Why do we hate each other so? The hatred of Jews resulted in the Nazis killing more than 6 million of them in the Holocaust. But the world is not a much better place now. Racism in various forms is still prevalent in our societies, including in India. “Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl” gives us a glimpse into the lives of millions of people who went into hiding during WWII and the dire conditions of wartimes. My only regret is that I did not read this book until recently. Shouldn’t history in schools be taught through such real-life stories, instead of just a series of names, dates, and events?
To truly do justice to this book, I would need way more than a short article. However for now, here are a few things I want us to take away from this journal of Anne Frank:
1. Appreciate The Beauty of Nature & Conserve it
“It’s not just my imagination – looking at the sky, the clouds, the moon, and the stars really does make me feel calm and hopeful. It’s much better medicine than valerian or bromide. Nature makes me feel humble and ready to face every blow with courage!”-Anne Frank
Nature can be our salvation in times of need. A starry sky, fresh air and green grass can instantly improve our mood. My son made me realize how beautiful nature is with his awe at the “circle moons, 5-petal pink flowers, the pigeons hopping towards the pool and the orange/purple/pink sky every evening”. However, with the rate at which we are destroying nature, there is not much going to be left for his generation and beyond. I had the incredible opportunity to visit & snorkel at the Great Barrier Reef, but with the recent bleaching effect that is happening I fear if my son will even be able to experience this beauty:( That’s just one example. What are we going to do to save our world?
2. Strive towards an equal world
“One of the many questions that have often bothered me is why women have been, and still are, thought to be so inferior to men. It’s easy to say it’s unfair, but that’s not enough for me; I’d really like to know the reason for this great injustice!” -Anne Frank
With my current feminist tendencies, these words obviously appealed to me. More than 70 years after the death of this incredible yet ordinary young girl, we are still fighting for equal respect, equal pay and equal rights for all. Did you know that according to the Global Gender Gap Report 2016, at the current rate the economic gender gap will not be closed for another 170 years?(if it ever will).
3. Run towards our dreams
“You’ve known for a long time that my greatest wish is to be a journalist, and later on, a famous writer. We’ll have to wait and see if these grand illusions(or delusions!) will ever come true, but till now I’ve had no lack of topics.”
When I reached the end of the book, I knew it was going to end abruptly. But I wasn’t prepared for it. I felt cheated that there were no more chapters in the book, in her life. Anne Frank would have made a great Journalist. Yes, her journal, her diary did make her famous, but she could have authored many more books. A find mind with hopeful dreams, all shattered and no more. Each of us who are alive and well, owe it to those of them whose lives have been prematurely snatched away from them. We owe it to them to create an equal world, to spread love and stop the hate. If we are given a talent, if we have a dream it is our responsibility to go after it. To fulfill it. Because not everyone is given the chance to do so.