Elie Wiesel is a Jewish journalist who got the Peace Nobel Prize in 1986. He is a Buchenvald survivor.
In this autobiography he doesn’t write a lot about this hard experience – you can find it in his novel “The Night” – but he writes about his life before and after that.
I was strucked about the story of the village fool, when Wiesel was young. The fool had come back by miracle from a deportation camp and told everybody to run away, not to stay there, not to await Death. But nobody listened to him, because those stories could not be true. Nobody did believe him.
After the concentration camp, Wiesel is a poor stateless person. But he manages to become journalist and, year after year, despite his extreme shyness, to meets and ties strong relationship with important intellectuals.
I do not say that he became rich. I say that he got success: because he did what he loved. He could correct me, now, and say that he did what he needed to: witness. But the result doesn’t change: he had found his way.
We come back to the issue of previous post: not to content yourself. Maslow said, that a poet must write, if he wants to be in peace with himself: this is valid for everyone.
Wiesel got a rich inellectual life through:
- books: he studied all his life long. I may not like Israel, but I like jewish love for books.
- friends. I mean, true friends, who had past, interests and/or religion in common with him. He has chosen his friends (for instance, Mauriac, Golda Meir, Lieberman…). Again: the power of choices!
How I would meet someone who still learns books by heart…