I yam what I yam what I yam what I yam...
You can call it chaos theory, the butterfly effect or just chance; but each of us are who we are as the results of chance.
Not only that, but our lives are a microcosm of the development of life on the earth.
Using me as an example:
Had my mother not been ovulating the night I was conceived.
Had my father, whoever he was, used a condom.
Had a different sperm fertilized the egg.
Had my mother chosen an abortion rather than carry me to term.
Had my grandmother not raised me.
Had we not moved to Mississippi when I was eight years old.
Had I not joined the Navy directly out of high school
After my first hitch in 1963 I got out of the military. I had ninety days to reenlist and retain my rank. I was laid off from my job at Christmas time and couldn’t find a job – no unemployment back then.
One week after I reenlisted I was notified I had been accepted for the Maine State Police Academy.
In 1967 I requested an inter-service transfer from the Navy to the Army’s attack helicopter pilot program. Before the paperwork was approved I crushed my ankle in an automobile accident.
Had the driver been driving three miles per hour faster, or slower…
Had I not been stationed where I met my wife.
Had she not been attracted to me
Had we not gone to college together
Had we not majored in education
Had we not attendee a lecture on teaching in the Indian villages of Alaska.
Had we not gone to Alaska
You can see where this is going.
The hundreds of choices I made, and the tens-of-thousands of happenstances that I had no control over have resulted in me, in my seventies, living in a cabin in northwestern Maine, with a beautiful young wife and two Maine Coon Cats.
I am who I am who I am who I am – by chance.
There is no reason to believe that if we turned back the clock to the morning before I was conceived that the results would turn out the same.
I am a microcosm of the earth.
If we could turn back the clock to the time when the first microscopic life evolved on this earth, there is no reason to believe that 3.8 billion years later there would be bipedal, upright walking, pseudo-intelligent mammal proclaiming a god in its own image.
We are who we are who we are by the most minuscule chance.