The Struggle From Faith To Faith In Night By Elie Wiesel

955 Words 4 Pages
The Holocaust was an event in history that truly tested people’s perseverance and faith. During these times of struggle, many Jews looked to God and their religion. The will of the Jews was tested to the full extent, and those who found the light of hope had a motive to survive. The author of Night, Elie Wiesel, demonstrates his struggle in the transition from faith in God to faith in himself. Although Elie loses faith in the idea of a covenant with God, his focus shifts to a covenant with himself to survive
After witnessing countless acts of barbarism that go unpunished, Elie’s belief in a just God is shaken. On the eve of Rosh Hashanah, a significant night in the Jewish religion, Elie looks to God, reflecting on the horrors and malicious
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He asks him, “What are You, my God...compared to this afflicted crowd, proclaiming to You their faith, their anger, their revolt?” (63). In the quote Elie wonders, how could the Jewish people still pray to God even though He allowed such horrors to be inflicted on his followers? Although many have endured indescribable cruelty, the Jewish people’s proclamation to God “their faith, their anger, their revolt” displays their inner conflict in which they pray to God and simultaneously feel rage towards Him. This torment is a reflection of how Elie is feeling. His anger and inner conflict is the beginning of his transition of focus from religion to himself and his father. Another instance of Elie’s diminishing faith in God is when he witnesses a little boy struggling between life and death on a noose. Elie questions, “Where is [God]? Here He is- He is hanging here on this gallows…” (62). To Elie, the image of the dead boy on the gallows corresponds …show more content…
Elie’s will and faith in himself is tested after long days of marching and running. He fights the temptation to give in to the cold, the Nazis, and to death. However, Elie believes that “[his] father’s presence was the only thing that stopped me… I had no right to let myself die. What would he do without me? I was his only support” (82). Religious people rely on God, but, to Elie’s father, Elie is “his only support.” This illuminates a disappearance of faith, for religious people rely solely on God, rather than a human being. A follower of an Abrahamic religion believes that it is God who determines his fate and future. However, Elie states “I had no right to let myself die,” because he owed it to his father to stay alive. This represents a replacement of God by his biological father. In Abrahamic religions, suicide was forbidden because life was owed to God. Another example of his urge to survive was after the warning air raid. Running for many miles, the prisoners were allowed to take shelter in the freezing snow. Sleeping in snow is a recipe for disaster, leading to one never waking up. Prisoners could no longer withstand the pain and fatigue, and were dying on the spot. Elie, however, felt a sense of resistance. To him, “something within me revolted against this death” (85). Elie exhibits a change in his mentality. Before, he thought from the point of

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