Note: This article is part of the Mormon Tabernacle Enquirer’s ongoing “Out of the Best Books” series, where we look at the impact of literature and the arts on Mormon life, practice, and spirituality.
|How President Hirsh pictures|
himself when addressing elders
Hirsch (25), who encountered the text in his undergraduate World Literature course, stated that “the idea that it is better to be feared than loved has completely changed how I lead my quorum, especially how I conduct weekly priesthood interviews.” President Hirsch continued that “we had good results before, but ever since I have started giving the monthly stewardship reports during my testimony on the first Sunday and have convinced [the elders in the quorum] that I can cancel their temple marriages, the numbers have just skyrocketed.”
These are not the only changes that reading the Renaissance political thinker has brought about for Hirsch. “I used to be pretty casual about things, too casual I guess,” explained Hirsch. Hirsch elaborated that “I used to occasionally wear a colored shirt to church, sometimes just khaki pants and a tie. But what Machiavelli said about the importance of how people perceive you has totally changed that. Now, everywhere I go I look and sound like an apostle in the priesthood session who could totally call you out on porn at any moment.”