Thursday, August 16, 2007


Takhdeer (n.) - Fate, Destiny ( in Hindi, Urdu, and Persian)

Do fate and destiny operate under the same definitions? Spare me the definitions in the comments section:

something that unavoidably befalls a person; fortune; lot: It is always his fate to be left behind.

2.the universal principle or ultimate agency by which the order of things is presumably prescribed; the decreed cause of events; time: Fate decreed that they would never meet again.
3.that which is inevitably predetermined; destiny: Death is our ineluctable fate.
4.a prophetic declaration of what must be: The oracle pronounced their fate.
5.death, destruction, or ruin.
6.the Fates, Classical Mythology. the three goddesses of destiny, known to the Greeks as the Moerae and to the Romans as the Parcae.

1.something that is to happen or has happened to a particular person or thing; lot or fortune.
2.the predetermined, usually inevitable or irresistible, course of events.
3.the power or agency that determines the course of events.
4.(initial capital letter) this power personified or represented as a goddess.
5.the Destinies, the Fates.

Was it fate that brought your significant other to you? or was it your destiny that, in lieu of your father's trade (as a doctor) you too would join the same profession, but changed your destiny and became a lawyer?

From a metaphysical standpoint, our essence could represent our destiny - our purpose, but perhaps not our calling. If there should exist such a thing, is completion, or perhaps acceptance, and then the possible denial of it, relevant?

Is it simply a poetic metaphor?

Is destiny simply the end we place before ourselves?


stevo said...

In Greek myth the Fate and their weaving could be affected by the Furies who occasionally broke loose and went crazy with shears. So fate is only fate until it is disturbed by another force.

I use fate and destiny interchangeably. Now I'll have to give the terms so further thought.

Rambodoc said...

"From a metaphysical standpoint, our essence could represent our destiny - our purpose, but perhaps not our calling. If there should exist such a thing, is completion, or perhaps acceptance, and then the possible denial of it, relevant?"
Paul, could you translate that into English?
Or am I fated to remain in the dark about it?

Paul said...

I would like to help you, Rambodoc, but I am myself puzzling over what Musafir means there.

Musafir, could you elaborate on what you mean there for Rambodoc and me?

ordinarygirl said...

I don't really believe in fate and destiny in a traditional sense. That is, I don't believe that people are fated for each other or that it's someone's destiny to do something in particular.

I do believe that the circumstances of our birth and life events can have enough impact on us to perhaps push us in a certain direction, even against our will. But just as I believe that evolution isn't controlled by a designer, I don't believe that fate or destiny are controlled by anything more than simple chance.

Fate and destiny can be something used to avoid taking responsibility for something in a person's life or for explaining an event that person has no control over. At the same time, not believing in fate or destiny can be used to blame people for bad things that happen in their life that they have no control over.

I believe there are things we can control in our lives through the choices we make (who we may marry or choose as friends maybe) as well as those things that are unavoidable that we have no control over (the death of a loved one or where or what family we're born to). It's a mix of both that defines our lives.

ordinarygirl said...

Oh yeah, and my biggest pet peeve is people who say, "It happened for a reason."

Paul said...

That's a beautiful, clear and concise post, Ordinary Girl! And it happens you seem to have summed up my thoughts about fate and destiny better than I myself ever have. But someone once told me the mark of a brilliant person is they sometimes say things which seem obvious once said, but which it takes a brilliant person to make obvious.

ordinarygirl said...

Thanks, Paul, but it's your post that brought it into focus for me so you get the brilliant credit too. :)

Ashwin said...

To those confused -

If there is a purpose for our creation, does it matter whether or not we fulfill that purpose?

Does it matter if we do what we want to do, or is that fated?

What if we realize what our purpose is, and then do something different?

Steve Jones said...

I've abandoned both fate and destiny in favor of contingency. But then I've pretty much given up on metaphysics other than as an interesting anthropological feature.

Mahendra said...

I believe "fate" and "destiny" are what Ayn Rand calls "anti-concepts".

They have no relation to reality, and are concoctions imagined by the human mind to propagate religious mysticism.