It is tempting to imagine ourselves flailing about helplessly in a chaotic world, subject to the whims of fate, but aside from the dramatic situation this image paints, it is actually not representative of actual reality and we get into trouble when we start adopting this worldview due to constant exposure to movies and tv series made for entertainment–great stories of course, but we must not confuse stories with real life.

One of the central tenets of writing fiction is the existence of conflict and this is what makes stories gripping and entertaining.  Unless one is seeking self-punishment, we do not and should not thrive on having constant conflict in our lives.  What makes for great viewing is not what makes for a great life–which revolves around harmony.  The minute life imitates art, and we feel that we are subject to the machinations of a grand invisible storyteller, we must get a grip on ourselves.

It is true that many–or even, most–things in life are out of our control, but we must not lose sight of the fact that despite that, there are still several, if not many, things which are in our control.  We still have a say and a responsibility about how to conduct our life, and these are reflected through our choices.  The existence of choices and cognitive decision making abilities confer self-determination upon us to this extent.  Inasmuch as we cannot be 100% in control, we are still able to be proactive and be able to direct our lives, more than we would like to admit.

Perhaps the circumstances we find ourselves in are not easy to alter, but every moment we can choose to plant good seeds which will yield better karmic fruit in the future–instant gratification is not a part of this equation.  We can choose at every moment to find a way to improve ourselves–attempting to be kinder and more compassionate at every turn–without allowing ourselves to be taken advantage of nor inadvertently encourage unhealthy behaviours in others and in ourselves–so that we can learn to enjoy what it is to be truly human.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

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