After the Nazis came to power in 1933, they used concentration camps to terrorise Communists and other political opponents. When World War II began, the number of such camps increased greatly. In 1942, the Nazis adopted their monstrous agenda of ridding Europe of all Jews.
The following incident is from one such concentration camp. Two Jewish couples were being held prisoners there. One couple hated everything about the Germans, their guards and their dismal situation, while the other couple was more composed having accepted their fate. When the Germans decided to send them to the gallows, the prison authorities put the first couple to death by their usual system of lots, in which the couple got separated and the man and the woman died alone. However, in the other couple’s case they did a special favour and decided to put them to death together, thus saving them the additional agony of suffering the loss of their dead partner.
The material world has been described in the Bhagavad-Geeta as a place of misery. We get miseries from three sources: From our own mind and body, harassment by others and from natural sources such as excessive heat or cold. Placed in this precarious state, we, as human beings, have two choices: Continue to stay here birth after birth or seek liberation. For liberation we need to seek God’s shelter – the authority who grants such privilege.
How does one do so? For that one needs to be completely surrendered to God, that is one must follow God’s instructions fully giving up one’s own whims and fancies. All acts must be done in ‘God consciousness’, that is in order to please Him only. If one is able to do so, God takes personal charge of such a soul and that person makes progress towards achieving the elusive goal of liberation. Surely such persons shall also encounter the usual difficulties peculiar to this material world, such as old age and diseases, but he or she would never be vanquished in spirit. The Bhagavad-Geeta also informs us that such a person has nothing to fear, he or she shall cross all obstacles, blessed by God.
Thus, one should surrender to God and become fearless. There is no point in fretting over circumstances. So let us embrace them as we go through life.