The determinants of human lives

While I await the improbable, I think I will now consider this imponderable: what influences shape our very existence?

I have experienced a confusing and chaotic life, and feel that, while I have expressed my free will to the optimum, I have been on a flowing river of a personal destiny. It is a strange feeling, a gut feeling! This river seems to have its own trajectory; but don’t almost all rivers end in the sea? So, where is the sea for me? But then, what about the intervening terrain?

It is fascinating to think about the likely causes of Earthly life, and how they might shape our reaction potentials. First, there is genetic inheritance; but is there not evidence that the womb can alter this input to some extent? Next, there is upbringing, which is so variable; but, do divergent life experiences alter the shared character or nature of identical twins? What of chance impacts? Further, does not personality have a role in the way individuals respond to whatever impinges upon them?

What if personality, or a reaction potential, is caused (yes, caused) by past life experiences? Now, here is a challenging thought! Since there is some evidence in support of reincarnation, which implies the reality of past lives, how could past lives influence a current life? What would be the mechanism or pathway?

What if a past life, with its amalgam of nature (genetic), nurture (upbringing), chance impacts, and the resultant personality, leaves traces to influence a future life? The parallel would be the Law of Cause and Effect, with many effects becoming causes, ad infinitum.

I have certainly felt, perhaps intuited (through some attempts at peering into my past lives through self-hypnosis), that there is a clear pattern in the flow of my present life. The wheels of my life-chances cart have fallen off more than once; and I have fallen into holes which were definitely not there. These experiences were instrumental in my personal development (for, failure is a possible stepping stone to subsequent success). And learning does not have to be pleasant, especially if it fits into a pattern. I think of this pattern as a personal destiny.