here is a sentence i never thought i would write: last month i visited the auschwitz-birkenau museum for the third time.

realizing that most people will never visit it once, a third visit could almost be considered an indulgence. but considering this was my fourth missions trip to poland, and for those we traveled with who have never been, skipping it simply wasn't an option.

but even given the number of times i have been there, this is the first time i am able to write anything more than a few words about it. the first time that the magnitude of hatred and madness hasn't left me feeling overwhelmed and helpless. the words of theoden from LOTR: the two towers almost echo through the bunkers...
what can man do against such reckless hate?
* * * * *

as you walk into one of the first buildings on the tour, the words of george santayana greet you:
those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.
i didn't see this quote anywhere in the museum, but the words of edmunde burke seem to fit here perfectly:
all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.
we need to remember these things, no matter how hard they are to recall. we need to remember them so that the next time we are confronted by injustice and evil, we will be compelled to act, no matter how small that action may seem. it may not be genocide, but forced slavery, prostitution, and the madness of extreme poverty need to be met with more than an overwhelmed indifference.

we must remember that our inaction allows the wrong side to win.

yes, the issues may be vast and almost incomprehensible, but if every one of us who has the ability, the income, the voice, to do something, the problem of injustice facing our world might be a little less intimidating tomorrow. and when tomorrow comes, we need to be ready to do what must be done then.

how different our world would look if we loved recklessly?

or wouldn't you love to see the LOTR quote turned around...

what can evil do in the face of such reckless love?


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