Does Destiny Preclude Free Will?

They should be mutually exclusive, right?

Adrian Eaton
3 min readFeb 8, 2024

If humans have free will, does that mean destiny doesn’t exist?

If we all have a destiny, then do we really have free will?

Is it possible destiny and free will can coexist?

Destiny and free will have an interesting relationship. We seem to experience both simultaneously, but in theory one should preclude the other.

We’re told to “fulfill” our destiny… but shouldn’t it just happen to us without any effort?

My favorite quote that captures our struggle with this duality is:

“One often meets their destiny on the path they take to avoid it.”

Someone might strive to live their life without regrets and subsequently decide to avoid any potentially dangerous or threatening experiences — never traveling to foreign countries or committing to relationships — ultimately regretting the lack of texture in their life. Someone else might also strive to live life without regrets and subsequently decide to engage in all sorts of dangerous activities — and they might regret some physical or emotional injury or a wrongdoing on their part.