Just have a few female friends on facebook and I’m sure you have seem these memes that mention in one way or another that “Everything Happens for a Reason,” or they are promoting the idea of Karma. This blog here is to tell how most of philosophies are complete bullshit. A philosophy is supposed to be a guidebook on how to live your life. Neither of these outlooks are anyway to live your life. If you want to truly be the best you can be, you have to see that life is one big poker game. A game of chance mixed with the skill of how to play the cards you are dealt.
Let’s first dispel karma. Now, most of the people who believe in this—and there are a fair share of men who believe in it too—probably have no idea how Karma is really supposed to work. It is how the life you led in your past life will affect you in the next one. Not how if you’re a cheater, your next girlfriend will be ugly. When did this idea of karma replace the tried and true saying of, “Life is not fair?” That was the saying I grew up with and I always expected. I just wanted to get more than I deserved. Now all of a sudden life is fair? One event disproves that—The Holocaust. If Karma exists, than you believe those six million Jews deserved to die? They had some bad karma? How about the parents of the dead children from the Sandy Hook Tragedy, and their grief? How about the kids themselves? They deserved to die? What bad Karma could a five year old have possibly committed? Now, as a scholar of history I can tell you the only universal truth history tells us is that life is not fair. So do not think that there is this force of Karma and people will get what they deserve. This doesn’t mean people always get away with shit. And it doesn’t mean that people who work hard won’t be rewarded. It just means that not every wrong is righted, and not every good deed is rewarded. Karma does not exist, and to use this term for simply the sake of your relationships issues is both immature and ignorant. So read a history book, watch the news, and realize Karma does not exist.
Everything happens for a reason, however is a little more of a complex argument, then just simply proving that life is not fair. This view holds some credibility for people because it is comforting, we have our own experiences from our past, and there may actually be some divine intervention to what does occur in this world. Let start with explaining why this outlook is so comforting.
“Everything happens for a reason,” is a great coping mechanism. It relieves us of guilt for our actions. We fail at a relationship—he wasn’t the one. We lose a job—there are better jobs for you. This everything happens for a reason makes us feel great even when we fail. This term is in fact usually used when someone falls onto hard times. But the truth is sometimes shit just happens. This idea helps us to feel comfort when we go through a tough time. We are going through this for a reason, to learn, or for something better to happen. When one door closes another door opens. It’s a positive spin, but it is still a spin nonetheless. We all like to believe we have some great destiny that we are striving to. And one day we will meet our soulmate. But there are no soulmates. People die alone. The divorce rate is over fifty percent. With all the suffering all over the world in underdeveloped countries, you think there is some divine plan so that you can find ever-lasting love, a better job? Why do innocent people in the Middle lose their children to drone strikes? Why do Africans starve, but you don’t have a nice house? No, everything does not happen for a reason. And what’s wrong with taking responsibilities for your actions. Rise and fall, but take credit for both. Trust me, when things are going good for you, it feels better to say, “I earned it.”
This argument however, also gets some traction when people are successful. We look at our current job and say damn am I happy I lost that other shitty job. We find ourselves in love and say God damn I’m glad my ex broke up with me. Even if you are in a happy place, you look back at instances you thought were devastating, and now find yourself in a better place and say, “Everything happens for a reason.” The problem with this outlook is that we do not give us any credit for this amazing miracle called “learning.” Yes, people, we do learn from our mistakes. Why are you in a better job—because you got smarter, more experienced, and hungrier for a better opportunity. Why are you in a better relationship—you learned from your past love mistakes, you know what you do not want, and know how to weed them out earlier. You also became a better boyfriend/girlfriend. This is not things happening for a reason, this is you learning from your mistakes. If you do not learn from them, then you are insane. Insanity is making the same mistake and expecting a different result. Learning and discovery are all a part of life. It is far better to lose someone and find yourself, than the other way around. Well, that’s all you did here with your love life. Maybe your first marriage failed and your second worked not because it was meant to happen for a reason. Maybe you just became a better spouse.
However, there is a third aspect of this argument that is a little harder to disprove. Especially if you have any faith in any kind of divine element playing a role in our world. I am an agnostic, a huge difference from an atheist. An atheist believes in nothing, and like a religious person, they feel they have all the answers. I think everyone got it wrong, but that doesn’t mean there is nothing. We found no life in our solar system, but that doesn’t mean there is no other life in the universe. Just because every current religion I feel is false, doesn’t mean there isn’t something divine out there pulling certain strings. Going back to the Holocaust, this horrible genocide did lead to the creation of the state of Israel. As a historian I can say life isn’t fair, but I can also say that events cause other events to happen. Also every human being on this earth is alive because two people bumped uglies. So maybe there is some divine movement in our relationships so that we meet a person we create a life with. This doesn’t insure any of that fallacy of soulmates and a happy marriage, but sometimes the condom does break, sometimes the pill doesn’t work. I will admit some things may happen for a reason. But we cannot live our lives waiting for things to happen. Expecting things will happen, and just blind faith that everything works out for the best.
Chance is a major factor in so much more than you can understand and control in this world, and what you can control and understand in this world is the rest of it. No karma, not everything happens for a reason. Sometimes people are rewarded and punished for what they do, and sometimes things beyond your control happen and they affect your life. My religion is pokerinity. Life is one big poker game.
If you know anything about the game of poker you know chance is always a factor. Anytime at a table the worst player who knows the least about odds can beat the best player because the cards fall their way. But if they play long enough the better player will always win. You always have to do your best no matter the circumstance. This way when luck or chance is against you, you can minimize your losses, and when luck or chance is on your side you can make the most of it. You cannot be afraid, but you also cannot be arrogant. Pride comes before the fall. And also like in poker you need to be in control of your emotions, hold back a bit what you’re really thinking. Have a filter. With that power you can then also read the emotions and intentions of other people. With that you may not reach a point you consider yourself successful in life (whatever your standard is) but you will be the best you can possibly be. Sure, sometimes the cards fall the way they do to teach you a lesson, true. But most of the time they just fall how they fall and it is up to you to make the most of it.
Sorry to introduce you to the secret of life.