Auschwitz

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I’m actually not quite sure how to even express my visit to Auschwitz I and II. I have heard and read about and seen movies that depict and explain the terrible atrocities that happened here, but it is a completely different moment to actually stand there, visit, walk around and see it. I felt somewhat removed from my wanderings there as I felt a need to protect and guard my heart from actually feeling too strongly. I wanted to be present to what I was seeing, sensing and hearing. So many people were murdered, brutally and on such a mass scale that it is still so evil and incomprehensible. Everything was so planned and calculated by the Nazis and Hitler’s regime that I think it just can’t be taken in mentally. I almost started sobbing when I entered the  room full of  hair that had been shaved from the dead bodies after they were gassed. Tons and tons of human hair was cut off of the prisoners’ heads and then sent back to Germany to be used in the manufacturing of soldiers’ uniforms. It even sickens and churns my stomach to write. The planning and layout of Auschwitz-Berkenau II was overwhelming; standing in the guard tower and looking out over the expanse of land and buildings and crematoriums built with the sole intent and purpose of murdering people was too much to take in. In all of this, though, I am glad that I went. I really don’t know where to put it, this experience. I don’t know that there is anywhere.

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Jen says:

    >Strange to see that sign twice in one week…A man named Elie Wiesel was on Oprah the other day. He is a holocaust survivor and has written a book about it called _Night_. He and Oprah went to Auschwitz together and they showed some clips of their time there. Yes, the whole thing is truly horrifying.

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