Mary McAuley on Arseny Roginsky: "He did not give you an answer, he helped you find one"

posted 22 Dec 2017, 04:44 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 22 Dec 2017, 04:53 ]
21 December 2017

By Mary McAuley

The tributes to Arseny unwittingly reveal his rare ability to communicate with people of all ages and backgrounds. He must have been a good school teacher. 

Someone told me that, when serving his sentence, a group of prisoners would have him sit on a log and tell them stories rather than his holding the end of the saw. (Maybe, I suspect, it was safer that way – but all surely benefited.)  

It was not just that what Arseny said was almost always interesting but that he made you feel that what you were saying or asking was important. He did not give you an answer, he helped you find one. 

Negotiator, diplomat (in the best sense of the word), counsellor, and a man of principles, it would be nice to think that he is sitting, somewhere in the sky, talking of the present and future to a circle of old friends.