Yom HaShoah 2014 – Lessons We Can All Learn

This year, April 27th and 28th were when we participated in Yom HaShoah. It is the  day on the Jewish calendar marked specifically to remember the Shoah, also known as the Holocaust. The entirety of last week was also devoted to remembrance of the Shoah in the form of “Holocaust Remembrance Week”.

The Shoah was one large, terrible tragedy that made up the bigger tragedy that was the Second World War. The political, social, legal, scientific, and technological world shifted because of the aftermath of this war. Generations were forever marked by the loss of freedom, loss of life, and loss of hope.

Not that we should need a day, as its lessons should always be with us. What lessons are those? To seek justice. To be vigilant against corruption and injustice. To honor life. To treat others with respect. To promote peace. These are the issues that frequently take a backseat to capitalism and sometimes, even to comfort. It’s easy to say that the violence that goes on in another area of the world isn’t our problem. That genocide will get taken care of by someone else. To say that our effort cannot make a difference.

The Shoah reminds us what price is paid when millions stand by and let it happen. That when we aren’t vigilant about teaching peace and equality to our children, society can easily indoctrinate them toward discrimination and violence.

I am also reminded that the entire point of faith, or what should be the point of faith, is to compel us to be better people and to ultimately make the world a better place. So if our religion is not promoting more peace, more justice, more equality, more hope…then what’s the point? Faith should not be the stick we wield to promote our own agenda; instead it should be the lamp that guides us toward the greater good.

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About Lynn Swayze

Lynn Swayze is a writer, IT professional , and mother of four. She was raised Southern Baptist, but began questioning her faith before she became a teenager. She is currently converting to Judaism. Email her at lynnswayze {at} gmail {dot} com, or connect on Facebook or @Following_Ruth or @LynnSwayze.