What is luck?
I think the answer would be somewhere along the line of different things to different people. Some would even say there’s no such thing as luck. More that it’s about responsibility.
I think luck is very much a human invention. My dog has no notion of the concept I’m sure and looking around the countryside I see when out walking or consolidating peace I don’t think any creature or organism has any concept of it either. Trees and plants, as far as we can ascertain don’t have sentient thought, although I’m know there are those that would disagree with me. So the notion of Oak for example cursing its bad luck when a branch comes crashing down as the result of a storm is unlikely.
I did watch an episode of ‘wildlife on one’, that featured orang utans. One unlucky (that word) lady had just finished constructing her bed for the night up in the treetops and had just got herself comfy when it started raining. She sat up and put her hand to her forehead in an ‘I don’t believe it’ pose. Coincidence? Or just anthropomorphism? Many apes are very intelligent, so maybe, but for the most part I don’t think most animals or birds or other organism have a concept of ‘luck’.
A human creation. But even then, it means different things to different people.
Last night whilst putting the shower curtain up a metal ball fell off one of the hangers. Had it gone down the plug hole I would have spent the next half hour dismantling the waste pipes because that lump of metal would have destroyed the macerator. I flung the curtain over the hole. Was that luck, or knowledge?
I found 350 in a book yesterday, was that luck? Today I remembered what it was for. Was that bad luck?
At the end of last year I landed the largest design commission I have ever had, Was that luck?
We often have days when one thing goes wrong after another? We have all used the phrase, ‘if I didn’t have bad luck, I’d have no luck at all!’
Luck can appear to be cyclical and spiral out of control too. Bad days… And quite often what appears to be bad luck on one day can become good luck on another day, or the reverse. See the money example above.
Let’s look at each example. The shower curtain. Knowledge had a large factor in the end result. Knowledge would also have saved the macerator had the ball gone down the plug hole. Luck, had nothing to do with it.
The 350 quid, I should have remembered why it was there, but as humans we are not perfect, and nor is our memory. Again, knowledge is key.
The design commission. No luck there I would argue, just a lot of hard work building up skills and reputation. Knowledge again.
Bad days, generally, on reflection, we could have done something different that would have changed the outcome, even if that was to put ourselves in a different place, physically or mentally.
Events appearing different on different days, again that’s down to perspective, so therefore knowledge probably.
I think in all these situations it’s not the event, it’s how we frame it in our minds. Right now, I have my fingers crossed that a large design commission will drop in. I have done all I can do to ensure it does. Hopefully it will, there’s another fantastic word. If it doesn’t, well I never had it, so I haven’t lost it, only the idea of it.
Is that bad ‘luck’? No, it’s just the way it is.
I’ve reframed it.
Is luck something that arrives unexpectedly, maybe, but there’s usually a reason for that too, if you look for it.
Is winning the lottery ‘luck’, No, there’s a mathematical possibility, however small.
Maybe the single most important thing about luck is the hope that it brings…
But hope is also a state of mind….
Very powerful one though.