I agree with you, Shane. "A man of respect" once said the following:
"Every man has but one destiny." -Vito Corleone.
Of course he is speaking through Mario Puzo, author of "The Godfather" but personally I found truth in that. As I lived my life it seemed in spite of valiant effort I could deviate very little from my at times somewhat pathetic path. However, if Soul growth counts for anything, I made "giant leaps" in this lifetime.
You are always a good read, Gary. I don't know exactly what to think about life. Sometimes I do, sometimes I do not. Life could, perhaps, be a myriad of destinies overlapping each other. For certain, the deterministic view of reality is absolutely bonkers to me. At the foundation of it all is quite simple; - do we have the capacity to push ourselves or not? Yes, of course, we all go back to Star Wars and hear Yoda saying, "There is no try, only do or not do."
I don't agree with Yoda. To "try" is that state of mind willing to push ones self further than just "doing." Everybody is "doing" all the time, but very few "try" to do something different.