"The Secret of Redemption Lies in Remembering"
The past two weeks have been filled with sadness and grief. Last week included theMemorial Day for Fallen Soldiers and for the Victims of Terrorism, and the week before that we marked Holocaust Remembrance Day and its dreadful times. Yom Haatzmaut (the Day of Independence) which we celebrated in the last few days is a direct consequence of the previous sad days, and it gains its great strength from the memories. My feeling is that these memorial days are the high point of our national patriotic feelings. They express our stiff-necked national attitude with strength and pride, together with our eternal cry, "The nation of Yisrael lives!" This in a way is more vital than the celebrations of Yom Haatzmaut with its ceremonial character and its flags and barbeques.
I am writing this article soon after Holocaust Remembrance Day, before Memorial Day and the Day of Independence, and I can still hear in my ears the talk of Holocaust survivors who live amongst us. Their horrifying personal memories bring out amazement, appreciation, and wonder: "How could you return to normal lives, at least in external appearance, after the frightening experiences that you had?" The answer that they all gave was: the eternity of Yisrael - the G-d of Yisrael, and the nation of Yisrael. The individual weaved his or her life from the point of view of the community as a whole, and this was their source of strength and life.