Categories
Food For Thought life

Let’s talk about: Fate

In the past couple of years, my life has been coming full circle. Doors that were closing and opening that didn’t make sense in the moment began making sense with time upon self reflection and conversations with others. Within the past four or five years, I have had various thoughts of, “Well if this didn’t happen, this wouldn’t have happened,” or “It’s a good thing this didn’t happen because, knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t have been able to execute or appreciate it.” It really can be a blessing when we don’t get what we think we want. This sort of realization has helped me become more confident and secure in my decisions. It has further affirmed my belief in the universe and that almost everything, if not everything, happens for a reason.

First, I want to emphasize that I say almost everything because few things are accurate and applicable 100% of the time. I also want to add that the reason some things occur may not always have a spiritual, philosophical, or deeper meaning attached to it. Sometimes you really are in the wrong place at the wrong time. Sometimes you make a disadvantageous choice. Some people take advantage. Sometimes the reason for an event occurring has nothing to do with you and is instead a consequence of someone else’s actions. However, I do believe in some version of fate or destiny. I believe that some occurrences just happen to align perfectly, whether for a higher purpose or the purpose we assign ourselves. 

Fate is defined by Google as “a development of events beyond a person’s control.” I see fate more as a destination one can end up experiencing and passing by than a driving force that actively dabbles in our lives. Too many tragic events occur for me to feel comfortable saying every single thing that happens is justified because of fate for a higher purpose. I don’t believe people’s fates are sealed and can be unchanged. Free will, the idea that we can do whatever we want, is said to exist, though some think it’s an illusion. I think that we have free will because we are not consciously forced into every aspect of our lives. For the most part, day to day, we are theoretically free to choose what we eat, where we go, what we wear, and what we do. However, the options we have are are not vast because of societal norms and structures, because of our past decisions, and because of other people and their choices. I believe we are free to select a choice among the options we are given. Maybe the choice we choose is predetermined or inevitable, but theoretically, I think often times no higher entity is actively forcing us there.

So, with the idea that we have free will, we make numerous decisions throughout our lives, all of which have a multiple possibilities. The situations we fall in- where we are born, race, nationality, gender, income levels, our parents, growing up with whoever raises us etc.- and the choices we make lead us to each moment. To me, those series of events and each present moment set up potential for the next moment which has the potential for us to experience a moment of fate.

I see life as a path. I know cliche. But hear me out. You start at the beginning of the path when you are born. You are your own person; that’s why everyone has their own path. Choices are made for you and people influence you. Each major choice and situation that effects who you are, like what high school you attend and the people you encounter, create a new branch and direction for the path that you’re on. When you get older, you start making those bigger decisions regarding who you associate with and how to spend your time. Each of these decisions, including major life events, branches into different possible paths. Once you head down a certain direction on the path, you can’t turn around.

For example, I consider college a major life event. Choosing a major and attending college will inevitably jumpstart how the future will go. I had multiple options for where I wanted to go. That’s multiple branches on the path of life I could’ve chosen. I went towards the direction of school in Vegas, and even if I happened to transfer, I couldn’t take back what I experienced. I couldn’t turn around on the road I was already going down. I would’ve only been able to switch gears from there. The same is true of having a baby. All of the options about how to handle my pregnancy were different roads I could have taken. I chose the path I did.

We make choices and situations occur in the moment. Some of us have no true foresight about how the future will pan out, only a view of how we want it to go. The path you go down is the path you choose, whether consciously or through fault of your own or not.

It’s important to note that I don’t believe everything that happens in life is always or entirely our own fault. As I said, I don’t think fate is sealed. Things happen and we don’t have control over everything. For example, my skin tone and my body type are the way they are. I can’t wish my autoimmune disease or anxiety away. I was born into the family I was born into. Society is the way it is. Even though I could make choices to change my appearance, ease the symptoms regarding my health, or not be around my family, all those qualities about me will always have existed without my choosing. They are what they are. I can only choose how to cope, react, and move forward with them.

Also, we are all interconnected. Our life paths cross those of others daily. Some of the people we encounter can influence us negatively, leading us down a road with consequences we don’t want to experience. Some help guide us to where the universe or even where we want to end up. Some abruptly knock others off the entire path itself. We have the same effects on others as well. We can also hypothetically do whatever we want whenever we want. Nothing is stopping us from anything, except for ourselves and of course the measures we as a society put into place. To me, this could mean we make choices that take us longer to meet our various moments of fate. It means we may never experience a moment of fate.

Because of free will and the uncontrollable, it just makes sense to me that fate is a destination and that one can encounter different moments of fate. I see fate as moments in life that just align perfectly maybe through some guiding force. If you believe in “the one,” in “soulmates,” in having a purpose, or in things being meant to be of happening for a reason, then at least a little part of you believes in fate too.

Side note: I love talking about ideas and theories like this. If you want to talk more about it with me and share your view points, feel free to comment or message me!

Categories
Politics

Let’s Get Serious

Discrimination and oppression are serious problems in America’s history. With Trump being your president, others are made to feel safe in promoting these ideologies of hate and intolerance, supporting Confederate propaganda as if that’s a part of our history that we should be proud of. America is a society that consistently covers up any faults. It appears like the only people who seem to remember America’s shortcomings are the same ones who were and still are oppressed and discriminated against as a consequence of those faults. When people try to have a conversation about how they were and are being mistreated, about America’s problems in the past and present, others start to get hyper-reactive, shutting it down in a way where no one is allowed to have an open and honest conversation. People are so busy trying to distance themselves from wrongdoings and our history, as if that’ll give them some sort of deniable accountability, that they stop listening, walk away, and react without even being educated on the topic in the first place. They spout things they’ve only heard, that they cannot exactly back up or defend.

I used to hate talking about politics and social justice. At first discussing it made me uncomfortable, partly because I worried about learning people in my life, whether acquaintances or friends, discriminate through their beliefs and actions. If you’re for or against tax cuts, it doesn’t really matter to me. Yes I have my opinions but if yours are different that’s your prerogative. However, building a wall to keep people out, telling those immigrants to go home as if someone in your family wasn’t once an immigrant, attempting to control woman, killing black people unarmed in the streets, chanting All Lives Matter, and overall white supremacy; that shit affects people’s lives in an extreme way. Condoning and defending it is something I truly don’t and never will understand, no matter how hard I try.

Some of the most common explanations I have seen for the amount of racism, sexism and other discrimination cases are as follows:

  • It’s just increased as time goes on.
    • False. Because of technology we are able to record things and spread them online. We also live in a time where people seem to be more brave in making their stories known because in some cases people are starting to take action.
  • You can have your beliefs and I can have mine.
    • True, but saying you think apple pie is better than pumpkin pie or your belief or lack thereof in God are way less detrimental than saying you think an entire group of people is harmful for the country. By thinking this way, or supporting someone who does, you are ruining a countless number of lives physically, mentally, and emotionally solely based upon stereotypes and fear. That’s not okay and by thinking it is further proves you are in a place of privilege. Please re-evaluate your beliefs.
  • I’m just being honest.
    • If your beliefs surround the practicing of racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination you have some serious self evaluation to do. Also, please educate yourself. I despise living in a world where I have to deal with others’ consequences of their own ignorance. Just saying.
  • You took it the wrong way.
    • Or, you said something out of pocket. Just because it was acceptable back in the day doesn’t mean and is actually more likely a testament to the fact it’s not okay to say now. If you don’t know, back in the day women couldn’t vote, Japanese people were forced into internment camps, and black people were property. I’d say some traditions and sayings aren’t meant to last.
  • This has nothing to do with race, sex, etc.
    • Maybe it does. Especially if it seems like an exception, especially if it has a history of repeating itself. People point these things out for a reason. Society does a brilliant job of taking jabs at groups and painting them in a certain light in a way you wouldn’t realize until you open your eyes to actually see it.

My biggest pet peeve when it comes to politics and social justice is the “sensitive” copout. People always complain “Those millennials are sensitive. People are so sensitive nowadays. Political correctness ruins jokes. Political correctness sucks.” etc. etc. It’s as if people put blame on other people rather than taking responsibility for their own actions. When stories come out of people’s lives being ruined for saying something racist, homophobic, sexist, etc. people continue to paint them as the victim instead of the perpetrator. Call me heartless, but I don’t feel bad that you received consequences for your actions. By turning a blind eye, you’re essentially telling them what they did is okay. If you see a little kid writing on the the wall with a crayon they’re going to keep writing until you tell them to stop and make it known that it’s not acceptable.

Social justice is something I am passionate about. In daily conversations, partly due to my shyness and partly to avoid being that loud, angry, political black girl, I’ve been known to hold my tongue. Plus, during the times I have pointed something out or given my own opinion, it is often overlooked. Because I started this blog and because it is something I think is super important, if I don’t discuss the injustices I have witnessed, heard about, or experienced I’ll be another person turning a blind eye. This is just my way of saying that I’ll be sharing my viewpoint on controversial topics. My goal is not to alienate and not to persuade, necessarily, but to educate on my perspective, whether different and similar to yours. In that way it will cause you to think about your own beliefs. I like debating  and I like to be educated so if I say something wrong or something you disagree with, let me know and we can discuss. It’s easy to use ignorance as an excuse so I’m here in the hopes to decrease my and other people’s ignorance. Politics and social justice affect everyone. If it is something that makes you uncomfortable, it is proof that it is not discussed openly enough. It serves as more of a reason to have a discussion about it; avoidance is never a beneficial solution.