Ariel Sharon's son, Gilad: 'All is foreseen, freedom of choice is granted'

What’s the connection between quantum physics and a sheep farmer? There is none but it still applies.

ARIEL SHARON stands on the banks of the Suez Canal in Egypt. (photo credit: REUTERS)
ARIEL SHARON stands on the banks of the Suez Canal in Egypt.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
When two particles become entangled, they continue to influence one another, even if they are separated by space or time.
What’s the connection between quantum physics and a sheep farmer? There is none but it still applies. I’ve seen it. I see it every day. My parents have been gone a long time. It’s been 20 years since my mother left us, and six years since my father took his last breath. But nevertheless they are here with me. I can feel them.
A man and a woman (and all the other accepted models of couplehood today) become entangled, as do parents and their children, and people and their country. The intertwining of a person and their country is created by the landscape, the sounds and the language that form words and thoughts; the smells and tastes particular to your home and family and to the land, the sky and the clouds, the sun that shines down at a certain angle on that land. The intertwining is created by the past, the stories you heard as a child and the songs you sang lustily out of tune.
An ant colony behaves like a single entity. Each ant is like a cell in one body. There is no other purpose or meaning to its life except to function for the good of the colony. That’s extreme for human beings. It didn’t work even in societies that strove for that sort of entanglement, such as radical communism or fascism. Human beings have dreams and aspirations for themselves as well as for the group. But a little of that ant-like solidarity is required in a nation, too. Otherwise, it is no more than a collection of individuals who are incapable of overcoming difficulties or obstacles.
The army is a perfect example. We become entangled with it when we are still children. This isn’t Sparta. We simply have no choice. Your father puts on a uniform, and then your first induction order arrives, and the second, and you’re already wearing a uniform yourself. All your experiences and your friends, along with those who will remain young forever and the families whose world was shattered, are intertwined with you and you with them. And then before you know it, your children are getting induction orders and putting on a uniform.
The laws of physics seem to indicate that there is no such thing as free will. Every atom, every cell in the body, performs as it must at any given point in time, as the laws of physics dictate. And so nothing we do, or even think, dream, or hope for, is a matter of choice. However, the number of variables is so great that it is impossible to predict the result, and so we call it free will.
As the sages said, “All is foreseen, and the freedom of choice is granted,” but only seemingly. A man like my father whose influence on so many people, and in fact, on an entire nation, was so positive – did he have a choice? And does it even matter?
I sincerely hope that every public figure, especially those in the highest positions (and it makes no difference which side of the political map they come from) will choose to work for the benefit not only of themselves, but first and foremost for the nation, just in case the theory isn’t entirely accurate and we do have free will.
Translated from Hebrew by Sara Kitai, [email protected]