The heart of man

by Benjamin Ong

1. When one communicates with an organisation — a firm, or a government body, for instance — one writes a letter, and, a few days later, one receives a letter.  The deliberations of the organisation — though they be between different staff members, they are deliberations only of the body — remain hidden.  And so it must be with the heart of man — one may go through elation, pain, panic, calm, but none of these  must be revealed: for it is better to send forth an occasional spark of brilliance than to put on display the internal processes that risk being seen as lame by virtue of their sheer intricate honesty — consider the delight with which one may devour a leaked classified document in spite of its brutal necessity, notwithstanding that no action can be taken in response thereto.

2. Yet let not communication be a series of performances, though it be an act choreographed, rehearsed, and performed: only exercise temperance, for once the heart is made clear, command and control are in danger of being relinquished.

3. Nonetheless, extremely rare is the friend or lover who will appreciate the gravity, the unglamorousness, of information, processes, and practices intended for internal circulation only: and extremely powerful, too, is such a person, for he/she has the terrible power to destroy utterly and to build up again.