Sunday, September 7, 2014

WHY DO BAD THINGS HAPPEN?



Have you ever noticed that at the very moment when your finances, worries, and affairs seem to be in order, something will go wrong with your car or a bill-collector will come to collect something even though you thought that all your debts were paid, or some other misfortune gets thrown in your lap?

Sometimes, I get so afraid of what is going happen next that I lay awake at night frozen with fear, worried that I will lose my finances, or that something will happen to a family member, or some great catastrophic event will leave me and my family homeless and in dire need.

There are so many wonderful things to be thankful for: FACTORS of life: Food, Agriculture, Clothing, Transportation, Occupation, Resources, and Shelter. If you are Christian, like me, then you tend to be thankful for the Word, Gift of the Holy Spirit, Forgiveness of Sins, and Everlasting Life. Then there are things like the fairly stable weather, I mean we still have a summer and a winter. And, if you live in Canada, there is government healthcare, welfare, unemployment insurance, and pension, even though our national debt is in the billions of dollars. We have clean air (WHO places us 3rd for the cleanest air on the planet), fresh water, and a beautiful cottage country. And, most importantly, we should be thankful for family and friends.

But it doesn't matter how thankful you are, or where you live, or what your religious beliefs are. Bad things are inevitable. They happen to everyone, regardless of the money in your bank account, your status, or age. Bad things happen to good and bad people alike.

Some spiritual people say that bad things happen for a reason, for spiritual growth, to teach us a lesson, to teach us how to be stronger, kinder, more patient. Have you ever been in a situation where you secretly ask for patience? "God grant me patience!" you might yell when a car just cuts right in front of you and you have to slam on your brakes to avoid hitting it. Well, maybe that car was a test of your patience. 

Some people say we are all born of circumstance. Every human being is born into a social and cultural setting, a community with family, language, religion, etc., and usually, when we are raised in the same surroundings, we develop the same way of thinking, which can be deeply imbedded in the human mind. The values, morals, and ethics of a single culture that dominate a region can be extremely influential and hard to get away from. Right or wrong, those values are promoted by the community and government. People mostly live and die in the social class they were born into. Therefore, if you are born poor, then you will likely die poor. 

Others believe in the negative laws of Karma. We've all heard these expressions: "As you sow so shall you reap" or "An eye for an eye" and "As you do unto others so shall it be done unto you."   The science side of this states, "For every action there is an equal and opposing reaction." Even today's common knowledge expresses this principle in the saying, "What goes around, comes around." This is the law of karma, of cause and effect.

A lot of people believe that the devil himself is loose on the earth, wreaking havoc and misleading the entire inhabited earth. 

Bad things can happen when we make bad decisions. For instance, making a major purchase without thoroughly weighing the pros and cons can have bad consequences, a ripple effect even, like buying a house or used car. You might have the money for the monthly payments on that beautiful home, but do you have enough for the maintenance, yearly property taxes, and damages that seem to come up from nowhere?

There is no scientific proof, but some people who believe in numerology say that bad things happen in threes, like death. I myself have noticed that when one person I know dies, two others follow. This is known as the Confirmation Effect, which is the tendency to accept evidence that confirms our beliefs and to reject evidence that contradicts them. 

Anyone who has studied Darwin's Theory of Evolution in high school will remember his take on Natural Selection. He viewed everything as resulting from designed laws, with the details, whether good or bad, left to the working out of what we may call chance. Bad things happen to people to weed out the weak. 

Then there is the power of positive thinking. Apparently, nothing bad will ever happen if you have the power of positive thinking. Some people think that the power of positive thinking can make you the Prime Minister of Canada or the President of the United States! The power of positive thinking makes everyone flock to America to become rich and famous. It will even save you from all the bad stuff in the world. It can even save you from death! It will take you out of the gutters of hell and place you on the clouds of heaven, or so I've heard. So, if bad things happen, then you are a negative person and bad things happen to negative people. Not a very nice concept, is it?

Why do you think bad things happen?