(Warning! The argumentation does not apply in case of religious person.)

It always frustrates me if somebody gives away their initiative in life, but it actually puzzles me when they do it because they think that everything is predetermined anyway. I think that the fact is true that everything is predetermined – and this is precisely the reason we have to do our best to create a better future. I guess that sentence puzzles people just as much as giving up initiative because of a belief in an ascertained fate puzzles me, so I’ll explain a bit on this.

I have a programmer’s understanding of fate – the future is defined by initial data and all the rules (the program or the natural laws) that are applied to it by that time. As a scientific-minded person I believe that there is no true random – behind chaos, behind random events there are rules we haven’t discovered yet or data we didn’t consider; even the “acceptable measuring error” is actually implication that the experiment cannot be entirely separated from the environment (other data and other natural laws are being applied outside the experiment and they are influencing it). So if you knew all the initial data and all the rules; and you could apply them faster than they happen naturally, you could predict what the result will be at any moment.

Of course this can only be theoretical because the amount of data and the rules is enormous, unimaginable even. You’d have to include data of each electron and atom existing anywhere, all the forces influencing them and all the laws of all the sciences and more (I believe we have only scratched the surface of all there is to know about the rules by which the universe/multiverse works). No person has brain big enough to hold all that data inside; no computer system comes even close to the computing power needed. There is only one thing that can know it all and apply all the laws – and that is the nature(/universe/multiverse/…) itself. And nature applies the rules just in time for them to happen, it doesn’t care for knowing ahead of time what will happen, everything happens as it happens and whenever it is supposed to happen.

And as fate is preset in grand scale, it is also set to the tiniest of atoms and to the decisions we make in life. Yes, also the decision to give up initiative, also called “free will”. The best explanation I have seen of how much free will there is in this predetermined world (as understood by me), is written by Schoppenhauer (On The Freedom Of Will – though I found it in Wikipedia):

You can do what you will, but in any given moment of your life you can will only one definite thing and absolutely nothing other than that one thing.

So, in a way you have free will, but then again this free will is predetermined. If you give up doing anything because you are convinced that everything is predetermined anyway, this is also predetermined; and it is also predetermined that due to the neglect of any action on your part your life will now go the way others make it go. It is predetermined, whether I can convince anyone to readjust the reins, grip them with a steady hand, or not (thus giving up their fate into the hands of others).

I try, as I do my best for my life and my future, because it is a causal fate that I believe in. I am actively causing the future (to be better, I hope), but it is a collaboration with everyone out there – both active and inactive; and also with all the forces of nature. It is already predetermined if I will succeed or not, but nobody knows what that will be, nobody can know this. So it is better to work actively towards a possible better future than give in to the complacency and neglect that will surely bring about ruin and decay. That way the causal nature of predetermination is also the reason for actively pursuing a fate instead of letting it happen and everybody should do their best to create a future as they consider to be best.