The Garden of Forking Paths
by Jorge Luis Borges
The Garden of Forking Paths Fate and Free Will Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Paragraph)
It seemed incredible that this day, a day without warnings or omens, might be that of my implacable death. (3)
Yu Tsun's language often seems to betray a belief in fate or destiny. If he's going to die, he expects to get some sort of warning from the universe.
In spite of my dead father, in spite of having been a child in one of the symmetrical gardens of Hai Feng, was I to die now? (3)
This is one of the fleeting allusions Yu Tsun makes to his childhood, which seems to have been a privileged one. He contrasts his childhood privilege with the misfortune of his present circumstances, feeling that it's unfair. Shouldn't an auspicious past lead to an equally fortunate future?
I told myself that the duel had already started and that I had won the first encounter by besting my adversary in his first attack... by an accident of fate. I argued that so small a victory prefigured a total victory. (13)
Once again Yu Tsun commits the fallacy of assuming that one event prefigures a trend. One bit of good fortune, by this reasoning, would mean total victory – but the fact that Yu Tsun is narrating this story from prison tells us that he was wrong.