A Boat Analogy for Decisions

 “The moving finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on; nor all thy piety nor wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a line,
Nor all thy tears wash out a word of it.”
—From The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam

One of life’s greatest illusions is the belief that the past is responsible for the condition of your life.

One way to understand this fallacy that the past determines your life is to imagine your body is a speedboat that is cruising through the water at 40 knots per hour. You look from the stern peering down at the water. What you would see in this imaginary scene is the wake, the “V” shape of turbulence in the water left behind.

The boat represents you “cruising” through life, and the wake represents your past. It is rather obvious that a trail left behind cannot determine where the boat is going. The engine determines your direction—not the wake.

When you think that the past determines the future you are living an illusion—that the wake is driving your life.

Much of current psychological thinking is based on this illusion—that people will be healed when they “discover” what it was from their past that determines the present or the future.  But the finger is still attached to your heart, and you can write anything you choose regardless of what it wrote yesterday.