Opening Words from Sun. January 5 by Kyle Nienhaus

Good morning. So, my family has been coming here since we’ve been a family; since we just got married, we started coming just after that; since we had Lorelai, and Kate has been our leader the whole time, she’s one of the reasons we came and we stayed and we love this place and when we heard she was leaving at the end of May were crushed, of course. But we’re very happy that James is going to be our new Leader, of course. Along the same lines I’ve been, about since we started coming here, working on a book, a philosophy book, hopefully, about Humanism and as I’ve been working on it I found this little passage I thought reminded me of Kate and what it means to be a Humanist Leader. It’s from my guy, Friedrich Nietzsche, you all know that… … Thank you.”

The genius of the heart, as that great concealed one possesses it, the tempter goddess and born pied piper of consciences whose voice knows how to descend into the netherworld of every soul; who does not say a word or cast a glance in which there is no consideration and ulterior enticement; whose mastery includes the knowledge of how to seem—not what she is but what is to those who follow her one more constraint to press ever closer to her in order to follow her ever more inwardly and thoroughly—the genius of the heart who silences all that is loud and self-satisfied, teaching them to listen; who smooths rough souls and lets them taste a new desire— to lie still as a mirror, that the deep sky may mirror itself in them—the genius of the heart who teaches the doltish and rash hand to hesitate and reach out more delicately; who guesses the concealed and forgotten treasure, the drop of graciousness and sweet spirituality under dim and thick ice, and is a divining rod for every grain of gold that has long lain buried in the dungeon of much mud and sand; the genius of the heart from whose touch everyone walks away richer, not having received grace and surprised, not as blessed and oppressed by alien goods, but richer in themselves, newer to themselves than before, broken open, blown at and sounded out by a thawing wind, perhaps more unsure, tenderer, more fragile, more broken, but full of hopes that as yet have no name, full of new will and currents, full of new dissatisfaction and undertows…

NOTE: The ideas and opinions in this post do not necessarily express the thoughts or opinions of the Ethical Society of St. Louis or its leadership.