A Certain Suspicion Before Death

Here is an intriguing passage from An Open Life, a collection of interviews with the late Joseph Campbell:

"There's a wonderful paper by Schopenhauer, called 'An Apparent Intention of the Fate of the Individual,' in which he points out that when you are at a certain age...and look back over your life, it seems to be almost as orderly as a composed novel. And just as in Dickens' novels, little accidental meetings and so forth turn out to be main features in the plot, so in your life. And what seem to have been mistakes at the time, turn out to be directive crises. And then he asks: 'Who wrote this novel?'

"Life seems as though it were planned...Schopenhauer finally asks the question: Can anything happen to you for which you're not ready? I look back now on certain things that at the time seemed to me to be real disasters, but the results turned out to be the structuring of a really great aspect of my life and career. So what can you say?"

Related Article:

An Odd Theory Of Human Identity.