The Grand Tapestry
The most magnificent tapestries in the world are made from small, insignificant threads all following a grand pattern. If even the smallest thread goes off course, the entire tapestry goes awry. God has created a place for each of us in His grand tapestry, and there is no holier act than to follow His pattern.
It determines when you die. It decides whom you will marry. Every twist and turn of your life is part of the Grand Tapestry woven by God. This is the belief of Christians in Europe, but it is echoed by people of various faiths across the world. Everyone knows that fate holds power over the world, and every culture understands fate via its own metaphor. In Christian Europe, that metaphor is the Grand Tapestry. Every person is a thread in the ineffable tapestry of God's design. Most people are small, individual threads of unassuming colours that appear insignificant in the grand scheme of life. This is just the way that inspecting a tapestry close-up reveals thousands of little threads that can't be told apart when standing back. But, when looking at it from above, all these little threads come together to create a greater picture that could never be seen nor understand by a thread within its mix. Do humans have free will? Is the Tapestry an aspiration, or an inevitability? These are thorny theological problems that have divided people for centuries. For Abrahamic religions in general:
- Judaism teaches that there is free will, but also that God has foreknowledge of invents and guides the course of history. This seeming contradiction is the source of much debate among Jewish scholars and has no hard and fast rule.
- Catholicism (including the Oppositionist sect)and the Orthodox Church teach that free will represents satanic influence. Humans are predestined to follow God's path, and only stray from it when lured by the devil
- Islam teaches that humans have free will, but that God, being omniscient, already knows every choice a person will make and wrote fate accordingly (Muslims do not use the tapestry metaphor, instead imagining fate as something written).
- Arbitriumism teaches that humans do have free will, but that this is the result of Adam's fall upon eating from the tree of knowledge. Humans have a Christian duty to make choices that will align with the Tapestry and bring them closer to God.
"To have a golden thread"
This is a common idiom that refers to a person as being especially significant or important to history. It refers to the use of golden thread in tapestries which especially stand out and form important details. Monarchs, great general, or notable scientists are all thought to have "golden" threads, but even lowborn individuals could have golden threads if they are destined to make a small impact with significant ripples.