Ah, fame. At one point in our lives, we may have thought about the possibilities of becoming famous. We have a little universe inside our minds where we build our alternate realities – fashioning visions of our hopes and dreams and living our best lives.
We live inside our minds where we imagine: what could be… if we stepped into the light of our greatest potential? And become the person we dream of becoming? The contentment and happiness fame offers is so tempting, that we find almost everybody aspires to become famous within a snap of our fingers. Maybe because there’s something fascinating about our lives being noticed, accomplishments being celebrated and the attractive benefits one may experience. People are drawn to the fleeting feeling of doing something they are great at and being recognized for it.
The glory that famous people receive, roots from the need to be validated by society and those who don’t put a limit to their imagination, tend to have their thoughts of being famous resonated in real life.
But how does fame become an illusion?
Fame is a mystical thing that gives you the notion of having an amazing life. Only a few are fortunate to experience it. Glorious life, recognition, privileges and superiority – almost everything is given to you. That’s the illusion fame wants you to have. Many are willing to sacrifice and surrender what they don’t even have for something in exchange that they thought might fulfill their lack.
This great illusion is a realization after having gone through that door of prominence. These celebrities know for a fact that once they are in, there’s no turning back and that is why a lot of successful and famous people have emptiness and hollowness in their eyes.
Fans, on the other hand, only know their idols over the glossy pages of a magazine or through their television interviews and think that they are all made up of sugar, spice and everything nice. The line “She’s still pretty when she cries” is becoming a cliché now and the idea of knowing them through these platforms establishes an illusion of personal connection and attachment to them, leaving the underlying truth of who their idols really are behind the shiny cameras. They look at you with admiration and think you have it all.
Contrary to popular belief that fame makes our world bigger, it actually makes our lives smaller in a deeper context. The limit it gives, as you are being put under public scrutiny is exaggerated, leaving no room for privacy and freedom to do what we want to do.
Fame makes a man take things over, as heard from David Bowie’s song entitled “Fame”. You lose sight of what matters the most – love, freedom, compassion and peace.
Fame and greatness
Despite idols expressing their distress over fame, a lot of people still continue to believe in its illusion. One example is the ideology that fame and greatness are the same. Truth be told, it really isn’t. While fame is characterized as being well known by the public, greatness, on the other hand, is knowing your life’s purpose and contributing something valuable for the betterment of others. It is where authenticity blooms, something that fame lacks.
We simply have to redefine what it means to be great because being famous doesn’t mean that you are already great. “The essence of greatness is the ability to choose personal fulfillment in circumstances while others choose madness”, as internationally renowned self-development author and speaker Wayne Dyer once said.
The pursuit for greatness
What does it take to be great? For sure, a lot of people have pondered on that thought already. We must come to terms that great people are made and not born. Their passion is what ignites their engine to achieve greatness in their field, and you don’t even have to be famous to obtain such a feat.
Passionate people change the world. They believe in something so deeply and continue to believe anyway when others think otherwise. They contribute something for the greater good, not just something that would benefit themselves only. It is also important to acknowledge that in your pursuit of greatness, you need to be wary of the people around you. You need to cut out the toxicity of the people you surround yourself with, because you need people who will lift you up, not drown you. Significantly, you need to have a vision. You cannot be on the path to greatness when you can’t even see a clear picture of where you are heading to.
The desire for greatness and excellence is something that we must hold onto because the drive will catapult our hidden capabilities to become the best version of ourselves. Sure, validation and recognition won’t hurt, it will even give you more motivation. Nevertheless, try to stay away from the illusion of fame before it becomes a whirlpool of madness and until you don’t recognize yourself anymore; for fame is like a cunning thief with a mask in the night, ready to rob you of your true greatness.