Facing destiny

Destiny can play strange tricks on the mind, making you deviate from your chosen course of action, and many men, over the course of centuries, have succumbed to their destiny, literally. What is it that makes a man leave a pre-determined path and embrace and accept his destiny, many a time knowing all too well that nothing but certain death awaits him on the path of destiny.

A soldier for instance – eulogised in Hindi cinema as the blustering patriot in love with the country, addicted to a higher social calling. Bunkum, every bit of it. I have always had my doubts about the jingoistic patriotism thrust upon our soldiers to feed our popular perception. A soldier fights to die or to win because that’s his destiny, and he accepts it, without complaint – that is the real source of bravery. Yes, adrenaline too plays its part, for caught in the throes of a passionate combat with the enemy, the love for life can make you embrace death.

But just what is it that makes men give up their planned course of action? Is it just a headstrong attitude, a rush of blood? Nah. The rush of blood happens much later, in the final attempt to conquer the summit. It’s a recognition by men faced with a choice that they will never be truly happy till they give in to the desire of one final fling with destiny, no matter what the consequences.

It’s a recognition that deep inside, having fought destiny all through their lives, it has become part of their DNA and no matter how much you try to ignore the voice of your DNA, you will eventually capitulate. Sometimes, to fatal consequences, sometimes to life altering consequences. Sometimes, to celebratory consequences, sometimes, to a lifetime of repentance.

Every man who risks heeding the call of destiny, also knows somewhere in his heart, that it could lead to the end-game of his life – whether metaphorically, or literally. He also knows that avoiding destiny could also mean a lifetime of avoiding your own gaze in the mirror, and knowing that, can wreak havoc with the mind.

So be it, to each, his own destiny. As I await mine.

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