Monday, 19 November 2012

Of Anne Frank a Remarkable Lady

I've just finished the wonderful Anne Frank's diary. I first read her diary when I was about 14. I said then that it was my favourite book of all time and today many years on it's still in my top 3. This time I struggled to make it to the end for no other reason than because as you turn those last few pages you know the fate that awaited her.
I'm still struggling to know why it is that this was never required reading at school when totally inaccessible books including "She Stoops to Conquer" and "The Merchant and Venice" were.
Not only was Anne Frank blessed with a beautiful ability to articulate what she was both noticing and feeling but she was also full of boundless optimism and hope which, I suppose, makes her diary all the more tragic.
Here's what she records about how to deal with melancholy :
"I lie in bed at night, after ending my prayers with the words "Ich danke dir fur all das Gute und Liebe und Schone (thank you God for all that is good and dear and beautiful"), and I am filled with joy. I think of going into hiding, my health and my whole being as das Gute; Peter's love (which is still so new and fragile and which neither of us dares to say out loud), the future, happiness and love as das Liebe; the world, nature and the tremendous beauty of everything, all that splendour as Schone.
At such moments I don't think about all the misery, but about the beauty that still remains. This is where Mother and I differ greatly. Her advice in the face of melancholy is : "Think about all the suffering in the world and be thankful you're not part of it". My advice is "Go outside, to the country, enjoy the sun and all nature has to offer. Go outside and try to capture the happiness within yourself; think of all the beauty in yourself and in everything around you and be happy".

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