What is the difference between destiny and free will?

by Chaitanya Charan dasDecember 3, 2019

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Transcriber: Dr Suresh Gupta

Edited by: Sharan Shetty

Question: What is the difference between destiny and freewill?

Answer: What happens to us is our destiny, how we respond to it is our free will.

Our life is determined less by what happens to us and more by how we respond to it because destiny determines the consequence of our actions, not our actions itself.
Destiny is about things which are not in our control whereas freewill is about what is in our control. We cannot determine what is going to happen, but we always have the option to choose our responses.

The more spiritual we become the more freedom we have to choose responsibly. This is because our freewill is maximised due to our connection with God which frees us from dependence on circumstance. When we are depended on circumstances, our options to choose are limited. For example, if a very ego-centred person feels insulted by someone then he constantly thinks about the insult. He uses his free will to come up with numerous ways to get back to the person to make him suffer. The thought process of such a person becomes constricted and filled with negative focus. However, if the same person is practising spiritual consciousness, then he is likely to use his free will to think maturely that although the person insulted me there is no need to let the negative thoughts dominate me.

In this case, destiny was that somebody insulted the person although he did not do anything wrong. His freewill was to choose between (i) there is no need to dwell on that person or (ii) get into a vengeance complex. A spiritual person would use his free will more constructively by choosing to respond appropriately and eventually move on with his life. Free will shapes how we respond to events, and destiny determines what events will happen in our life.

End of transcription.

About The Author
Chaitanya Charan das

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