A quote by Jean de La Fontaine:
“A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it.”
Wow. I heard this quote the other day and it whacked me with its powerful truth. I have always believed that our destiny is already planned out for us. Not to say that we can’t alter the course and choose just how we arrive at that destination but no matter how we get there and no matter when we end up there, it is where we were always meant to be.
Some folks think destiny and fate are different. I don’t. But it made me look deeper into the definitions of both.
Destiny: what happens in the future: the things that someone or something will experience in the future; a power that is believed to control what happens in the future; a predetermined course of events often held to be an irresistible power
Fate: a power that is believed to control what happens in the future;the things that will happen to a person or thing; the future that someone or something will have; the will or principle or determining cause by which things in general are believed to come to be as they are or events to happen as they do: Destiny
So you see, destiny or fate, either term can be used. I look at my own life and all that’s happened to me. It hasn’t all been good, that’s for sure. Some of the really bad times and the really bad people that came into my life were all supposed to be there, I’m convinced. For example, in one situation, I met a person who destroyed my life for a while. When I look back on how we met, I realize it was orchestrated by unseen forces. I was in a building I had never been in and really had no need to ever be in but for this one appointment. He was sitting on a bench when I walked by, our eyes met and we shared a flirty smile. And I continued on my way. But then, the person I had the appointment with was running late and his office was locked up, the class that this guy was in let out early because the professor didn’t show up and it just so happened to be right next to the closed office where I was standing, waiting. He came out and there I was. My fate was sealed in that very moment. And the lessons I was to learn were really big ones, like the TRUST YOUR GUT lessons, and they would only come to me after the destruction.
I had looked back years after and realized that something told me, when he asked for my number, a little gnawing in my gut said there was something not quite right, something was off with this guy. But since I couldn’t put my finger on it, I dismissed it. And I believe I was supposed to dismiss it, for it was after this situation ended that I had the realization that my gut instinct was to be trusted next time. (And I have trusted my gut ever since). And looking back, when our involvement started, there were so many signs, so many obvious signs that I completely overlooked. I saw all the signs but I was blind to them. Only later did I see them as red flashing lights.
Out of the rubble came one of life’s really important lessons. After all, trusting your instinct is necessary for survival.
I’ve had people come into my life that were only in it for a short time. People who I thought were going to be life-long friends but some of those associations ended because of me. More lessons learned. Yes, I believe these people were supposed to come into my life specifically so I could learn and grow to become a better person, because it was due to my own shortcomings that the friendship ended. In one case it was an overreaction and anger that caused the demise of that friendship. It was entirely my fault and it was a bitter pill to swallow because I had valued that specific friendship and I paid the price of losing it. A very valuable lesson resulted and one that, thankfully, I won’t have to learn again.
There will be other lessons for me to learn, for sure. And some of them will inevitably be painful. That is by design. Jean de Lu Fontaine’s quote speaks to just that.
“A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it.”
In my example of the lesson that taught me about my instinctual powers: I could have chosen not to give that guy my number and thus never developed a relationship with him, true. But someone or something else would have come along to teach me the lesson that I was supposed to learn about my gut.
The friendship that I ruined might not have occurred had I not met this person in the first place. However, I was still supposed to learn that lesson so it would have been someone else in a different place and different time perhaps, and that valuable lesson would indeed have been taught regardless.
Our life is a big blueprint of lesson plans. It is a maze of choices and opportunities but all the paths lead to the same outcome: our destiny.
Do you believe Jean de Lu Fontaine’s quote?
Life is a sometimes crazy journey. I suppose that quote does make a lot of sense though I’m trying to think where it can be applied in my own life. I don’t like to regret the past or dwell on mistakes or missed opportunities, but I do like to analyze the story of my life in order to better understand who I am now and how I got here.
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And you’re a better man for analyzing that story. The only past I like to dwell on is the good time past. I do spend a lot of time in nostalgic thought. Of course I was lucky and had a great past, full of fun and full of laughter. I just aim to make my present as good so that when I look back on these days they can be with a smile…
I totally believe this quote. Why do we always expect our destiny to be a happy one. It’s our destiny for some it is all good, for others a mix of good and bad. However I do think we make choices along the way which can change our futures.
Great quote and thought provoking post.
Thanks Tric. Yeah, the roads to most destinies are a bag of mixed nuts; some you like, some you don’t, but they’re in the mix nonetheless… Glad you liked the quote!
This also reminds me of the John Lennon quote – “Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” Yes – I agree, and as you so eloquently stated, it’s because we are here to learn specific lessons, and those lessons will happen whether or not we try to avoid them. If not with one person, then with another. And the sooner we learn the lesson, the better – the less we will need to repeat it. But then there will be other lessons. So I’m not sure how specific “destiny” or “fate” are – but we are here to learn lessons. I often wonder what would have happened if I had made other choices in my life. How would my life have turned out if I had stayed in New York, or didn’t marry my first husband, or studied a different profession – all of which I could easily have chosen to do. But I think little of that matters – it would simply be different, not better or worse, and the same lessons would come up for me, those which I need to learn here on earth. Great, though-provoking post! 🙂
Yes! You got it. Absolutely. Love what you said about when you think What If you would’ve stay in NY or not married your first husband, etc. LOVE your take that life would not be any better or any worse, just different. YES!!! And I love the John Lennon quote. So true! Thanks Lynn.
Yes, I believe in this quote too.
I do alse prefer to look back at only the positive memories, the other were just lessons to learn.
I do also believe, that we are here to learn, why else?
Our destiny are not given in front, I think, but by experience we need to learn less of same kind, for each new lesson.
Great post 🙂
Thanks Irene! Yes, we are definitely here to learn. Some lessons I’ve had to re-live over and over because I didn’t get it the first time but as I became more aware and when I realized I was in a teaching moment, I took note and said “Lesson learned. Thank you.” 🙂
That quote actually makes a lot of sense. I believe we each have our lessons and if we don’t learn them from one way on the path then for sure it will show somewhere else. Are lessons needed to be learned the same the thing as fate? I don’t maybe they’re the same thing but just different words. Either way, I think that’s a really powerful quote and this was a powerful post! Thanks Michele ❤
Thanks Renata! Sometimes I get to the point and say “How many more lessons do I need to learn here??” and then comes another. But they all lead us to our next phase in life, our next path so I guess the forward movement is good, yeah?
Forward movement is always good 🙂
I like this one, and how well I remember.. also I love the one of Luca and the buckwheatâ¦ Love you.. Iâm going to do some work and keep busy.. XOXOXOX mOM