The Living History Forum is a new, unusual and unorthodox Swedish public authority in Stockholm with issues on tolerance, democracy and human rights from both a national and international perspective. The Holocaust, crimes of communist regimes and other crimes against humanity are being dealt with.
European citizens have to know the past to understand the (European) present and future. The Forum seeks to oppose the lack of respect for equal values for all. Where democracy is abandoned, each society and country contain a potential breeding ground for people to persecute and to be persecuted, to murder and to be murdered, to imprison and to be imprisoned. Shortly, democracy can and may never be put into perspective. Ideologies, nor religions can commit crimes independently. They are systems of ideas, faith or belief.
However, indiviuals, collectives and states that have defined themselves with a certain ideology or religion have commited crimes in name of that ideology or religion, now and in the past. An ideology or religion is not an actor that can perputrate crimes against humanity, but it can legitimize and has legitimized the perpetration of crimes by placing these crimes in the context of a viewpoint that has rendered them understandable, acceptable and even necessary and good for large groups of the population.
Communism and nazism became placebo religions, including the Stalin and Fuhrer cults, relics, mass ceremonies c.q. parades and a zealous belief in their cause, just as religions can become ideologies. The Forum uses actual historical events to help people reflect on the age they live in. The past and the present are continuously present in everything we do, which teaches us to see patterns. The Forum wants to equip people with knowledge for the future and our goal is to strengthen the will to work for equal values for all to work for everyone’s equal value – to listen, understand and act.
Information is not sufficient however, we must also be creative. The Forum works with viewpoints, research and training. the Forum acquires knowledge that it manages, packages and passes on and carries out attitude research in order to give citizens better opportunities to understand the age we live in. Further information: www.levandehistoria.se.