Life has no agenda

One of my favorite sayings is the above-stated “life has no agenda” or in Swedish, as is closer to some sort of truth that tickles me: “livet vill dig inget särskilt”. Another translation could be “life has nothing particular in store for you”.

This saying first came to me during my psychologist training. I had a very wise teacher in psychodynamics who, as I remember it, suddenly woke up from her teaching monologue and looked at us students and with some sort of glittering wonder in her eyes told us this. Life has no agenda. Life doesn’t care if you feel good or bad. Life just is. Life is not personal. Things that happen in your life are just things that happen in your life. There is no additional layer.

The additional layer, our interpretations of life and how we make sense of our lives, are what have some sort of agenda. The agenda looks like, for most people I would assume (therefore taking the risk of “making an ass out of u and me”): “what’s in it for me?”. How can life make me feel good? How can there be ease, joy and happiness? How can life give me something? How can I be someone, someone special? What will make me?

These questions are perfectly fine, normal and common. However, they create a prison out of self-centeredness. In our consumeristic times, we want life to provide something, but this something further builds our prison walls.

What if life doesn’t have anything particular in store for you? What if whatever happens in your life is not something that has anything to do with you? All the wrongs and misfortunes you’ve experienced, as well as all the happy moments? What if all the experiences are just a natural part of a stream – always moving, never the same but somehow made out of the same stuff and always interconnected?

Originally posted on the 4th of August 2021.

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