Is the illusion of control over our lives a western trait, or more a human one?
We expect, in the middle class of this country, that if you study hard, do your time, eat your veggies, go to church, play by the rules, that things will work out for you.
We know, cognitively, that this isn't necessarily true.
But I believed it. I think most of us do. My version of faith, perhaps?
I don't think it's a bad thing to believe. It's a good motivator. Makes you feel good about yourself, your accomplishments, the people you love.
It's a shield, a forcefield. An invisible airbag that must be there, to protect you if you were to be sideswiped, or rearended.
I don't have it anymore. Lots of people don't. Anyone who has been rearended, and not seen the layer of airbag dust settle on their lives know they don't have it. It makes life more scary.
Is it better to believe in an illusion, or not? To believe that things will just work out well, since you are doing what you are supposed to? It seems easier, gentler. And if nothing "bad" ever happens to you, maybe better.
Would it make life's challenges easier if you weren't surprised that the airbag wasn't there? Maybe. Maybe not.
I'm not sure if I want the illusion back. I'm not sure if it's my decision to make anyway.