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Monday, April 09, 2018

All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent. Etc.

Dann gleitet das Bild des Führers über in das des Verführers:

If he [the Führer] understands his function in any other way than as it is rooted in fact, if he does not continually tell his followers quite clearly of the limited nature of his task and of their own responsibility, if he allows himself to surrender to the wishes of his followers, who would always make him their idol—then the image of the Leader will pass over into theimage of the mis—leader [the Verführer], and he will be acting in a criminal way not only towards those he leads, but also towards himself.

The true Leader must always be able to disillusion. It is just this that is his responsibility and his real object. He must lead his following away from the authority of his person to the recognition of the real authority of orders and offices...He must radically refuse to become the appeal, the idol, i.e. the ultimate authority of those whom he leads...

He serves the order of the state, of the community, and his service can be of incomparable value. But only so long as he keeps strictly in his place...[H]e has to lead the individual into his own maturity...

That would be Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was hanged on this date in 1945.


April 9, 2018 in Conscience | Permalink


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