Reflection on human suffering and in relation to Night (Essay Sample)
instructions and required books are attached below. Pleas keep at a medium english level Thanks
Religious Studies Reflection Paper
Choose one of the following and write a 3-4 page response. Include at least three quotes from eitherThe Heart of Understanding, Bhagavad-Gita or Night. You do not need to include a biography or do further research (although you may if you wish to), rather, the focus is on careful study, analysis, and elaboration of ideas presented within the texts with some support from assigned secondary readings. It is often helpful to focus on one or two ideas, passages, or paragraphs and consider the ramifications thereof.
- Eliezer expresses sympathy for Job, the biblical figure who experienced horrendous loss and illness as Satan and God engaged in a debate over Job’s faithfulness. After watching the lynching and slow death of a young boy, Eliezer tells himself that God is hanging from the gallows as well. In his Nobel lecture, Wiesel describes the Holocaust as “a universe where God, betrayed by His creatures, covered His face in order not to see.” How does Wiesel’s understanding of God change throughout the book? How did the prisoners in Night, including rabbis, reconcile their agony with their faith? What might Thich Nhat Hanh say to the young Eliezer as he faced the horrors of the Holocaust?
- What do you think about Krishna's argument that the immortality of souls makes killing less problematic? Is it possible to read this text, as Gandhi did, as an argument against violence and if so how? What would Thich Nhat Hanh say about this argument?
- We identify our actions (good ones and bad ones alike) with ourselves, and insist that we and others "take responsibility" for what we do. Deeds, we say, entail consequences and reveal character. What does the Bhagavad-Gita say about such a viewpoint? How does this compare with the views in Heart of Understanding?
- What does the Bhagavad-Gita have to say to Eliezer in Night? How do both texts look upon suffering and the connection to the divine? Gandhi read the Bhagavad-Gita over and over again as he struggled for India’s independence, what solace if any would the Bhagavad-Gita offer to Eliezer? Why?
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Reflection on human suffering and in relation to Night
God is all powerful and believers argue that He would not allow individuals to suffer the way they do in life. However, we see Job suffering undeservedly in the bible. The book of Job in the bible can be explained as a theodicy which is said to be the defense of righteousness, justice, integrity of God in light of injustice, evil, and undeserved suffering in the world (Mishra, 2004). Job is used to portray the human suffering and the suffering of the innocent, for example, Eliezer says â€œI shall never forgive myself. Nor shall I ever forgive the world for having pushed me against the wall, for having turned me to a stranger, for having awakened in me the basest, most primitive instincts,â€ (Pp16).We see Eliezer expressing sympathy because of the suffering he undergoes together with his family.
It is very difficult to understand why a faithful man of God has to undergo sufferings. This has lead to some people changing their understating of God in their life. A good example is Wiesel, who describes the Holocaust as a universe, where God betray his people. Wiesel argues that, first, God might be no all powerful and thus cannot prevent our sufferings, or secondly, God does not love at all and as result, he does not care about love, and lastly, God might not be there since he is both incapable and uncaring; since he is imaginary. The understanding of God is not simple; Wiesel tries to understand the things happening around him all in vain and I quote, â€œNever shall I forget that night, the first night in camp that turned my life into one long night seven times sealed. Never shall I forget that smoke. Never shall I forget the small faces of the children whose bodies I saw formed into smoke under a silent sky,â€ (pp. 22). This shows that Wiesel is really disturbed with what is happening around him; communities and families are separated and tear apart, murder case and lots of suffering. Many people are heart broken in their life.
Wiesel seems not to believe in God and his unbelief is guided by the above rationale. He has dismissed God in his life because he thinks he is irrelevant, lack power to affect his circumstances, and he feels God does not love at all (pp. 23). He has gone to the extent of hating God; he feels He is using his power at a disinclination to use it for his relief. He does not understand the nature of God.
On the other hand, many prisoners are rooted in the Jewish rituals during their holidays...
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