Cybrary Learning Lab for December 1995

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Online Education

Imagine Peace

Notes from the WebSource

Song of Peace

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PC Computing LogoWelcome to December at the Cybrary. PC Computing picked the Cybrary as one of the top 1001 Sites on the Internet. All due to you, our audience. Thanks.

A Song of Peace

They were just words on a piece of paper…or were they?

Before I get to that, I want to thank all of the people who have made theCybrary in 1995. To Harold Gordon, survivor and author of The Last Sunrise for inspiring the Books by Survivors section; toStuart Nichols, whose virtual tour of Auschwitz provides a moving testimony ofdealing with the Holocaust today and who contributes his HTML skills to put pagestogether. To Joey Korn, who created the Children of Survivors section and whoseenergy with his father’s book, Abe’s Story, has provided an inspiration toeducators to use the Web as a forum of discussion. And finally to the newestfriend of the Cybrary, Louis Brandsdorfer, who created the banners for theViewpoint page and for the New Jersey Statutes page, a grateful thanks forsharing your talents.

To me, all of you are part of a message for peace that keeps me believing. Andin those times when belief is challenged, look around to all the people whostrive to live in peace and tolerance.

Last month the Cybrary had an influx of visitors around the time of YitzhakRabin’s assassination. The specter of hatred spurs on the need to discover, tounderstand something that is not “understandable.”

I’ll remember the image of the paper with the “Song of Peace”, the last songRabin sung, stained with his blood. They may have killed the man, but they can’tkill the message. Peace. It’s so easy to accept being cynical, that there is nochange. Accept that and “Never Again” becomes “Over and Over Again”. Educationtakes time, as does change.

What does this have to do with the Holocaust? Everything and nothing. As YehudaBauer shared with me in an interview, there are the universal and unique aspectsof the Holocaust. The Holocaust was a unique in history. But historians like toequate current events with the Holocaust, making “Holocaust” a code word forcivilization. One that sparks a reaction. But if you focus on the universalaspects, you run into hopelessness, into acceptance that there can be nothingelse.

The universal aspect is an illusion, an attempt to justify. By learning aboutwhy the situation in the Holocaust was unique, we understand more what happened,never why it happened, just know that it did happen. And try not to let ithappen again.

Which leads us back to the Song of Peace. Rabin’s murder has nothing to do withthe Holocaust, but it has to do with creating a world where violence, hatred, andmurder don’t dominate. Where acceptance and tolerance are as praised asbrutality.

Perhaps that world doesn’t exist…yet. But it never will if we don’t keepsinging that same song Rabin sang, the Song of Peace. Forget the hatred andremember the message. To all of you during the Holiday season, a message ofPeace.



Past Issues:

July: CybraryLearning Lab

August: Online Education and Why WeCall This a Cybrary

September:Education asDialogue: Learning With the Web

October: OnlineEducation Begins With You

November: Feedback

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