3 Days before Leaving; Do You Believe in Fate? Destiny?
In 3 days I’ll hit the road again. I kind of know where I’m going and I kinda don’t. I’m hoping to stop in Lindsborg, Kansas to see an old friend of mine that I hadn’t seen in over twenty years. Lindsborg’s nickname is Little Sweden USA because it was founded by Swedish Immigrants and the language and traditions continue there to this day. It also was also the location of my first college teaching post at Bethany College and I really enjoyed it. My second stop will be in Peoria to visit with a woman Facebook friend that I had met, in person, at the beginning of my trip. Some mysteries need to be cleared up there. When I left Georgia on May 9th I hadn’t planned to stop at either of these places on the way back. That’s the way I think fate/destiny works. But you have to trust it, go with it.
What do you think about fate or destiny? Call it whatever you want to – God’s will, the Tao, the Universe, Synchronicity, Yuanfen? Have things happened in your life that seem as though they were meant to have happened? People you met, maybe married. Schools you went to. Books that came to you at certain times of your life? Events that somehow changed the trajectory of your life?
Were these just coincidences? And are coincidences, as some would say, just God’s way of remaining anonymous.
And where does free will fit into all of this? What does it mean to “follow your heart”? What does it mean to “trust”? To let go? We worry so much about what the future might bring; which path we should take.
Tough questions. Some Christians believe that all will be well if we seek first the Kingdom. Taoist, Buddhist and Stoic suggest “going with the flow” but not in some apathetic, hippy way. The poet Rilke has this advice for us who are struggling with our innermost questions. Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.
Where will I ride? What roads will I take? Will I make it to these destinations or will others suddenly appear and beckon me? And what about you?