Pentecost 141

Pentecost 141
My Psalms 141

Be Your Own Hero

Fortune tellers are found in tourist areas, street fairs, and areas full of mysticism. They are frequented by people wanting to make a better life, better decisions, or sometimes just for fun. Usually dressed in Romani or gypsy attire, such tellers of the future and one’s fortune seem to call upon nature and a mysterious knowledge of the air to determine one’s path taken for tomorrow.

While fortune telling is considered a scam, many in the business world participate in similar undertakings, seeking what people will do and like for tomorrow. In doing so, they often employ predictive analysis. Using a predictive algorithm, statistical techniques analyze the past and the present to predict the future.

These predictive models or exercises use mountains of data which include basic historical facts and past trends as well as economic patterns and learning curves to identify upcoming opportunities as well as potential risks. Models are created and these pretend scenarios allow for the arrangement and rearrangement of variables. The knowledge gained helps guide and direct business decisions and future business mergers and transactions.

Most people, certainly in the United States of America, take part in predictive analysis every day whether they realize it or not. Their credit score employs predictive analysis of their past credit history, spending patterns, which can be tracked through the use of credit cards and business loyalty cards, as well as purchases bought with loans such as cars or houses. Those interest rates also use predictive analysis in determining how good the client will be in paying off their debts. Without realizing it, most Americans become a part of the fortune telling economic environment.

We also become our own fortune tellers when we make decisions. A person electing to drink and drive has just decided they will most likely suffer harm or cause another to be harmed. Someone who stays in an abusive relationship has just guaranteed themselves of future danger and physical or emotional harm. Someone who smokes while pregnant or continues to eat as they did in the past after having been diagnosed with diabetes or a similar disorder based upon nutrition has given themselves a shorter lifespan.

We can become our own hero, though, when we elect to make the future positive. Life is not a race to be won but a pace, like in a marathon, to be run. When we become our own fortune teller and accept that responsibility, then we have a better chance for success. Every morning is like our own fortune cookie. We are the one who write what it will behold. We may not be able to control the events of the day but we can control our response and whether or not we succumb to temptation that will not be in our own best interests.

One important aspect of the analysis, however, is the angle of observation. What might seem like failure from one point of view might be success from another and vice versa. A popular advertising campaign in the 1980’s featured Joe Camel, a caricature of a camel. It was so popular that opponents rallied and eventually had the ad campaign pulled. The artist and promotional gambit was too successful and it was felt that it would encourage underage smoking since the camel represented the name of the cigarettes being advertised. Thus what was once a successful sketch and idea became synonymous with improperly targeted advertisements.

The 1922 novel “Siddhartha”, written by Hermann Hesse tells the spiritual journey of the title character. In it, Hesse writes: “ “I have always believed, and I still believe, that whatever good or bad fortune may come our way we can always give it meaning and transform it into something of value.” We know ourselves better than anyone else. We can use predictive analysis in forging our own future. Using our own personality traits, shortcomings, and preferences, we can combine them with our belief structure. Then we have a path to follow, a path that can lead us to becoming our own hero. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra agreed: “The brave man carves out his fortune, and every man is the sum of his own works.”

My Psalm 141

Holy Maker, Holy Lord:
The path is not always smooth.
There are dangers and attackers around each bend.
Help, Great Spirit, not to give in.
Give to me patience for the battles necessary.
Grant me grace to forgive my enemies and persecutors.
Allow me mercy to all I encounter, especially myself.
Permit me to be my own best friend, dear God.
My Course may not be straight;
Assist me in running the race to the fullest.
Thank you, precious Holiness, for your faith in me.

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