History as Guide

Commentary by Dr. Ursula A. Falk


Bist du Anvil sei geduldig, Bist du Hammer schlage drauf

 (If you are an anvil be patient, if you are a hammer hit/pound)


This is a saying which tells a great deal abut that which is and that which is not and  what can or cannot be done.  If you are in the correct position, you can carry out  actions, behaviors, and expressions which are not advisable or possible to others.  You have to have the means to purchase what you need and want.  If not, you must use what you have or be without.  If you are wealthy, you can do more than your impoverished neighbor. If you own the business you are the boss, as employee you must do what you are told.  Power comes with knowledge, with ownership, with a special personality, and with support from significant people.  Personality traits are very important in determining who will and who will not achieve a particular goal.  Hitler was an unusual example of an individual who came from a poor family, was not raised with silken gloves and soothing, gentle parental figures. His personality was of such a nature that he was able to have a whole nation follow his pathological, tyrannical demands.  He was able to fabricate sadistic pleasures for his followers and annihilate those whom he hated and condemned without the proverbial “rhyme or reason.”  He was a master of fabrication and was able to convince a whole nation to satisfy his sadistic needs regardless of the cost.  There are always the Hamans and the Hitlers in the world and fortunately they are in the minority.

Ordinary human beings must decide who they are, their “station” in life, their background, can they or can they not accomplish what they want or what their status in life will be. 

As Jewish people we must remember our past and what is feasible and what is not.  Our actions should be very much guided by our knowledge of history, of the past.  We must not allow ourselves to be denigrated and continue to become “Untermenschen” (underlings) cowering to the majority.  We must not “bow and scrape” to our enemies, our opponents.  We have been falling into the underling trap much too often.  When we behaved like lemmings, we became lemmings.  We believed ourselves to be the “chosen” people.  Chosen for the Hitlers, the Stalins, the sadists, the psychopaths of the universe.  We have learned a great deal from our brave Israeli brothers and sisters.  They do not stand still to allow the Arabs to destroy them like sheep.  They are not the anvil but the hammer.  If they are attacked they fight back.  They are deaf to the edicts of those who would destroy them and have learned from history what the results are of responding to the pathological needs of sadists.  We have been masochists for eons of centuries. We must stand together with those who accept us as equals and we must not agree with those who defile us and fabricate fables about us, using prejudice to justify their anger, their hostilities.

Let us appreciate those of our fellow men who are just and realistic and let us never be deceived by those who would harm us.  Let us be proud of who we are not agree with the falsehoods of our antagonists!


 Dr. Ursula A. Falk is a psychotherapist in private practice and the author of several books and articles.

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