Tuesday, July 28, 2009

think higher, feel deeper

Elie Wiesel, Nobel Peace Prize winner, author of Night, Holocaust survivor, and teacher, was the main speaker at the Chautauqua Institution yesterday. I was fortunate to attend the lecture as part of a writing workshop led by three fantastic faculty members of the English Department at SUNY Fredonia. His lecture topic was morality - what is moral? My deepest impressions were:
- how kind, gentle, humorous, and young he seemed through his words and speaking manner
- the elliptical storytelling style of his lecture
- the affirmation of education as hope for humanity despite many failures (his famous caveat... "and yet...")
- the title phrase of this post, "think higher, feel deeper" was his response to an audience question (from a teacher) about a key theme for students

In other personal news, despite our successful trip to Taiwan and the leisure nature of our summer vacation since we returned home, pain and suffering seem to swirl around us over the past week in the form of accidents, illness, and death suffered by close friends. Besides the constant urge to weep and say "I hate (hospitals, cell phones, etc.)", I have the prevailing feeling and thought that there is no difference, no separation between people who are having a good time and people who are not.


Sue said...

That is a thought that I need to ponder for a while.

I'm sorry for your sorrows, and I'm happy for your happinesses...

only a movie said...

Lovely words. I hope your world gets lighter soon.

Celtic Traveler said...

Hey, I remember my teacher suggesting that book!