Night Review Page 3

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  • Review

Page 3

  • Moishe
    • Beadle – caretaker of the synagogue
    • No surname – no true identity, recognition as a man
    • “jack of all trades” (master of none): he knew a lot about many things, but no true religious education, uneducated- Eliezer goes to him for education
    • Why was he the exception to the rule regarding how the poor were treated by the majority of the Jewish community?


  • Anaphora
    • Repetition of a word, or phrase, for emphasis
    • List of what he did that gave him acceptance from the adult community.
      • “He stayed out of people’s way”. “His presence bothered no one”. “He had mastered the art of rendering himself insignificant, invisible”.
        • This is what the Nazi’s are counting on to destroy the Jewish people.
        • IRONY: Later when Moishe returns.

Eliezer’s view of Moishe

  • Softness in his tone. Childlike images
      • Simile: “awkward as a clown” – circus
      • “his waiflike shyness” – child who needs protection; orphan; sweet; no conflict.
      • “wide, dreamy eyes, gazing off into the distance” – childlike imagination (this will later influence Eliezer as to the credibility of Moishe’s claims)
      • “He spoke little. He sang, or rather he chanted”
        • Religious themes – Shekhinah in Exile; Kabbalah
  • Eleiser – 13 years old; deeply observant; bar mitzvah age. Influential age
  • Following all the rules and laws of his faith.

Page 4

  • Influence to begin independent thoughts; mysticism of the Kabbalah.
  • His father wants him to be more educated. Protective father.
    • “You are too young for that. Maimonides tells us that one must be thirty before venturing into the world of mysticism, a world fraught with peril. First you must study the basic subjects, those you are able to comprehend.” “There are no Kabbalists in Sighet.” “He wanted to drive the idea of studying Kabbalah from my mind.”
    • A little bit of knowledge is a dangerous thing. Important to know the basics before developing an intellectual understanding of religious practices and beliefs that may be flawed. Prevents confusion – or at least is a step in the right direction.
    • (grandmother) (father – bird)
  • Father well respected by the community; however, no father/son discussion when questioned. Eliezer then goes on his own quest of his faith through Moishe. Parents often make this mistake. “I am your father/mother, trust what I say without question.” This oftentimes causes rebellion. – good/bad.
  • Maimonides –Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon – first to write a code of Jewish law all must follow. Mishneh Torah

Page 4 & 5

  • Begins to ask questions. Why? Why? Why?
    • It is always good to ask questions. From that, we attain knowledge; critical thinking skills; ability to differentiate between what is truth and fallacy.
  • Is challenged by Moishe. Why? Why? Why?
  • “Why do you cry when you pray?” Challenges his faith. Does he do it out of rote? – mechanical repetition, without real understanding of its meaning or significance.
  • Repetition of “Why did I pray? Why did I live? Why did I breathe?”
  • Eliezer accepts his ignorance. Hard thing to do for anyone. We don’t like to admit that we are wrong. Then, we must admit that we are NOT PERFECT!
  • Moishe knows why he prays: “I pray to the God within me for the strength to ask Him the real questions.”

Quick Write #2

  • Moishe challenges Eleiser’s understanding of his faith through the quote:
  • “There are a thousand and one gates allowing entry into the orchard of mystical truth. Every human being has his own gate. He must not err and wish to enter the orchard through a gate other than his own. That would present a danger not only for the one entering but also for those who are already inside.”
    • Analyze this quote. What does Moishe mean? What is the orchard of mystical truth? What are the gates?
      • 250 words

Page 6

  • “Moishe the Beadle was a foreigner.”
  • “Crammed into cattle cars.”
    • Hungarian police
    • Influence of Germany over Hungary so far
    • “cried silently” - try to be insignificant; invisible, don’t fight back….accept…accept.
    • Not happening to us..just the foreigners…value?
    • “What do you expect? That’s war..” too accepting
      • USA – Japanese
      • Long Beach
      • For their safety
      • Paranoia

Hungary’s Part

  • While anti-Jewish legislation was a common phenomenon in Hungary, the Holocaust itself did not reach Hungary until 1944.
  • In March of 1944, however, the German army occupied Hungary, installing a puppet government (a regime that depends not on the support of its citizenry but on the support of a foreign government) under Nazi control.
  • Adolf Eichmann, the executioner of the Final Solution, came to Hungary to oversee personally the destruction of Hungary’s Jews. The Nazis operated with remarkable speed: in the spring of 1944, the Hungarian Jewish community, the only remaining large Jewish community in continental Europe, was deported to concentration camps in Germany and Poland. Eventually, the Nazis murdered 560,000 Hungarian Jews, the overwhelming majority of the prewar Jewish population in Hungary.

Page 6

  • Time gives way to forgetting what happened.
  • Rumors – Galicia, working, content..yes. Went to Galicia…BUT….
  • Weather is pleasant; back to normal
  • Moishe returns
    • Tells them the truth
    • “forced to dig huge trenches…..took place in Galicia.”
    • Character of the German soldiers

Page 7-8

  • Moishe
    • Joy in his eyes gone
    • No longer sang
    • No longer quiet
    • “Jews, listen to me! That’s all I ask of you….
    • “They think I’m mad,” ….tears, like drops of wax…
      • Simile; candle melting; moving from the light into the darkness of Hell to come
      • Christ-figure: Anaphora: “I was saved….I…I…I…only no one is listening to me…” Light of the World – warning of the evils of Satan. Do we listen? They refuse to see the light of truth. They ostracize him; reject him totally as a member of their community.
  • Becomes silent.
    • Beaten
    • Eyes cast down; avoiding people’s gaze
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