So is the question whether:
a) our basic drives are beyond conscious control, or
b) whether a choice between possible options is predetermined, somehow (e.g. physics), or
c) something else?


I think it's just a lot more basic than that, and I don't think resorting to deep physics really uncomplicates things, let alone offers a solution. I think it's really just about how deliberately we live, and how aware of our motives we are. I'm not preaching to others, just sort of exploring the idea. It seems to me that it's important to not merely be aware of our motives, but also how those motives ended up in place.
I guess maybe my point is that success is just not entirely about victory. How many situations do we see in life where people are competing over something, and the winner ends up totally fucked because all he was focused on was persevering in a competition, and never considered that what they were fighting over seemed worth it because competitors agreed on its value by competing for it.
I think Sun Tzu would agree with me, that success is not just about victory. There's a lot more to it than that. Victory can destroy you. The older I get, there are just so many thing I look back on that I felt were gains and losses, but in the long-term, turned out to be quite opposite, and it literally sends chills up and down my spine in both good and bad ways. I could give examples, it's just that I'm trying not to personalize something I mean to be generalizing.