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The Power of Chance

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“Chance is always powerful. Let your hook always be cast, in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish.” -- Ovid


I really admire Ovid’s insight in this quote; for he is expressing a popular belief, that you must be open to new opportunities, never judge potential prospects, and never, ever, give up. If we, as a human race, cast our proverbial hooks into all the possible pools, then somehow, somewhere, we will catch a fish. It may not be the fish we had in mind, but it will be a fish nonetheless.
This remarkable quotation of Ovid’s reminds me of the popular proverb, “when God closes a door, somewhere, He opens a window,” because both of these maxims are expressing the same concept; that we can find fish in places that may seem unexpected. We always hear those stories; the famous musician who wanted to play football but got cut from the team, so he took up piano; the star basketball player who only played in soccer’s offseason to keep in shape; these stories go on and on, the people who would never be where they are today if they hadn’t been open to other opportunities. One of the most well-known examples of Ovid’s legendary insight is the man who led America to be the world power we are today, George Washington. I’ll bet you didn’t know that one of our Founding Fathers never wanted to be the Commander in Chief of our Continental Army or the First President of these United States. Actually, George Washington wanted to be a general in the British Army, but he was demoted. How different our country would be today if Washington had stayed in the Loyalist Army!


Another powerful point that Ovid makes is his use of the word chance. Chance is a funny thing; some attribute life’s changing events to crazy coincidences, others to the will of God, still more to fate. What constitutes chance, really? Maybe we’ll never know, but perhaps, in his wisdom, Ovid did.



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