Returning Home to Auschwitz

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8 Responses

  1. anon says:

    There’s a Hassidic story about Oscweis (not accurate spelling) where a holy rebbe passes by there and has to quickly leave because there was a very bad energy there, a very bad feeling. This was in the 1800s.

  2. Manny Saltiel says:

    The emotional fall-out you describe is how I felt during and after my first visit to Yad Vashem. In 1984. I wasn’t looking for a connection to my family. But I got a BIG connection to our People.

  3. Raymond says:

    I could be getting this wrong, but here is my understanding regarding nazi Germany vs America. Both adolf hitler as well as American Founding Father John Adams, fully acknowledged that we Jews are the ones who brought moral conscience to the world. The difference between those very different two individuals, is what they did with that piece of information. adolf hitler, in his sick, twisted, thoroughly evil mind, was angry at the Jews for making this contribution. He thought that moral conscience was a very bad thing. He thought it had made people, Germans in particular, weak, and wanted it destroyed among his people, hoping to restore Germany to its previous primitive past where Might makes Right. In sharp contrast, President John Adams had such deep admiration for our Jewish people, calling us the moral conscience of mankind, that he eventually admitted later in his life that if he could live his life over again, he would have spent a considerable portion of it studying our Talmud and other sacred Jewish texts. John Adams, and by extension America, has come to realize what we Jews have known all along, namely that Right makes Might. The nazis dealt with our moral superiority by doing all they could to destroy us, while America has, by and large, appreciated the many contributions that we Jews have given to the world, and has even tried to emulate us, to the point where I have heard it said that middle class American values are essentially Jewish values. G-d bless America, and I for one have no intention of ever setting foot in Germany.

  4. dr. bill says:

    my parents and then infant sister lived adjacent to auschwitz in the city of katowice, where another survivor, over 100 years old, told me what my parents had conveyed, that he delivered 6 industrial strength sewing machines to a factory owned by a young chassidic woman in katowice, my mother, who started the factory before she married my father.

    in a long story, they all survived the war; my sister one of the few of her age to survive from katowice, the first city germany invaded to start the war. my late father received a haunting beracha from the youngest son of the divrei chaim, born to his fourth wife when the rebbe was in his late seventies, the zhliner rebbe, a few days before he was killed by the nazis. i a not a chassid by any stretch of the imagination, but i repeat that beracha often.

  5. Joe says:

    I just visited the graves of my great great grandparents buried in an old cemetery in Queens. As a shomer shabbos descendant, I felt similar feelings to yours in Auschwitz. Continuity.

  6. Elisheva Weyuker says:

    So is your conclusion that it is appropriate and impactful to daven at concentration camp sites?

  7. Mycroft says:

    FWIW I have gone to Yad Vashem many times over almost half a century. The crowds have gotten much larger, not only foreigners, but clear,y hear many Hebrew tours of complex

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