Part 1:
How Do We Want to Express Ourselves?

Part 2:
How Do We Want to Express Ourselves?

Part 3:
How Do We Want to Express Ourselves?


Aesthetic Realism seminar:
How Do We Want to Express Ourselves?
with a discussion about Horace Greeley, part 3
By Michael Palmer

True Expression Needs to Be Complete

While Horace Greeley’s expression took the form of justice to people widely in America, his purpose, unfortunately, was not the same as husband and father.  I think he saw his marriage too much as a resting place for consolation, and this made for great pain.  When he met his wife Mary, she was a school teacher.  In Horace Greeley, Voice of the People,  W.H. Hale writes:       
Like Greeley, [Mary] carried with her into that outside world a burning earnestness and moral rigor; education was her passion.
This, I’m sure, was a large reason Greeley cared for her.  But, from what I read of his marriage, it seems he limited the effect his wife could have on him.  It seems he did not want to know her very deeply nor be a kind critic of her.  And, as time went on, like many men, he saw her role as primarily taking care of the home and family while he was away.   

        In Aesthetic Realism and Expression, Mr. Siegel writes:

 Expression begins with our thoughts to ourselves.  That is where we decide on who we are….We have to express ourselves through thought—not “meditation” or “revery,” but thought.
As a person who preferred brooding about myself and saw others existing primarily to serve me, I’m so fortunate to be continuing my education in professional classes taught by Ellen Reiss, the Aesthetic Realism Chairman of Education.  I’m grateful to be learning from her to be more truly thoughtful about the woman I love, my wife, Lynette Abel.  In one class, Ms. Reiss asked me:
Do you think a person is a chance to know yourself, {and} know the world?...Something in you feels you shouldn’t think about people at all—they shouldn’t raise difficult questions.  Miss Abel raises difficult questions because she’s a person.  You should see her as a beginning point to being deeper about people as such.
I’m so happy to be in the midst of this beautiful study.  And I’m glad for the lively and deep conversations Lynette and I had about Horace Greeley as I was writing this paper, which made for greater feeling about him, the history he was part of, and about people as such.

For Justice in the Mind of Abraham Lincoln

In Aesthetic Realism and Expression, Eli Siegel said, “When expression is good it is useful to yourself and everybody else.”  Horace Greeley’s greatest expression and usefulness to people came at a time this nation was in its deepest crisis—in the fight against slavery.  The South, with its industry based on making money from the work of slaves, was determined, in its ferocity, to maintain it.   As Eli Siegel stated in The Right of Aesthetic Realism to Be Known #916, “The great cause of the Civil War—despite Southern fakery on the subject—was slavery.” Greeley used his editorial voice in The Tribune  to fight slavery at every turn.  In an editorial in 1854 he wrote:

The one thing the South is after is the extension of slavery. We are not one people. We are two peoples.  We are a people for freedom and a people for slavery.  Between the two the conflict is inevitable.  Freedom has been betrayed and sacrificed!  Who comes to the rescue?
Greeley found that man to be Abraham Lincoln who was to become President six years later. 

        When the Civil War came, Greeley felt that the Union’s purpose should be clear—that this was a war to end slavery.   In his famous editorial of August, 1862, titled “The Prayer of 20 Millions,” Greeley encouraged Lincoln to declare the freedom of the slaves and enlist them in the fight.  Several months later, on January 1, 1863, Lincoln issued the “Emancipation Proclamation,” declaring freedom for all slaves.  Greeley called it the bravest document ever written by a President.  In an editorial, he wrote:

It is the beginning of the end of the rebellion…it is the beginning of the new life of the nation.  God bless Abraham Lincoln!
Justice and Our True Expression are the Same

I think Horace Greeley would have loved Aesthetic Realism.  Through its principles, he would have felt understood to his depths and I think he would have wanted people everywhere to know of it.  I’m glad persons are meeting Aesthetic Realism truly now in the most honest journal ever published--the international periodical  The Right of Aesthetic Realism to  Be Known[TRO] edited by Ellen Reiss.  Because of her passionate desire to understand happenings in the world and her desire that justice come to every person, TRO is educating America.

        The knowledge of Aesthetic Realism can enable people everywhere to be  truly expressed, to come into their heritage.

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  Michael Palmer