Pure Unadulterated Cardboard
29 June, 2002 :: 7:12 a.m.
Is it contradictory for a Christian to believe in fate? I'm not a Christian and I don't really buy into fate, but this popped into my head and I couldn't figure it out. The reason I ask is that it seems to me, in order to believe in fate you would have to believe in some God-like entity that sat around mapping out our entire lives for us...I mean it would have to be a sentient being that plotted the course of our lives if everything is predestined, wouldn't it? But, Christians believe that God gave us free will and if we have free will that would seem to imply that we have the power to make our own choices and direct our own lives and thus fate would not enter into the equation. That's what it seems like to me anyway.
The thing about fate is that, while I don't buy into it, there are things that happen in life that seem too much to be just chance. You meet one person and while it may seem insignificant at the time, by knowing that person you are led to meeting other people who may have a huge significance in your life and you know you probably wouldn't have come across this person otherwise and so it seems like it must have been fated for you to meet this person that led you to this other person.
Like Pat for instance...I can honestly say I would have never met Pat had I not gone out with Char because Char pushed me to get into school at the time I did and I met Pat at orientation...now I can't imagine my life without having Pat to talk to. I may have ended up in school at some point by myself, but probably not the semester that I started...had I not met Pat at orientation, we would not have become roommates and friends...if I had just run into him in a class, we probably wouldn't have gotten to know each other since he thought I wanted to kill him when we first met and I also thought I might end up wanting to kill him. So chances are a meeting on campus would not have led to friendship...now I can also say that had I not dated Jen, I never would have met Char because I would not have been working at wal-mart...I wouldn't have met Jen had I not worked at McDonald's the first year after high school...I wouldn't have worked at McDonald's my first year after high school had I had my shit together and been a better student and gotten the grades I could have easily gotten had I put forth any effort in school (note: it's not like I was a horrible student, I was still like 36 out of 137 or something like that without doing any work unless it was really easy or for Mr. Stahler who is the only teacher I had in high school that I respected and wanted to do well for...ah he would be so proud of my grammar and sentence structure if he could see this now).
I think in a lot of ways it would be a lot easier to believe in fate. To believe in fate is basically to equate (good god I need to go back to school...I wanted to make equate equivalate) yourself with a character in a novel. You have no control because someone else is writing the story and, as a character in the story, you have no way to skip ahead and see what's coming. You kill someone, cheat on your lover, abuse your children...hey you aren't a bad person, someone else determined that you were going to do these things. Always broke? Whoever is writing the story decided to dick you over while they write a fantastic life for P. Diddy of all people. He can do anything and get away with it because the author of this story has chosen for it to work out that way. Meanwhile you can't toss a gum wrapper on the ground without getting fined...stupid bastard fate writer. So if you believe in fate, you can pretty much coast through life maybe being bitter at the storyline that's been written for you, but otherwise pretty relaxed knowing that nothing is under your control so you can just go through your day not thinking about anything because it won't matter anyway. Now if only all the decent people of the world would wake up one day to find that the writer had erased what he'd written so far and suddenly you are all millionaires without a care in the world and a great family life and diseases like AIDS and cancer only strike those who do bad things...not that it's their fault they do bad things, just if someone has to do the bad, they also get the bad...
Is there anyway to talk to the guy writing this draft of life? And how many writers are there? I mean if fate is real, there are a shit ton of people on this planet and if you have to write out all the minute details of their lives...woooo...come to think of it, that pretty much cancels out the idea of fate because who the hell would want to take the time to do all of that?
So does this mean I believe in God in the sense of God in the Christian Bible? No. I believe in an interwoven universe where maybe there are certain important things woven into the fabric of our lives (...cotton, the fabric of our lives...) that are mixed with a fair amount of randomness to keep things interesting...and I believe that we are all connected to one another and to the earth and other species of life that inhabit it, but I don't believe in any particular organized religion. I'm just trying to do the best I can and not screw things up too majorly. I'm hoping that at the end of my life, the good account is in the black.