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poofandmook's avatar

Do you ever think "I could have been born as *** in the country of *** with *** kind of life?"?

Asked by poofandmook (17272points) June 11th, 2010

How to explain… I’m watching a documentary about kids born into the red light district of Calcutta, and I thought “Gee, I could’ve been born a girl in that place and been forced into prostitution as a child”. Do you ever think things like that, or are you of the belief that you were always going to be born who and where you are?

Does this make any sense?

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12 Answers

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Of course I do – much of what all of us has is random luck for having been born here instead of there. This is why it’s imperative to understand our privilege and not place too much value in our heritage or place of birth.

poofandmook's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: That’s what I mean. I believe it was luck that I ended up where I am. But I’m wondering if anyone thinks that luck has nothing to do with it, and that you couldn’t have ended up anywhere, but were always destined, I guess, to be right where you are.

This sounded better in my head, I think.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@poofandmook I understand what you’re saying – this is a GQ.

tinyfaery's avatar

You, poof, are who you are based on the biology of your parents, your formative years, and your daily experience. There is no way you could exist in any other place and time. You could never be anyone else.

You are lucky in comparison to some, but not so much when compared with others.

ipso's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir wrote: ”and not place too much value in our heritage or place of birth.

Not to be argumentative, but I could not possibly disagree with you more.

Coloma's avatar

It’s the age old question, fate, destiny, karma, random accident.

We could be one spin away from royalty or one spin away from being born a Gopher. lol

@poofandmook

Is that documentary called ’ Born into Brothels’...?

I saw that…very thoguht provoking and sad.

Ron_C's avatar

The reason that district is there and the reason that India has caste systems is because of religion. They figure people that are born in to a low caste or in unfortunate circumstances is that they screwed up in a previous life. The Christians believe that you are born with original sin from which only Jesus can save you from punishment for a sin committed in the remote past by people that could barely traced to you.

Religion helps you rationalize the most horrendous behavior.

Now to answer the question, I realize that I have been extraordinarily lucky and my birth was the most unique event to occur in the history of the world. (Your birth is also a unique event). This is the first time that I considered how my life would have been if I was born in some desolate third world slum. Since it didn’t happen, it can’t happen to me. I also feel the need to do what I can to help people in those circumstances. That research starts now.

poofandmook's avatar

@Coloma: Yes, it is… I’ll be blogging it tomorrow if work isn’t too busy.

ipso's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir Indeed. Those that have, and those that want. Timeless.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@ipso yeah, I don’t think the analogy fits but anyway..

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