I believe we have limited control over our future but I wouldn’t call it “destiny”, as I don’t really believe in that sort of thing. Circumstance defines the way I see the world around me. My existence (as well as the existence of everyone and everything else) I attribute to many random factors coming together. When and where I was born, the way I look, my strengths and weaknesses, my beliefs and values, are all the results of circumstances which are beyond my control. Beyond anyone’s control in some cases. I do think that in America we are given control over the path we want to take in life. We can choose what path(s) to take, but what will happen down the road is beyond our control. How we handle what gets thrown at us is what should be emphasized, as we do have control of that. On the other hand, a lot of how we do what we do is influenced by our circumstances. Had I been born in a different area, with a different skin color, with parents of a different career, with two X chromosomes, or anything else I would be a different person entirely.
“Take but degree away, untune that string,/And, hark, what discord follows” – Troilus and Cressida