Photography is a messenger of light and darkness, of color and emotion; it has the power to stir the human soul. It captures our image, and our own world, and reflects them back to us whether we like it or not.
A picture is worth a thousand words, as it captures, carries over, and shows us, in all its cold objectivity, a moment in time—and every moment has a message. In truth, all of these reflections are also opportunities for us to reflect upon ourselves and our world. Human nature is revealed for us in pictures.
There is also power in pictures—the power to move us. We see ourselves reflected in them; and we see the joys and the horrors human beings are capable of. Perhaps we may be compelled to take a lesson from our mistakes, or be affirmed in our joys. In sorrow, we may find our compassion; and in hardship we may find aspiration. There is much to be gained in reflection—there is human nature to grasp, and hidden potential within us to be brought forth!
Here we have compiled a small album of powerful photographs. Please use discretion when viewing them, because some of these images are indeed hard to look at. There are joyful images and horrifying ones; there are sad images, and terrifying ones. We hope you will gain something heartfelt from it, and then take a moment to reflect upon what they tell you!
1. A missionary and starving child
2. The inside of the Auschwitz gas chamber
3. After a 23-hour successful heart transplant surgery, a doctor (left) and his assistant (far right) stirred in profound relief.
4. Sixty years of father and son from 1949 to 2009
5. Diego Frazão Torquato, 12, from Brazil mourns the death of his teacher, who helped him transcend poverty through music.
6. A Russian soldier in Chechnya playing a discarded piano in 1994
7. This young man just learned that his brother had been killed.
8. After a 7-month tour in Iraq, Terri Gurrola reunites with her little girl.
9. Homeless men in New Delhi, India, receive food from a mosque at the start of Eid al-Fitr.
10. Men honor the exemplary service of the dog Zanjeer in 2000. Zanjeer saved thousands of lives in Mumbai during the serial terrorist blasts of March 1993—detected over 3,329 kg of RDX explosives, 249 hand grenades, 600 detonators, and thousands of rounds of ammunition.
11. Simply called, “The Falling Man,” a man captured falling from the World Trade Center during the 9-11 attacks.
12. A young boy attempts to move his alcoholic father.
13. A couple in embrace during their final moments before the collapse of a factory.
14. Hhaing The Yu, 29 overcome by grief after cyclone Nargis of May, 2008 in Burma, which killed over 100,000, and left millions homeless.
15. This dog Leao sits loyally beside the grave of his master, who was killed during the 2011 landslides near Rio de Janiero.
16. A photograph titled, “Wait For Me Daddy,” by Claude P. Dettloff from New Westminster, Canada, 1940
17. An elderly Russian WWII veteran discovers the tank he used during the war, is now on display as a monument in a small Russian town.
18. The counterculture movement during the ’60s promoting love not war.
19. Her entire life in devastation, this woman weeps in the aftermath of the tsunami, which hit Natori, Japan, in 2011.
20. A monument to religious toleration, these are the graves of a Catholic woman and Protestant husband from Holland in 1888.
21. Greg Cook embraces his dog Coco after he found her amid the ruins of his home destroyed in the Alabama tornado of 2012.
22. A re-enactment of Russian soldiers who prepare to go into battle in Kursk, 1943.
23. During the 2011 floods in Cuttack City, India, this compassionate villager saved stray cats with a basket on his head.
24. An Afghani man offers tea to an American soldier.
Senior Airman Brian Kolfage from Arizona lost both his legs and his right arm while serving in Iraq in 2004. Despite his horrific loss that altered the course of his life forever, this US veteran has settled down in the …
These non-biological twins were adopted as embryos, but due their surrogate mother’s sudden health issues they were born at 23 weeks. Doctors said that these premature twins had little chance to survive. But now they are all set to mark their …
Born severely disabled, this young man from India overcame almost insurmountable challenges in order to achieve his life-long goal of getting a PhD. Akshansh was determined to succeed despite his disability. Although his body is 95% disabled, 32-year-old Akshansh Gupta …