Does everything really ‘happen for a reason’?
Something happens, and people try to comfort the person by saying
Everything happens for a reason.
The above phrase or social nicety is intended to have someone feel better and in some situations may feel comforting, but by saying this or even believing it to be true, an opportunity is lost for deeper awareness.
Everything really happens for a reason – or is it karma?
The subtext of ‘everything happens for a reason’ needs to be examined.
Why just say this to someone unless we understand what might be inferred, and what might this phrase trigger in their mind?
It can be easy to mix up the ‘everything…’ phrase with the results of karma.
One essence of karma can be defined as our thoughts defining our decisions.
When we decide to do something, to make our thoughts manifest into action, then we set off a chain reaction of occurrences as a result.
Some aspects of karma are outside of our ability to see or understand what the results could possibly be
As an example of this, my dad was a very heavy smoker (60 a day guy at one point). When he started smoking, no-one knew how harmful it could be, it was just something people did and especially if you wanted to appear very mature as a man, smoking a pipe or cigarette added to your adult self-image because the movie stars and tv stars did it.
From the perspective of creating karma, he couldn’t have known at that time what was going to happen.
When he got older and started having multiple health issues, the knowledge of the effects of smoking was much more up to date.
People knew that it could be detrimental to a person’s health, but he kept on smoking, and it made him very sick. So that part of the story could more accurately be described as karma.
He was aware of new thoughts on the risk of being a smoker but didn’t allow them to affect his decisions, so he got sick. He didn’t allow the new thoughts in so that they could redefine his actions, and he became very unwell. There was a very specific reason that he could have stopped by changing his habits, but he chose not to.
You could also call this the Law of Cause and Effect.
Everything happens for a reason – it could be synchronicity
Carl Jung first coined this word in the 1920s, believing that synchronicity occurs as the result of underlying patterns in the group network, or lattice of consciousness that ties us all together.
Becoming mindful of synchronicity can enable us to become more mindful and learn to notice patterns as they occur.
For example, if you are learning to develop your intuition, then notice the conditions surrounding the times when you get powerful intuitive hits, like somebody calling you on the phone a few minutes after you thought about them, or seeing repeating signs or symbols such as the 11:11 as you go through your day.
These are signs that you are in a different state of mind, noticing this afterward, or even better as it happens, is one of the keys to learning how to develop your intuition.
So does everything happen for a reason?
I prefer to think not. I like to believe we are in a causal universe, for sure, where one thing can affect another.
If we are mindful of karma, then we can focus on our thoughts, choices, and actions to help influence intended outcomes for the better.
If we can stay in the moment and notice synchronicities, then we can be informed by group consciousness, notice patterns, and act appropriately on that information, too.
I prefer to avoid that phrase – everything happens for a reason. It’s too sloppy, and doesn’t describe our Universe accurately enough.
Let me know what you think!