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Eliezer?s Struggle to Keep His Faith in God

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Elie’s faith undergoes tremendous transformation from total devotion to God to questioning the existence of such divine power. In his early age, his life is carefree with Elie’s unmovable faith strengthened by his studies in the synagogue. When asked why he prays to God, Eliezer compares praying with living and breathing. He spent time in the temple with his religious mentor Moshe and constantly studies the Talmud. Eliezer and his fellow prisoners undergo antagonizing experiences the concentration camps. Eliezer wonders why they should be going through immense cruelty and ruthlessness with the existence of supreme power. While at Auschwitz, to say the least, there is a feeling in Eliezer to act against God’s will as faith in Him has decreased. Eliezer

Wonders why God with all His silence regarding the cruelty taking place should be thanked. His situation causes him to question his beliefs.

Many prisoners believe in redemption, but Elie still acknowledged God’s existence though doubting His absolute justice. Throughout his imprisonment, Eliezer loses hope in liberty and God. The trials that job, a biblical figure, went through and by faith emerged victorious cannot encourage Eliezer. In contrast, he sympathizes with Job for believing that God would help him. He ceases to pray and instead sympathies with Job. Eliezer is ashamed of God for allowing them to suffer. With the hanging, of a young man at Auschwitz, Eliezer’s commitment to God suffers a further set back. As he struggled, fellow prisoners wondered where God could have been. During this time, fellow prisoners wonder why God with all the powers could not come to the young man’s help. Eliezer is extremely angry with God and when asked about his whereabouts say He is hanging in the gallows. He ceases to pray as God Has turned a deaf ear on their cries. Eliezer then became the accuser and God the accused. Evil and brutality of the holocaust seriously shakes Eliezer’s beliefs.

Though tested Eliezer manages to keep his faith and leaves the concentration camps with strengthened faith though constantly on the verge of despair. He endures through death, agony, and aggression and is once again free. In the midst of cruelty and pain, Eliezer questions the existence of God. Though Eliezer states that he has given up on God, he continues to think spiritually throughout the holocaust. There is a void in Eliezer’s heart and feels alone, and empty. For example, he regrets that when his father died there were no prayers said at his grave. Though denying his faith, Eliezer still quotes from the bible. He does not understand why God punishes the innocent as if they had committed heinous sins. Eliezer cries out as he quotes the bible. In the end, Eliezer arises from death and turmoil with his beliefs unbroken. Eliezer manages to carry on due to his correspondence with God. As a result of Gods silence on their suffering, Eliezer refuses to fast on Yom Kippur, as he feels this silence is unjust. The prisoner’s conclusion is that God is no longer with them and have thus despaired. Eliezer’s separation from God in a way contributes to his survival. He feels that he is on his own as God Has decided to forsake him. These differences in Eliezer's devotion to God have assisted him to survive through the nightmare as he does not fully rely on God’s help. Ones faith grows through tests time to time. It is the source of hope in time of enormous suffering.

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