One has heard of characters in a story. And the character of people. But character of Life? Does Life has a character of its own?

Like the individual and society, Life too has what may be called a character of its own. Life can be described in terms of the characteristic ways in which events occur, repeat, reverse, and the factors that determine the results and consequences of human action. We often perceive and label the characteristic actions of life with terms such as chance, luck, fate or destiny. Knowledge of the character of Life gives us mastery over this chance, luck, fate, destiny, and  LIFE.

Life is governed by subtle laws and principles of action and reaction that characterize the interaction between the thoughts, feelings and acts of the individual, society and universal nature. Great literature is true to life, and it can be studied to reveal these laws and principles. An in depth study of Pride and Prejudice reveals these laws here.

Take the case of initiative. It is a law of life that initiatives by those in a higher plane of life (i.e. with greater wealth, status or power) toward those in a lower plane tend to be readily and richly fulfilled, provided the lower is a willing recipient and does not raise obstacles or resistance to receiving. Other initiatives generate results with lesser or greater difficulty. They meet with resistance in the measure the initiatives involve an upward movement or require energy and capacity beyond the endowments of the individuals involved. So Collins cannot marry Elizabeth, but he can marry Charlotte. Wickham can elope with Lydia, but not with Georgiana. Bingley can get Jane, not Georgiana. All of Mrs.Bennet's initiatives fails, but all it takes Charlotte to get Collins is three days plus a morning walk.

Initiatives may receive unexpected support from life when they are aligned with new movements that are gaining momentum. Initiatives may meet with unexpected resistance when they are aligned with movements that are passing out of existence. Lady Catherine’s efforts to marry her daughter Anne to Darcy meet with resistance and ultimately fail. Lady Catherine seeks to capitalize on the mutual pledge of her sister and herself that their children should marry, a practice whose value is passing out of existence. The social will is seeking to reinvigorate the aristocracy and that movement takes precedence over Anne’s personal connections. The light in Eliza’s eyes is enough to overcome the best-laid plans of the older generation to perpetuate itself in the old style. 

A study of every character's initiative, and and why one succeeded and another failed reveals to us the key to accomplishment. Another interesting study is the act. Each act is the expression of a force that tends to repeat itself. The greater the intensity of the force and the more times it repeats, the greater its capacity for further repetition. The quality and intensity of the force express in each subsequent repetition of the act. The very fact that the seeds of four marriages are being sown at the same time is an act of repetition. When Mrs. Bennet first asks Mr. Bennet to call on Bingley, Bennet protests and apparently refuses, but the next day he goes in deference to her request. When Bingley becomes interested in Jane, his sisters and Darcy protest, though ultimately they all accept Jane as his wife. Bennet’s initial protest is mirrored by their own. The vibration of protest continues and ripples through the story. His initial reaction is a portent of the reactions that come later.

As each act is a force, it has a tendency to repeat. However, when the force of the act is insufficient for repetition or meets an obstacle that prevents it from accomplishing in a particular direction, the energy of the act may reverse course and express in a direction opposite to the original act. Mrs. Bennet takes pleasure in triumphing over Lady Lucas with the prospect of Jane’s early marriage to Bingley. When Collins proposes to Charlotte, Lady Lucas called often at Longbourn in triumph to take revenge on Mrs. Bennet. The sense of triumphing reverses direction. Darcy conceals Jane’s presence in London from Bingley. At Rosings Fitzwilliam unintentionally reveals to Eliza Darcy’s interference between Jane and Bingley. The original act of intentional concealment gets reversed as an act of unintentional disclosure.

Acts and events that occur at the same time are related at the level of life, no matter how unconnected they appear on the surface. The relation sometimes reveals later on as a physical connection between people or events. Often it represents a psychological parallel between the thoughts or attitudes of different people that only reveals to a careful observation. But regardless of appearances, simultaneous events are always related. When Wickham visits Longbourn, Caroline’s letter arrives announcing Bingley’s departure from Herefordshire. When Wickham turns his interest from Eliza to Miss King, the Gardiners invite Eliza for a summer tour that takes her to Pemberley and Darcy. Wickham represents a disruptive vibration that destroys marriages. The moment Eliza moves closer to him, Bingley and Darcy move away. When Wickham later moves away in pursuit of Mary King, seeds are planted for the future meeting of Eliza and Darcy at Pemberley.

The outcome of a chain of events is indicated at the very beginning, though the meaning of that indication may not be evident. One clear indication of the outcome of this story is the chance meeting of Eliza, Darcy, Jane, Bingley, Lydia, Wickham and Collins in Meryton shortly after Jane’s return from Netherfield on Collins’ first visit to Longbourn. Darcy and Bingley are on their way to Longbourn to inquire whether Jane has fully recovered from her illness. All but Darcy are meeting Wickham for the first time. Collins is a stranger to all but his cousins. Yet, at this moment, a future family comes together. By the end of the story, all seven will be related to each other through marriage.

Read a detailed study of the character of life as revealed in Pride and Prejudice here.

Click here to view articles and video clips on the theme of romance and marriage in Pride & Prejudice