“Do you ever wonder why things have to turn out the way they do?” ― Nicholas Sparks

I often notice thoughts arise that question my choices throughout life or my current situation. “How did I get here? This is an odd situation that I do not care to be in, nor was it my intention or plan” or “I can’t believe I am actually here, it’s amazing how it’s all worked out”. After noticing these thoughts on several occasions and deliberating on the core idea of our role in the choice process, I had a revelation that I feel is both empowering and overwhelming.

Every single decision and choice that has been made no matter how big or small – conscious or subconscious – has led me to the very present moment I am now experiencing.

You would not be where you are right now – reading this – without every single action or thought throughout your life leading you to this very moment. This can be deeply empowering showing the potential of the un-noticed tiny day to day actions and decisions leading to the whole – the present. This brings up a lot of complex questions about free-will but I will leave that debate for another article!

“Sometimes the slightest things change the directions of our lives, the merest breath of a circumstance, a random moment that connects like a meteorite striking the earth. Lives have swiveled and changed direction on the strength of a chance remark.” ― Bryce Courtenay

If you look throughout your life so far, connecting the dots looking back, more than likely you will notice how last minute – seemingly subconscious – decisions and actions crafted the way for big events and perhaps key turning points in your life. It seems at times we relinquish our control and life ushers forward as if our decision making is futile, and at other times we grasp the present moment with fierce appetite and propel forward in our preferred direction – each producing results. In both respects – life unfolds – you are still conscious and alive but in a new situation. So where you are now, did your role in the choice process make a difference, aren’t you where you are meant to be?

“Everything is determined, the beginning as well as the end, by forces over which we have no control. It is determined for the insect, as well as for the star. Human beings, vegetables, or cosmic dust, we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible piper.” ― Albert Einstein

In an age of distraction, we feel compelled to surrender to every request, do everything at once and strive for the ‘perfect’ life through our supposed power of choice and fear of missing out. Thinking, analyzing and scrutinizing all the outcomes of what could be, placing enormous emphasis on choice, whilst life continues dancing around us. So, does it seem then, that engaging, moving, creating, conversing and sharing are the choices we make subconsciously on a daily basis, but within them lying the power to shape our future with great beauty.

“The things that really change the world, according to Chaos theory, are the tiny things. A butterfly flaps its wings in the Amazonian jungle, and subsequently a storm ravages half of Europe.”― Neil Gaiman

When we try to impose a false sense of control over our lives and current situation, we tend to feel resistance, swimming upstream for seemingly unattainable goals and ideals. Every time you allow your thoughts to become overbearing about potential future choices or past decisions, in searching for meaning or comfort, it’s like attempting to grasp water to no avail. If you relax and lie still, you float and go with the flow. Let go fully.

“The most exquisite paradox… as soon as you give it all up, you can have it all. As long as you want power, you can’t have it. The minute you don’t want power, you’ll have more than you ever dreamed possible.” ― Ram Dass

We are all here together intertwining and co-existing, playing out roles in each others lives. All the complexities and subtleties of our daily interactions and choices all play a part leading to the whole in our individual storylines. Striving for meaning through our ability of creation and legacy building, we come together and wage war together in order for significance, but in the end… it all goes back in the box.

“We’re all just walking each other home.” ― Ram Dass

Maybe…

“Every path is the right path. Everything could’ve been anything else. And it would have just as much meaning.” ― Mr. Nobody

  • Mary Kate

    Nice thoughts in this post. I think the key to escaping determinism, though, is to make ourselves our own guides through life rather than allowing others to shape our path. Determinism implies lack of responsibility, as though, no matter what we do, good or bad, we’ll end up in the same place. I am, ultimately, not the sum of all my choices (or thoughts, or actions). I simply am.

    • Great thoughts Mary… Thanks for reading!

      • Mary Kate

        You’re welcome! 🙂 Any time.

  • Coen

    I like this post because it is basically the problem that I end up with almost every day! (scared of the choices i make, and what choice is the best one? Or a choice were whatever I choose, someone will get hurt)

    But the challange is that if I am convinced that this is the truth, why can’t I just surrender to it? I guess it takes a long time to get the old thoughts and habits out of my subconscious :p.