Lady Luck and Fate


I received some very bad news this morning, on top of receiving other bad news earlier this week.  After dealing with the fallout from the news, the event sort of got me thinking about chance, and luck, and fate.  And I have no idea if there’s actually going to be a point to this post–it may just be one long ramble of disjointed ideas, kind of representative of the state of my mind at the moment.

In one of my classes this last semester, the concept of fate and luck were discussed a little bit.  The Romans and the Greeks had Fortune and the Fates.  In another class, we discussed a bit about the Nordic idea of the Norns as well, with Skuld and Verdandi and Urd.  All of these ideas affected the lives of the mortals in one way or another, either by a brief touch that happened at random (Fortune), or by spinning out a person’s destiny and life (the Fates), or by representing Time and events in Time (the Norns). The Norns, unlike the Fates, didn’t spin out the thread of a person’s life, but were almost like subordinates of Time themselves.  They could see, and pronounce what they saw, but they couldn’t necessarily control what was seen for the future, or the present, or change the past.  The Fates, too, while very powerful goddesses, didn’t really control what they spun out for a person.  And Fortune is pretty much a random force at work.  All of which leads to the idea that while the Fates certainly woudl influence the lives of Man, they don’t truly control those lives, and so something else beyond the Fates is at work that influences Fate which influences Man.

Was it Fate that this would happen to me, today, and that it would be a negative event?  Or was it chance that my school made a mistake?  Or is there no real reason for it, just an event in Time that will pass.  I don’t know.  I choose to believe that there is a reason for everything under the sun, even if we don’t know what that reason is.  Even if we never figure out what that reason is and what happened seems like a random blip on the radar screen.  But I have to believe that everything happens for a reason, and everything will work out as it is supposed to.  So I suppose I believe more in Fate than I do in Chance or Fortune.  In a way, it’s easier to believe in Fate of some kind than it is to believe in Chance and Fortune–believing in the latter would set up the idea that everything is completely random and order doesn’t really exist, which is a very uncomfortable idea for most people.  Maybe it’s a part of the human condition, the need not only to believe in something greater than oneself (whatever deity or religion or cosmic order that may be), but also to naturally lean toward believing in order and Fate.

Sorry if this really was as disjointed as I think it is.  Bad news piled on bad news does not a happy Sita make.

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One response to “Lady Luck and Fate

  1. I find that with every misfortune that occurs, I get pushed to accomplish or achieve something even better. Recently I went to an interview for a really, really sweet job – and the interviewer totally loved me – until someone showed up with a resume at least twice as impressive as mine. This was an interview I had put hours of work into, studying the companies history, current projects, technologies they were into and so forth.

    Afterwards, I was bummed. Then I decided to improve my resume, and not even 48 hours later, I had built an amazing website and already greatly improved my resume as well as my personal knowledge. If I hadn’t bombed that interview, I wouldn’t have had a reason or drive to do it, it is only because I failed at first that later I could succeed.

    It is my belief (and purely mine, not based on history or legend or such, simply personal experience) that fate and life are like gravity and a ball. Gravity will cause a ball to follow a certain path, filled with ups and downs and all different sorts of turns, and while the ball with enough force could resist this path, it would only slow down progress. Sometimes it’s hard to see what we gain when we lose everything, but for everything lost there is indeed something gained.

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