1000 petals by axinia

the only truth I know is my own experience

The Victory Day or the forgiving power of Russians May 9, 2008

 Фото AFP (© АФП

On May 9 Russia marks the victory over Nazi Germany and the end of World War II with a military parade on Moscow’s Red Square and celebration events all over the country. Victory Day is one of the biggest national holidays and Russians commemorate the 27(!) million victims the Soviet Union suffered in the deadliest conflict in history. Interstingly, most of the Western world is normally not aware of these numbers  – simply because Russian make no fuss about it. The history is the history.
The point I want to make here is that despite the horrible sufferings and the truly huge number of victims, presently Russia and Germany are probably the best friends internationally seen. Apart from the personal friendship beween H.Kohl and B.Eltzin, G.Schröder and V.Putin, the trade turnover figures achieved between Russia and Germany last year were 33 billion dollars, according to Russian estimates. Are there many examples of other countries who had been in such a deadly fight before getting close friends? Unfortunately this is a rare example in the human history if we look at the war map of today… In the international friendship survey 2000 over 60% of Russians speak of their “friendly” attitude to Germans, although almost every family has lost its beloved members in the war. And many of the war generation (like my grandmother) are still there. How could they forget so fast?

The mystery of this fast revival of friendship between Russia and Germany may lay in the FORGIVING POWER of Russians. This rare nationwide quality can be seen also throughout the daily behaviour of the people (see more in my post about Russian Women here).

One possible explanation may be the tradition of the Forgiving Day. It is the original Russian celebraton, combining both Christian and pagan traditions that takes place before some time before Easter. On this day people ask each other to forgive voluntary or accidential injuries and forgive each other with the words: “The God will forgive you!”. Isn`t is beautiful?

I believe that this tradition worked out in the collective consciousness of the Russian people the pattern of forgiveness. The Western propaganda, however, is doing a great job working on the image of the “evil Russians” – thus such precious fact of a nationwide forgiveness are almost unknown to the world. Unfortuntely, since 10 years of my living abroad I have NEVER seen any postive TV /newspaper report on Russia, only negative or neutral ones. No wonder, the folks believe in evil nature of Russians 🙂 But we are not evil! Russian people have a good forgiving heart and a good will.

In my own family this Russian-German realtionships worked out in a truly amazing way: German language is my favourite, I live in Austria (German-speaking), have many Germans as friends, my aunty is a Professor of German and my sister is married to a German (it means my grandma who had to fight against Nazis as a young girl, has a German grand-son-in-law). 

Every time I see the conflict between nations (like Arab-Israel, Afrika, etc.) I ask myself – IS IT TOO DIFFICULT TO FORGIVE? Thanks God, I am born Russian.

LOVE; axinia 



8 Responses to “The Victory Day or the forgiving power of Russians”

  1. […] of the world, because they could destroy the evil image of the Russian enemy… Things like the forgiving power, generosity, Russian women, goodies of the Soviet times, legenary personalities and sweet fairy […]

  2. radha Says:

    i dont know why my parents gave me a name of germanic origin. germanic and german is the same? btw it is really beautiful to notice these transformations in human awareness. may we collect much more of this style in the future!

  3. axinia Says:

    Germanic and German are almost the same 🙂
    may your wishes for the human awareness transformation come true!

  4. Raj Says:

    You’re correct, Axinia. Even my history textbooks did not give the complete picture about the Soviet Union’s role in WWII, though they did mention the importance of the Battle of Stalingrad and ofcourse, the fall of Berlin. Only when I went through different reference books did I learn that Russia suffered enormously in WWI and the Soviet Union played the most decisive role in WWII. Only on the 60th anniversary of WWII(the Great Patriotic War for the Soviets 🙂 ), did I learn that the U.S.S.R. fought the Japanese in Manchuria in WWII.

  5. axinia Says:

    Thank you, Raj! The number of comments on thins particular post says about the popularity and understanding of this topic. I believe there is a huge iron curtain in the heads of the people still to be risen. The reality is much more that the Anglo-Saxon culture can brain wash us…

  6. […] not because they want to hide something, but just because they do not care much. As I mentioned in my earlier posts, Russia has always been a self-sufficient country, doing well at inside-propaganda but not interested […]

  7. […] been an attraction. There are many facts in my biography connected to Germany, I posted some of it here. I believe it is not only for my love to German language, but actually it is my love to German […]

  8. […] from a mess of thouhgts. Forgivenss is a must! I have posted already long ago about the forgiving power of Russians, I am sure it has a lot to do with this beaitful rite that has been practiced collectively since a […]

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