Amor Fati — the Love of Fate

“Don’t seek for everything to happen as you wish it would, but rather wish that everything happens as it actually will — then your life will flow well.”


“It is easy to praise providence for anything that may happen if you have two qualities: a complete view of what has actually happened in each instance and a sense of gratitude. Without gratitude what is the point of seeing, and without seeing what is the object of gratitude?”


Wishing that the opposite had happened in a situation recently? Pining for some other outcome, which didn’t actually come to pass? That’s a recipe for suffering, by almost any measure, and by all systems of belief around the world.

What feels good, by comparison? Accepting what has happened. Stoics call this “the art of acquiescence”, as author Ryan Holiday outlines in today’s page in his book The Daily Stoic. Instead of resisting and wishing for what can’t be, modify your outlook to one of acceptance.

This runs in the same vein as the core tenet of stoicism: accepting what we can’t control. And then by extension, try accepting what has already happened.

Even further, you can level up your game and try actually loving what happened. Stoics call this amor fati — the love of fate. It might sound nearly impossible. But if you can find a way to love and enjoy, and even feel gratitude toward what has already occurred (and what will come to pass in the future), then your contentedness and your inner strength will absolutely soar.

It feels a little like a cheat code to achieving contentment, this act of ‘wishing for what has already occurred or what will occur’ — and it is! But it’s still a smarter move than hoping for what definitely didn’t/won’t come to pass, that’s just the definition of futility and you will never find peace that way.

Again, amor fati sounds almost like a foolish thing, and extremely challenging to actually do. But if you can dig deep and prioritize this self-work to get yourself into this mode of thinking, the reward will be immense. Your soul will be strengthened and thus will be full of happiness and contentedness.

And isn’t that better (and wiser) than wishing for what can’t be?

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