This post contains:
- An ancient Greek idea that could potentially change your life,
- the real reason it doesn’t matter if something is true or not, and
- a whole slew of zen ninja demon-slaying monkeys.
Welcome, to my parlor.
Welcome, to my heathen argument for faith.
‘Amor Fati’ is a Latin phrase used in ancient Greece meaning (approximately) ‘love your fate’. Essentially, it is the idea and belief that all things necessarily happen for the good, the nearest modern corollary being: ‘Everything happens for a reason.’
To some, this will already be a recognizable and firmly-entrenched belief. To others, it may smell like a wicker basket chock-full of purple hippie crystal woo-woo. But don’t dismiss it out of hand just yet.
Because beliefs, like many other things, are malleable. They are not set in stone. Our beliefs are subject to our conscious choice. We can literally choose to ‘change our mind’ – a realization which is as terrifying as it is liberating.
And while we can never know for certain if something we believe is objectively true, we can tell whether it is of use in our day-to-day experience. Does believing it make us happier? Does it allow us to live better lives?
So if we are indeed truly free to choose our beliefs then wouldn’t it seem sensible to search out and select those that provide the greatest utility for us?
‘Amor Fati’ fulfuls this criteria in spades because, sincerely making the effort to ‘love one’s fate’ facilitates a far greater degree of acceptance in our lives.
When something unexpected, painful, or unwanted occurs, evaluating it thru the lens and filter of ‘Amor Fati’ allows us to fold the event into the tapestry of our life-experience with far greater grace, ease, and speed and with far less suffering than if we choose the path of repression or denial.
As with everything don’t take my word for it. Try it on for size. Practice first with the little things. Practice early, and practice often so, when the hardier demons rise, spewing fire from the belly of the cracked black earth, they’ll find themselves facing the most fate-loving demon-slaying warrior monkey that you’re capable of being.
I do not claim that this choice will always be easy. Choosing to adopt a belief of this kind requires effort. It requires trust. It requires a kind of… faith.
Personally, I do not identify as religious in any traditional or secular sense but, heathen tho I am, in this case at least…
…I also find myself to be a man of faith.
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