Shoshana Lavan

The sun will still rise

The sun will still rise... Photo by Shoshana Lavan

On the very night King Duncan gets murdered by another disloyal soldier to whom he gave ‘absolute trust’, a falcon is attacked by an owl, and the horses eat each other. The tragedy of a fearful, powerful and murderous ruler, Macbeth, then ensues.

The day before the election, I was stroking a lovely cat belonging to a dear friend. The cat suddenly became afraid of the two dogs approaching her and without warning bit my arm with such fierce force I wasn’t sure she would let go. That night, our mosquito-less house on the hill overlooking the beautiful view, had a sudden and enormous infestation. I spent an hour and a half killing one after another; our walls now splattered with globules of red and splodges of black: a reminder of my killing spree.

The pain of the bite, the whistling of the mosquitos and the ebbing in of the news the far right were in the lead, all prevented me from sleeping.

For two days I’ve felt as though I’ve been living behind a wall of glass, where nearly everyone else has managed to fully function in spite of the catastrophic results, and I have barely been able to have conversations with my closest friends. But a few have helped enormously. On her Facebook page, Haviva Ner-David quoted the wise and brilliant words of Etty Hillesum:

‘I shall never burden my today with cares about my tomorrow, although that takes some practice. Each day is sufficient unto itself. I shall try to help You, God, to stop my strength ebbing away, though I cannot vouch for it in advance. But one thing is becoming increasingly clear to me: that You cannot help us, that we must help You to help ourselves. And that is all we can manage these days and also all that really matters: that we safeguard that little piece of You, God, in ourselves. And perhaps in others as well.’

Another close friend reminded me, ‘Where there is life, there is hope’.

And my husband has not for one moment shown even a hint of despair. He believes this is simply a sign we need to fight harder for what is right and good.

I thank God every day I am so blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful people who wake up my soul and help it yearn for the light.

I need to start here, in my home, where for some reason twenty four percent of our community did not vote.

In the forest community near where I teach, the young people also didn’t bother to go out and vote.

Then there were all those people who wasted their votes because the leaders of certain parties, selfish little kids who either eat all the chocolate or go in a mood and have none, said they would not share their votes; they would not sign an agreement which ultimately would have stopped the far right from being successful.

Netanyahu and Ben Gvir and Shmotrich remind me of bullies in the playground. No one is standing up to them in a unified way, so they just keep on going.

Yesterday I was so low, I felt God had given up on us, is leaving us to destroy one another. After all history is repeating itself yet again. Surely he/she is fed up of how utterly blind and stupid us humans can be?

Here is the summary of what happened in Germany in 1933:

‘The Nazi Party…registered a large increase in votes… and gained a Reichstag majority together with its coalition partner, the German National People’s Party… This was the first time since 1930 that a governing coalition had held a parliamentary majority. However, despite waging a campaign of terror against their opponents, the Nazis only tallied 43.9 percent of the vote on their own, well short of a majority to govern alone.

This would be the last contested election held in Germany until after World War II. Despite now holding a bare working majority in the Reichstag, Hitler wanted more. Two weeks after the election, he was able to pass an Enabling Act on 23 March with the support of all non-left wing parties, which effectively gave Hitler dictatorial powers. Within months, the Nazis banned all other parties and turned the Reichstag into a rubberstamp legislature comprising only Nazis and pro-Nazi “guests”.’ Wikipedia

Am I comparing Netanyahu to Hitler, to Nazi Germany? Definitely not. But I am comparing our system to theirs. How can it make sense for someone to take the position of prime minister when they’ve not won the majority vote? And what will they do with it afterwards, when part of their government are happy to wage a campaign of terror?

There’s something wrong with our system. There’s something wrong with those who know the difference between right and wrong and yet are too apathetic to do anything about it. And there is something wrong with human nature– the hatred towards the other, the ignorance and intolerance, the way in which men who are evidently monsters are celebrated.

There is an awful lot to do. But as my husband always tells me, I must not despair. The sun will still rise tomorrow.

We will fight and fight and fight until this country wakes up and shows compassion and understanding for everyone who lives here.

In the meantime, the first purple Autumn flowers are appearing in the forest. And they are magnificent.


About the Author
Shoshana Lavan is a published author, high school teacher of English Literature and Language, teacher of English as a foreign language and most importantly, a very proud mother of her gorgeous little boy. She is a peace activist and a committed vegan. A keen runner, she adores the mountains and glorious sunshine in this wonderful country.
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