Org-mode has a minor mode called "Org Indent Mode."
This mode is indented for larger documents where the multi-star heading format becomes messy
would appear as
~ * heading~
Activate it with ~M-x org-indent-mode~
Type out the header level as you normally would. Comes with the bonus of aligning text to the current indentation level. Also converts normal org documents to the new display mode.
oh oh course brackets are still bad
(defun org-html-toc (depth info)
"Build a table of contents.
DEPTH is an integer specifying the depth of the table. INFO is a
plist used as a communication channel. Return the table of
contents as a string, or nil if it is empty."
(mapcar (lambda (headline)
(cons (org-html--format-toc-headline headline info)
(org-export-get-relative-level headline info)))
(org-export-collect-headlines info depth)))
(outer-tag (if (and (org-html-html5-p info)
(plist-get info :html-html5-fancy))
(concat (format "<%s id=\"table-of-contents\">\n" outer-tag)
(org-html--translate "Table of Contents" info)
"<input id=\"toggle-table-of-contents\" type=\"checkbox\">"
"<label for=\"toggle-table-of-contents\">table of contents</label>"
(format "</%s>\n" outer-tag)))))