Taking the Holocaust Discussion to the Next Level

9
8

michael_laitman_1953_square-2 (1) Michael Laitman,   Belarus,   1953

 

The majority of my family was wiped out by the Holocaust. Growing up as a young child in the wake of such a catastrophe impacted my life in a very profound way. After years of searching for answers, I realized that we cannot settle for reminding ourselves and the world what had happened; we should also discuss why it happened. This is the point where I’d like to make a small contribution to the discourse.

Our traditional explanations of rising anti-Semitism, such as economic and social hardships, Jews are easy scapegoats, and jealousy, are all true. However, the reason why they surface is that there is deep, perpetual hatred that is kept alive on the back burner, and until we quench that hatred, it will emerge every time the going gets tough.

In my view, the fundamental reason for hatred of Jews is the lack of solidarity among us. It is not so much what we do or have, but simply that we are disunited. It seems to me that our fate as Jews is to establish a society based on solidarity and mutual responsibility, and to share the principles of that society with the rest of the world.

You would be lucky to find one anti-Semite who does not feel that Jews look out for one another. They fear that the solidarity of Jews will be used against them, and blame us that we’re trying to dominate the media, manipulate American foreign policy, and other accusations. At the same time, the only thing that unites anti-Semites, as the protests during last summer’s Gaza campaign showed, is their hatred of Israel in particular, and of Jews in general.

We cannot prove that we are not united, and even if we could, it wouldn’t mitigate anti-Semitism. We need to do the contrary: show how we unite, and share it with the world.

The one thing that can reverse the social, economic, and political crises ravaging the world is solidarity. Alas, no one knows how to establish it. We, Jews, have that ability latent in our nation’s “genes.” It is the essence of our people. We became a nation when we united “as one man with one heart, ” under the motto “love your neighbor as yourself.” Now we should revive that quality, share it with the world, and become a beacon of solidarity to the nations. This, as I understand it, is the meaning of being “a light for the nations.” If we follow the path of solidarity rather than trying to disprove anti-Semitic libels, we will be able to finally uproot anti-Semitism, and in the process heal many of the world’s ills.

The global rise in anti-Semitism reminds us that what happened in the previous century could happen again if we remain indifferent. It also proves that our current efforts are insufficient. So let us add a new layer of effort by encouraging this discourse about why the Holocaust took place, and especially among the Jewish people who should be most concerned about the current negative sentiment toward them.

***

Michael Laitman is Professor of Ontology and Theory of Knowledge, and has a PhD in Philosophy and Kabbalah, and MSc in Medical Bio-Cybernetics.  His latest book, Like A Bundle of Reeds, explains the root, cause and solution to anti-Semitism.

9 COMMENTS

  1. I fully agree that what happened over 70 years ago could easily happen again with the whole world standing by or actively assisting.
    And the mutual solidarity the article discusses, the unique Jewish role in “Tikkun Olam” can truly change our role of the perpetual victims to the proud “leaders”, saviors of humanity by sharing with them the method of “Love thy neighbor as thyself” through our own positive example.

  2. Look at the relationships among Jews worldwide compared to in previous generations. How divided we are! 

    What this author says is really nothing new, the same is written throughout the writings of our sages – if anyone still reads those. We need to rekindle the warm family feeling that once existed among us.

  3. This news just out: almost half of Israelis fear another Holocaust could happen. This news as Israel prepares to celebrate Independence and Jews worldwide plan Holocaust Remembrance Day events. The situation is dire. I truly hope American Jews will wake up, smell the coffee and support our intrepid family holding down the fort.

  4. To truly turn “Ever Again …” into “Never Again!” will take a
    lot more than memorials and chants.  The
    unfortunate reality is that masses can always be brought together to outshout
    us with “Sieg Heil!” or “Jews out! [of Europe, now “Palestine”] or “Death to
    Israel!”

    However, when one has suffered enough in a chess game that
    seems to be unstoppably approaching check mate, if one will remember that the
    game not only has simple rules of play, but certain meta rules, they can
    finally call upon a miracle called castling to turn the whole game on its head—or
    at least live to stalemate it.  All one
    has to do is, as they say, “pull oneself together” and be “one” with the game.

    We can go beyond stalemate. 
    We can end the game with smiles, pats on the back, and going off with
    our chess students to a never ending stay at the coffee shop.
    “My, but you guys must have some happy matters to discuss—you
    seem to be evermore excited about them!” notes the waitress.  “Can I bring you some different and still
    better dessert than a few minutes ago?”  “Yes,
    miss please, another round for everyone—ever again…”

  5. I’ve read Michael Laitman on the Huffington Post and he spoke about Jewish “unity.” This time he speaks about Jewish “solidarity.” The difference has stuck with me for a couple of days. “Solidarity” has a different connotation than “unity” — don’t yah think? As a Jew, does it “feel” different to imagine solidarity vs. unity?

  6. Y los entendidos resplandecerán como el resplandor del firmamento, ellos son los autores de la Cábala. Ellos son los que ejercen en este brillo, llamado el Libro del Zóhar, que es como el arca de Noé, reuniéndose dos de un mismo pueblo y de siete reinos, en los que las palabras: “Cada hijo que nace será tirado al río” se hacen realidad… Esta es la luz de este Libro del Zóhar. 
    BeHaalotja

Leave a Reply to ZsoltiHermann Cancel reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.