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vii) One of the greatest tragedies overtook his race and Wiesel’s challenging question was how God dealt with a particular section of humankind atrociously and allowed the perpetrators of the crimes a free hand? Does He often default in dispensing justice?
About the compulsions for writing this book, he argues, “To forget the dead would be akin to killing them a second time.” (p. xv) He and his father were shifted to different camps, and not sure of reaching the destination, each time they thought that it was their final journey. The shifting exercises resulted in fatal casualties of the internees. Describing one such gory incident he stated, “His cold eyes stared at me. At last, he said wearily: I have more faith in Hitler than in anyone else. He alone has kept his promises, all his promises, to the Jewish people”. (p. 80) Wiesel wrote candidly, “Never shall I forget those moments that murdered my God and my soul and turned my dreams to ashes” ( p. 34). When nothing favorable happened, he doubted the existence of God and his merciful Kingdom. He accused God as He was the mute witness to the cruelties of the Nazi forces. The Jews believed till the last moment that God would protect them. Like many others, Wiesel too was trying to find out the religious justification for their suffering, without complaining against the Will of God. But things worsened and Wiesel began to doubt God.
As years rolled by, he began to assert with conviction that some Supreme Power governed the world. Notwithstanding the serious and profound confusion, he transcended the bitter feelings and remained an optimist. He began to feel terribly alone without God. The process of change was taking place in his inner world and from the state of accusing and denouncing God Wiesel began to demand explanations from God for His silence. He covered every issue in His judgment,
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One of the very interesting stories in this compilation is ‘Children of the Sea.’ The crux of the story involves a series of letters between two lovers who were separated by the war. This narrative shows how the male escapes by a boat while the female protagonist is unfortunately caught in their hometown with the parents.
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