled by the three fates, that each persons life was a thread. This thread was not then just a thread of life, but also a thread of fate.
The Greek fates or Mire (Μοίραι) were known as:
Κλωθώ (Klotho) – the spinner of the thread of life;
Λάχεσις (Lachesis) – measured the length of the thread of life;
Άτροπος (Atropos) – was the cutter of the thread of life – the how a person would die and when, by cutting the thread at the designated time.
This idea meant that even though a person may have thought that each choice they made was of their own free will, it was infact already predetermined, it was their fate to make that choice.
All this means that freedom was only an illusion.
In the Matrix
Using that famous film and idea is not original, but we are all familiar with the idea. I’m not referring to the pill concept, but that humanity is infact within a simulated world – Elon Musk seems to believe that there is a possibility of that being real.
This would mean that regardless of any choices we make, those choices have already been determined for us.
For example, me, sitting down and typing the words you are now reading, is all part of the program. Even though I feel and believe that I am writing them with my own free will, the concept would be that I am not – I am simply doing what has already been planned.
That is frightening. It’s frightening because it means we have no control of the direction of our life, regardless of the choices we make. It also means that the cards we are born with are the cards we have, regardless of the changes we make.
But, what if our fate is meant to give us a better life, a life of joy, but we fail to see this?
Opportunity and Serendipity
Some people believe that they never get opportunities. But simply understanding how our mind works, how our subconscious works, it becomes obvious that simply the belief that “we never get opportunities”, becomes a self realisation – because we don’t believe we get opportunities, we fail to see them and fail to act on them. Then we go on to say that we are unlucky, when luck is really a matter of mindset.
People who always seem to come across opportunities are not lucky or fortunate – they are willing to accept and believe that opportunities are always there and they are also willing to act on those opportunities when they appear. They are willing to accept their fears and still do that thing – they ignore the fear and focus on the possible outcome.
Serendipity is an opportunity that appears, that takes you in a direction you hadn’t expected. It is an unexpected gift, something beneficial, something unexpected.
Again, people fail to see these serendipitous occasions because they are so focussed in the direction they are going, becoming blinkered to the peripherals of life and opportunity. Yes, we need to focus on what we want to do with our life, but not so much that we fail to see the chances we are given on the sidelines.
Freedom of Choice
It is a choice whether to change the way we see the world, the way we see life and the direction of our life.
And yet I feel that this brings us back full circle back to the beginning – the thread of fate. With one exception – the possibility that we can choose our fate, alter the twist of that thread, by altering the way we think.
Choosing to think and believe that life is good for us, that we are lucky, to expect opportunities to arise that are beneficial to us, whether to progress or to learn (failure is only a lesson). Deciding to move towards our ideal life and having the courage to act towards it.
You see, this way, even if our fate is sealed, at least we are choosing the good option rather than the option which leads to a lack of joy.
I believe that every single one of us gets the opportunity to follow a path which leads to fulfillment and joy, but fail to realise that life because of fears, including beliefs, that have been installed into us from a young age. The fears of our fathers and mothers, our family, our friends.
It’s not about whether our fate is sealed. It’s about what fate we choose to have.
If you believe in fate, believe in it, at least, for your good.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Now, if the gods took thought for me and what must happen to me, they will have taken thought for my good.
Gladly surrender yourself to Clotho. Let her spin your thread into whatever web she wills.
Photograph from Wikipedia