I don’t subscribe to religion, my feeling is that I’ve read enough over my life to have a firmer belief in science and progress.
But I read fiction and stories too and I take what I can from it all.
I’m a huge fan of Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon Series of books that have been televised as The Last Kingdom, it’s an epic story of Uthred, a Saxon who serves King Alfred of Wessex in the ninth century.
Basically, his mantra or motto is, as I said above, Fate is Inexorable.
The phrase is old English ‘Wyrd bith ful āræd’and for me, it sums up Uthred. He can’t escape fate.
He makes oaths. He honours them. Well pretty much, otherwise you don’t have a story.
He fights in a shield wall, he has comrades, he’s one for all and all for one.
He sometimes has to face champions one on one. He’s not the best swordsman, not the biggest guy, not the fastest guy. But he knows the weaknesses of those he has to face, he’s brave, durable and, now and again, lucky.
He’s a Lord, so he commands. He’s not a rich Lord though. He does his own dirty work, he leads more through example than by force or compulsion.
He gets loyalty by respect and by setting an example. His foes respect him as a warrior.
Where Uthred falls is through his oaths. He is pagan, not Christian. His word is true, he commits to Alfred, he sees the man, he sees the vision for Engaland or England and he values the wisdom of the weak and piously Christian King.
His oaths to Alfred lead Uthred to conflict and war. He is his sword.
So… Fate is Inexorable.
I make my choices. I make my commitments, I keep going, it’s my path.
I’m not a complete fatalist. I know my decisions influence my life, it’s not woven for me.
I have faith in some people. I don’t have faith in everyone. I try to watch my back as much as I can.
But, ultimately, I make my decisions. They may be wrong, I may learn to change them, I may decide to stay with them.
I respect those that are worth it. I despise those who deserve it.
I have to think of my children and their lives. If there’s an oath I’ve given it is to them first and foremost.
Now, where does that get me?
I’m not Uthred and couldn’t pretend to be so. I’m not pagan, neo-pagan or wiccan or a heathen.
I see the value of some respects of recognising the past. I respect those who believe in something or anything, but it’s not for me.
I can accept my fate based on my decisions and my life so far. No one divine will intervene in my life or make a change or a miracle.
I try my best and sometimes my best won’t be good enough. I can’t always win in the way Uthred does. I accept things I can’t change and try to change things that I can’t accept.
I think I know who I am and what I’m about. I pretty much keep myself as best I can.
Now, being Autistic means I have my internal dialogue that’s with me from being alone, from not always being able to communicate or quite understand the ways of the neurotypical majority in this world.
My fate really isn’t quite the same as their fate. I have to consider much in advance.
It’s down to my own code, my ways. There’s things I avoid and try not to do.
I get guilty if I feel I fail myself or others. I care about people, I try to be decent. I try to see the good, be productive in my life. Give something back if and when I can.
There’s no guarantees. Nothing is sure. I’m just one person, but, my inner core and self are trying to do the right thing. Trying to follow my own oaths to myself.
It’s my fate. (Pretty much)