Reflections on Holocaust
Mike Ghouse, January 15, 2008
The United Nations has designated January 27th as the Holocaust
Remembrance Day. On this day, in behalf of the Foundation for Pluralism and
the World Muslim Congress, I request us to reflect upon the human sufferings
inflicted by humans through out the world.
We may start out by scribbling a title for each one of the small
and large injustice we have witnessed or learned through news. What did we do
with that information and how did we feel about ourselves? The conflicts
emanating from injustices are rife in Congo, Darfur, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Israel,
Palestine, Pakistan and other places. Please take a moment to reflect upon
the viciousness of the humans, the vulgarity of the few that has
engulfed the innocent bystanders. We have to work towards the idea of “saving
a life is like saving the whole humanity,” says God in Torah and Qur’aan. You
and I exist because someone believed in it before us.
Six Million Jews were brutally murdered simply because of their
faith. Imagine if we were in that situation, ruthlessly packed in a rail car
along with 100 other humans to be thrown in gas chambers. The helplessness
and the humiliation should have been palpable, but the world stood by
silently finding bliss in self designed ignorance. If it happens to us we
feel like tearing the world apart.
The world reacted belatedly, thank God; the evil plan of
the Nazis did not materialize. We said, never again and we keep falling short
on our own promise. It is time to reflect if our hearts can feel the pain and
if our minds can do something about it. We should visit the holocaust museum
in our area; it will upload humanity into us, it is good to be a human again
Our hearts and minds are endowed with a sense of justice, and
whenever we see that balance disturbed, we react to it with anger,
helplessness and distress. Religion and common sense have taught us to regain
that balance by taking an action, least of which is to speak up. Our
minds work mysteriously, the act of seeking balance and justice relieves us
from the anguish and gives us a sense purpose in life that we stand for
If my actions and words aggravate a conflict, then I have become
a contributor toward chaos, on the other hand if my words and actions
mitigate the conflict, I become a peace maker. Peace has got to be
unconditional without any score keeping, “do your duty without the greed of
results”, says the Bhagvad Gita.
No one is an island; we have to develop an open mind and an
open heart towards each other in the process of healing and repairing the
world. We should short change our humanness by thinking that we were not
responsible for it.
We should honor our divine
instructions to demur and honor the suffering of others. It will
be a day for all of us to reflect upon and promise ourselves "never
again" and hope each one of us makes a commitment to oneself to speak
out against any injustice.
If we can learn to accept and respect
the God given uniqueness of each one of the 7 billion of us, then conflicts
fade and solutions emerge. The healing and recovery for Humanity can
only occur when we each examine our own hearts, our own
cultures and our own faith traditions to discern where seeds of
prejudice, cruelty and even genocide remain hidden.
A Good deed is creating peace,
security and balance for all creation. The wisdom of Bible is crystal clear
“do unto others as you would want others to do to you”. Indeed, that is
essence of all religions.
This is an invitation to people of all backgrounds to reflect
upon the tragedies humans have endured, and bring about a
change, however little we can. The least we can do is to speak up
whenever we see injustice or words and actions that promote chaos.
In 2006, the United Nations proclaimed January 27th as a
Holocaust remembrance day to commemorate the worst atrocity
the world had ever witnessed. In support of that, the Foundation for
Pluralism and the World Muslim Congress organized an event on Thursday,
January 26, 2006 to accommodate the Jewish Sabbath as January 27 fell on
a Friday in 2006. For more information please visit:
I request you to pray and mourn for the massacres and deaths of
all human beings. I beg you to forgive me if I have missed a tragedy that you
are familiar with. I admire you if you could send me a 100 word description
or a link from a news paper to be included in the comments.
If you felt sorrow for some and not for the others, please check
out your peace meter for your bias and prejudices against groups, nations,
ethnicities, religions, cultures or races. Higher the prejudice lesser the
peace and vice versa.
You can increase your peace and happiness by repenting in your
solitude for your biases and see the meter start rising, and when you
actually do not feel any bias toward any human, see the mercury miracles.
Finally if you can volunteer one hour a week for people you don't know or you
did not like in the past, you can be the happiest person on the earth.
God guarantees that and I will underwrite it. Ha! Try it, it is effortless
and won't cost you a dime but gain you happiness.
May God help us become prejudice free,
May God give us the guts to speak up when we see wrongs,
May God remove arrogance from us and
May God bless us with the humanness to feel the pain and sorrow
Please pray (wish it, if you are an atheist) and invoke the
goodness in each one of us.