Moshe Ben-Chaim
Reader: Does each one of us have a Destiny, a goal that was preordained by the Creator for a purpose unknown to us? Is each hair on our body counted? Is each organ counted for its function or dysfunction? When we look within ourselves and toward the Universe, we observe how little we are and that we have "control" over only a few elements around us, like survival...maybe.
If there is a Destiny, how is it explained in the Torah.
If there is no preordained Destiny, or if it changes according to our actions, inaction or involuntary events, what is your scholarly and personal opinion in this matter?
Mesora: We have free will. Please read my article of this title: Free Will
The term "destiny" indicates that we are not involved in our true purpose, which requires the use of free will. A person cannot abandon his responsibility. This term "destiny" is also often romanticized - as if to be "swept away" in life. This idea is false and silly and has nothing to do with Torah.
To many, the word "destiny" seems bigger than life itself,...all so divine and pure, a thing outside ourselves over which we have no control. Yet, all these connotations are false, and are not the Torah's view, which is the only absolute and truly objective view of what is real. To claim destiny, is to claim no responsibility for our actions, and this understanding is completely against God's system of reward and punishment. Destiny also denies the entire concept of Torah: The Torah teaches "one system for all mankind" - destiny claims each person has a unique path - contrary to Torah.
God does promise a destiny to those who live righteously and those who live poorly. But that "destiny" does not mean a binding on our actions. It refers to the next world, and does not affect our free will.
But to claim there is a destiny for each member of mankind here on Earth, is to claim that our free will which is a self evident truth, useless. Suggesting this view increases one's error, as we claim that God is also imperfect by giving man the apparatus of an independent will, but not allowing his utilization of it. God would then have labored in vain. This idea is alien to all that is true and rational. God is perfect, and only creates that which has need to be created, that which will realize its purpose.
The Torah leads us to the conclusion that the blind dreamers' safety net of "destiny" is a fallacy best left for Hollywood.

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