It's not upbeat and rib-tickling, but the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz gave us another chance (did we need one?) to reflect on the nature of evil in a world that God created as good.
The following is excerpted from an article in the Wall Street Journal on Jan. 27, 2005, written by Berel Lazar, the Chief Rabbi of Russia.
"When remembering the tragedy of the Holocaust, as world leaders will today at the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, we are faced with the eternal question: Where was God?
No mortal can ever attempt to explain God's mysterious ways. As the prophet Isaiah tells us in the name of God: "My thoughts are unlike your thoughts." However, what we can say is that when humans suffer God suffers as well, even more than a parent for a child.
Yet God gave man free will to change the world for the better, and we must say that our independence is so vital that it outweighs the profound pain resulting from man abusing his free choice to hurt his fellow man. It is clear to me that 60 years ago God was surely watching and waiting for an answer to an even more important question: Where is man?
Where is man who can differentiate between good and evil, who has the power to act and create? Where is man who understands the sanctity of human life, and why is he not crying out at its desecration?"
This is brief and eloquent, and reflects what I was trying to express in my very first blogpost, the tsunami-inspired argument for God and man's goodness that I couldn't let go until writing it down.
Perhaps I'm channeling my inner Jewishness. Who knew?