Fate

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The dreams of man
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Whatever happens, they say afterwards, it must have been fate. People are always a little confused about this, as they are in the case of miracles.
Terry Pratchett, Interesting TimesWikipedia's W.svg

Fate is the notion that some or all events are preordained by a god, a number of gods, muses, certain humans, or another force. Fate is an interesting superstition (or perhaps not a superstition) because like the mere existence of supernatural beings it can not be experimentally tested. That is to say anything that ever has happened, is now happening or ever will happen can be attributed to "fate" with no opportunity to disprove the claim. If there is such thing as fate, then free will may not exist, or will be severely weakened.

Fate is a common theme in narratives and plots, as it's either a convenient get-out clause for over-contrived plot points or because it just makes things more interesting. Sometimes it is used in woo such as fortune-telling to catch the imagination of the listener and continue to talk them out of their money while the fortune teller explains how all their dreams will inevitably come true and love is waiting around the corner, et cetera. This suggests some people supposedly are able to "read" the preordained future, so long as they are sufficiently vague that their claims can't be tested until long after the money is spent.

See also[edit]