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May 24th, 2010
05:33 PM ET

'God must have something specific in mind for me'

From CNN's Sara Sidner in Mangalore, India: It’s puzzling how we human beings can fight so fiercely over our differences, but when it boils down to it we are all so similar. No matter what religion we believe in or don’t believe in, it never escapes me that in life’s most extreme circumstances our differences suddenly fade away and what is left are the simple human traits we all share.

It struck me again when I spoke with a bright young lady from Bangladesh who was about to become a doctor. I was chatting with her as she lay in a hospital bed recounting how she had survived the Air India plane crash that left all but eight people dead. Sabrina was flying alone, preparing to finish her last medical school internship in Mangalore.

When she finally talked to her mom after pulling her badly injured body away from the wreckage, she said, “I must be really lucky and God must have something specific in mind for me later on."

"Otherwise”, she said, “I could have just said, 'You know, I am too tired to get out of this seat.' Especially since my leg was stuck as well. But I just got out because I knew that I have more things to do than sit here. I have better things to do in life.”

I can’t tell you the number of times I have heard similar statements from people of different religious backgrounds than Sabrina, who happens to be Muslim, after a near-death experience.

Even those who are not religious at all talk of fate and perhaps a plan they are unaware of that they must fulfill. In Sabrina’s case her calling seems clear. She wants to heal people. She is now more determined to than ever to do just that. Knowing what it is like to be a patient with multiple injuries gives her new insight into life on the other side of the stethoscope.

She also knows from studying medicine that once you are inside the body, the truth about human beings is revealed. No matter how different we think we are, inside we are all made up of the exact same exact material.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Islam

soundoff (52 Responses)
  1. Will E.

    I despise this kind of magical thinking. God kills a bunch of people and lets some survive because he's got a plan for them? Eff that. He couldn't just whisper in your ear, "Be a doctor" and then give you the answers on your medical finals? All religion is delusion. Leave it behind.

    June 4, 2010 at 3:35 pm |
  2. Fan

    It is funny how people believe in science which keeps changing but forget onething that did not change, GOD.In science what is true one day is false the next. But, ever since human evolution there has been god. If there is no GOD how do we exist. Non believers can call it nature or what ever else, but even for that nature to work the way it does it needs a higher conciousness- GOD. Science calls this nature and belivers call this GOD. In our ignorance we think all we do is because of our own free will or effort. But without GOD nothing ever moves (including this earth). If your free will comes to fruition it is because it happened to match gods will. Right or wrong depends on the perspective. You can see this from history, what was right once is against law now(I dont have to give examples as there are plenty). So we do not have enough information to know if what has happened is right or wrong. And due to lack of evidence you cannot blame GOD for one thing or the other. GOD does not have any hatred towards anyone. Being a beliver does not mean that you need to go pray to GOD everyday. Being GOOD is the GOD in you. I am sure everyone believers and non-believers have the best intentions in their heart voicing out their opinions. That is GOOD (GOD) in them speaking. But if we can help someone in need either here or anywhere else, is the best approach to take in the face adversity, instead of trying to find an answer for something that we can never understand.

    May 30, 2010 at 9:17 am |
  3. Reality

    If you have not already done so, please watch Julia Sweeney's monologue "Letting Go of God". You are one of the "stars" in the show.

    (Ex-Catholic, now atheist) Julia Sweeney's monologue "Letting Go Of God" will be the final nail in the coffin of religious belief/faith and is and will continue to be more effective than any money-generating book or blog on the historical Jesus, the book "Ultimate Happiness Prescription", atheism or secularism.

    Buy the DVD or watch it on Showtime. Check your cable listings.
    from http://www.amazon.com
    "Letting Go of God ~ Julia Sweeney (DVD – 2008)

    Five Star Rating

    May 26, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
    • Lou

      Reality,
      Here is a good read that challenges traditional Christian beliefs – 'The Third Jesus', by Deepak Chopra. The three Jesuses – the one who walked the earth 2000 years ago, the Jesus who has been misinterpreted for the last 2000 years, and finally, perhaps the truth about Jesus through a more non-biased biblical interpretation. The third Jesus, according to the author, was not necessarily God or 'the savior'. He was a savior, perhaps one of many due to his relationship and 'oneness' with the eternal spiritual being.

      May 26, 2010 at 3:38 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.