Amor Fati or Dancing in the Rain May 20, 2021May 21, 2021 | paula belle flores This piece is dedicated to my dear Nemo, who passed away 2 weeks ago.Until we meet again, we dance together in the rain, in my dreams and in my thoughts. Yesterday my brother paid me a visit. He was on a short motorcycle ride and he stopped by on his way home to say hi. I offered to make him some pancakes but he refused as he was in a hurry. I insisted. He refused me again. I insisted more (I am really pushy sometimes. I must work on that) telling him that they will be ready in no time. He again refused my offer and told me that he promised his wife he’d be home before the night fall. She doesn’t like knowing him riding his motorcycle during the night time. I understand her completely so I wished him a safe trip and thanked him for stopping by. He did not get home on time. Only 15 more km to go and he got a flat tire.The moment he called me to tell me what happened I had suddenly realized just how much we depend on luck, fate, God… whatever you want to call it, in our daily life. For me, the simple things, the more or less ordinary moments of life have that special power of opening my eyes if they come at the right moment, in the right circumstances, in the right “shape”. And it seems that my brother’s motorcycle had the perfect shape”! Of course I was aware that we don’t have complete control over our lives, but that was the “A-ha” moment that had short-circuited my lazy neurons irreversibly and made me realize at a much deeper level not only the idea of , let’s say, fate, but the importance of embracing it instead of fighting it or complaining about it. We might want things, we might make plans, and, when things don’t go according to our plans, we might fight, we might struggle, we might rebel but, in the end, we have no control over anything, we are in fate’s hands. The sooner we embrace this idea, the better. The only thing we can control is the way we perceive things, the way we respond to life. Well… this perception might also be an illusion but I leave the discussion for another time . Anyway, instead of fighting, or lamenting, or seeing ourselves as victims of life’s circumstances, we might as well try to embrace life as it is, to see the light in everything and try to perceive every misfortune as a possibility for growing. I know I don’t say anything new. We have all met this idea many times on the internet, in movies, in books, but for me this was the moment in which this simple knowledge permeated my every cell and became part of me.On the subject, Nietzsche once said: “My formula for greatness in a human being is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not forward, not backward, not in all eternity. Not merely bear what is necessary, still less conceal it…but love it”.I liked the phrase that he used to express his idea. Amor fati comes from Latin and it is rooted in the wisdom of the ancient Stoic school of Greece, that means “love of one’s fate”. It describes an attitude in which one sees everything that happens in one’s life, including suffering and loss, as good or, at the very least, necessary. Well… I don’t know if suffering is necessary, but it, for sure, help us grow if we are inclined to introspection. If we aren’t, then there is the risk that we are suffering in vain and nothing good comes out of it. And it really is a pity to suffer and not learn something of it or do something out of the situation. A kite, at least, or a paper crane, or a house for lady bugs. Anything. For our own good or for somebody else’s.The same idea we find at Epictetus, who, two millenniums ago, said: “Ask not that events should happen as you will, but let your will be that events should happen as they do, and you shall have peace.“ There you go: the key to peace of mind, according to the slave turned philosopher, is accepting one’s fate: with good and bad, with chaos and order, with wins and loses, with everything.The idea is not about becoming passive and accepting everything with resignation. Not at all. It is about working with the situations. Together. As a team. And instead of letting yourself crushed by the wave of “misfortunes” that has just come upon you, or instead of trying to resist it, to fight it when it hits you, just acknowledge it, jump on it, ride it, make the best out of it. You’ll end up with a wave-ride and, most probably, you’ll catch a big fish. But really… only riding a wave would be awesome with or without the fish. So… why not try the experience?For example, next time when you are on your summer holiday on a wonderful beach in Greece and it doesn’t stop raining for days, don’t get mad, don’t blame fate. Embrace the situation, turn it into something to remember. Dress yourself beautifully, for a special occasion, get out and dance in the rain, dance with the rain. Let the water drops kiss you, kiss them back, give the rain a big hug, make it your dance partner, thank the sky for this blessing. Because rain is a blessing. In moderate quantities. And this is how this “Amor Fati or Dancing in the Rain” piece was born. It all started with a flat tire. I leave the neuroscience to decipher the intricacies of my brain as I have abandoned this task long ago.