Pure Daft

Does fate exist?

11 Aug 2007

I don’t believe that fate, as such, exists, so much as the predictability of consequences that could be called fate.

I’ve just been watching an episode of The X-Files, ‘Redrum’, which lead me to revisit the subject. The voiceover summary at the end of the episode explains:

MARTIN WELLS: The passage of time in prisons is not in a cell of brick and mortar but in one of hopes dashed and tragedies unaverted. How precious, then, the chance to go back only to discover that in facing the past you must face up to yourself… that exiting the prison of time doesn’t free you from the prison of your own character… one from which there is no escape.</blockquote>

— Episode ‘Redrum’ of The X-Files. Quote from Inside The X

It is this ‘prison of your own character’ which I think is particularly interesting. I believe that everyone’s responses to any event are predictable because of their personality. Their personality, in turn, is calculable at any given moment as it is the sum of all their responses to events in the past and their personality as it was without any such experiences (their nature). It is how people deal with situations that shows us, and themselves, what the content of their character actually is.

It could be suggested that a person’s response to an innocent event, where something occurs unlike any other previous experience – such as a baby’s first eye-opening or a child’s first viral infection, are natural responses and that their future responses are tainted by the way they dealt with these original events. Therefore one could argue that all responses a rooted in a person’s nature.

The events themselves would be as predictable as the weather, for you would have to know the sum of everything to date and then be able to best-guess what will happen. But it is no doubt that the events a person is subject to is important in the revelations of personality.

So, can people change? Only if it is originally in their nature to be able to change. Even then, they may need to prove to themselves though the response to something that they are able. Otherwise, maybe they would be different in the first place.


I have been told of a theory where there are an infinite number of possibilities, but our reality only follows the path of the most probable outcome, where, for example, a bus traveling down the street does not mysteriously vanish. But, in theory, there is a minute possibility of this happening. I don’t like this theory, as it suggests there are other realities. Of course, there’s a possibility that there are other realities, but it is a speculative as God’s existence.