People say that The Killing Fields are the number one place of interest to visit if you are in Phnom Penh.
But why would I go to a place where murder was just a game? What if the word killing field alone, already makes me sick? Do I really want to go to such a place while there is so much more to discover in Cambodia?
These are some of the questions I asked myself before I left my comfortable joy-zone heading towards the memorial graves of The Choeung Ek Genocidal Center in Cambodia.
The voice of the audio tour tells me that almost 3 million people have been executed during the Khmer Rouge regime. I walk around the quiet Killing Fields while listening to the horrific details. The clear blue sky, the bright sun and the peaceful energy are in stark contrast with the skulls that are placed in the memorial stupe.
I’m standing in front of a tree and look from its roots to its top. It witnessed so many deaths, it has even been used as an object to kill people and yet this tree survived. The so called tree of life, has been used as dirt but still it’s providing oxygen to the earth, it’s still breathing to serve the human race.
If there is anything valuable I’ve learned from my visit to Choeung Ek, it’s to show my gratitude and respect to all that is. I am grateful for my world, my body, and above all; my breath.