Fate vs Free Will
1 the development of events beyond a person’s control, regarded as determined by a supernatural power : fate decided his course for him | his injury is a cruel twist of fate.
• the course of someone’s life, or the outcome of a particular situation for someone or something, seen as beyond their control : he suffered the same fate as his companion.
the power of acting without the constraint of necessity or fate; the ability to act at one’s own discretion.
This debate is based on the assumptions that (i) God exists, (ii) God is the preserver of order and goodness, and (iii) God is omnipotent. (If you have any reservations at this stage itself, go read the P.S.)
When God created this world, did he make us as puppets with a string tied or did he leave us to learn and act on our own? This question has perturbed me since long, and never have I been able to get to a convincing victory of one over the other. I tend to believe that the argument that everything is pre-determined is a bit hard to digest. Since, why would God then script the existence of evil in the world. Why would God plot gruesome murders and assassinations? Because all of this is hard to believe, I conclude that ‘fate’ in totality cannot be acting.
For God, all of us are equal or have been equal up to some point in time. But now, we are no more equals. Otherwise, why would someone live in a posh bungalow and another sleep on the pavements, under the same sky, on the same earth? Tell me, why this disparity? Why does somebody live in gloom while another basks in glory? Maybe this can be justified by our ‘karma’ or past actions affecting the future. If we take karma into the picture, then we already have bid adieu to the concept of absolute fate.
Now, however if God had made us completely free, then there would be no ‘divine interventions’ and man would wreak havoc everywhere. Since God is omnipotent, why would He/She not intervene if something evil is going about, why would He/She be a mute spectator. So there ends the story of absolute free will.
Thus, as always prevalent in this Universe we do not live in a binary world, we instead have to follow a middle path (weighted average a.k.a. GPA ) , with God being the one who decides when which one dominates – fate or free will!
P.S. The views expressed by the author are personal and are not to be questioned on grounds like questionability of the ‘existence’ of God.