Dawn

1202 Words Mar 15th, 2016 5 Pages
Disoriented Faith It is psychologically natural for humans to question faith and spirituality after experiencing tragedy and loss. People may doubt or even reject their faith with God whom is depicted in scripture as a source of peace and security in our lives. In Elie Wiesel’s Dawn, Elisha faces a similar spiritual contradiction after barely surviving the holocaust. After all of his family and friends are murdered by the egregious acts of the Nazi’s, Elisha seems to immediately question the logic behind his faith in Judaism and God. Stemming from his upbringing as an Orthodox Jew, his faith does not merely go away, rather, his understanding of God is reinterpreted into a more extreme outlook that acts as his catalyst for change as he …show more content…
Gad appeals to the frustration of many recruits charismatically saying that: The commandment Thou shalt not kill was given from the summit of the mountains here in Palestine and [Jews] were the only ones to obey it. But that’s all over; we must be like everybody else. Murder will be not our profession but our duty (22).
Using scripture as justification, Gad implies that the commandments are not necessarily applicable laws of God in this case. Likewise, during the last day of training, when a masked man addresses the recruits (assumingly the Old Man), he introduces the men to the so-called- “eleventh commandment: Hate your enemy” (23). An inkling of Elisha’s past interpretation overcomes him at this point as he recalls one of his masters teaching him that it is only the duty of God to take another mans life. Posing an initial self-confliction, these new interpretations ingrained into the mentality of The Movement ultimately overpower Elisha’s previous beliefs, as he continues to kill in multiple operations, each becoming less emotionally impactful than the last. The complete departure from Elisha’s previous set of beliefs is symbolically represented in the assigned execution of John Dawson. Elisha believes that there is something more personal about taking a single man’s life. In the cases of other operations, he had indeed killed other men but assistance from other insurgents eased the responsibility of killing.

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