Voice/Vision Holocaust Survivor Oral History Archive

Martin Koby - April 20, 1999

Thoughts on God

Have you complained since the war, to God?

I think I did.

You did?

But I, I--not sincerely. I'm angry at him. What--why did he choose us to be killed off? I thought we were chosen especially for something. And it's a guy I should love? How can you complain to a guy that uh, you know, let me tell you something, I have this dual feelings, you know. I go to Shul during the week, in the morning. But it's not because...

You, you do--you...

I'm religious, because I don't uh, really a faithful--faithful to God, to our Jewish God. It's to keep the faith going, I think. Maybe it's my stupid way of doing things, you know?

Where do you go?

I go to the Jewish Center, where they, they have a minyan there.


But I don't have the guts to go there on Saturday, because I don't observe Saturday, Sabbath, like, it's an Orthodox--supposed Orthodox...


...occasion. I work on the Sabbath, okay? I'm not strictly kosher. And I feel--I'm more comfortable going to Temple Israel on Saturday.


I get in the car and I go there. I feel fine. They wear yarmulkes. If I remember the yarmulke, I put it on. If I don't, I, I really don't have much faith in my God or our God.

Did you ever read Job?


The Book of Job. Hm. Elie Wiesel says that um, during the Holocaust, he saw Job all the time. It's uh, it's a question of um, uh, undeserved suffering, is the--is what the Book of Job is about. And Wiesel says he--every morning he would get up and he would see all the--everybody there was--to him was like Job, because they were in Auschwitz. It's a disturbing book.

I grew up in a little community. Although we were religious, my religious education was very limited. Okay? All the--we used to--our Hebrew education came from part-time teachers you know, there to be...


...for the summers. And during the year sometimes, sometimes you know, they found somebody that would--and you were always--after school--you went to public school, you came to home and uh, I can understand my kids didn't want to go to Hebrew school you know, because they put in a day of work over there at school.

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