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The Death of Celebrity

Image: Facing East - A New Dawn, by Oliver Johnston

Image: Facing East - A New Dawn, by Oliver Johnston

Reverence is a dangerous emotion. When we are overtaken by it, we become susceptible to all manner of suggestion. Numerous industries depend on the state it puts us in, and they work consciously to uncover the unconscious trigger points we hold inside, pressing them as vigorously and as often as possible. It is a technique that serves as a key factor in the functioning of everything from religion to Hollywood, and if there is one thing we can say about it with absolute assurance, it's that it works. 

One of the main reasons for this  a key trigger point  lies with our insecurities. Insecurity is a serious shadow emotion from which all manner of unconscious behaviour results. It is also a massive doorway for those who are able to identify it, and who wish to manipulate our emotions and behaviour. It is through this very avenue that we are held victim to a type of prolonged engineering, one in which even our insecurities themselves are subject to an on-going re-fashioning. This is the clay from which the paragons of so-called purity are erected, implanting us with the all-pervasive ideology of subconscious subservience  that ever present message, instilled and re-instilled: you are not good enough

Nowhere is this more apparent in today's society than in the spectacle of celebrity. Why else would the mass of the modern world strive to emulate their behaviours, following their clothing cues and hanging on every detail of their private lives? No matter the industry  cinema, television, music  the reverence is there. We've been triggered to long for their lifestyles, to create beliefs about them in our minds; they are on constant display on the endless screens we stare into, telling us we need to strive for the things they've attained  fame, beauty, riches. Sometimes even talent. All of this only serves to continuously reinforce the paradigm that has been created, keeping us hypnotized, keeping us buying. 

The longer it goes unchecked, the more distorted it becomes. The reverence is becoming increasingly tinged with undertones of desperation and viciousness. The Gods of the modern world are under fire. We hate loving them. Shows like TMZ dissect their every move  often laughing and criticizing  while bloggers like Radar and d-listed scramble to out-insult them. The magazines in the check-out lines carry images of their pain and suffering more so than any other, and every mistake one of them makes  an integral part of the human experience  is amplified beyond any reason. Celebrity, in turn  though still wholly pined after as some kind of unattainable ideal  has become a crushing burden for many who experience it. This is the world we live in. These are the icons we've created in our own image, and how we've responded in turn. The whole thing, it seems, has degraded into a terrible transfer of pain. 

Yet I see a different possibility. I see a future in which we understand ourselves deeply enough that we cannot be triggered by outside forces, in which we feel clearly our power as unique individuals and can therefore experience no sense of lack. The type of reverence we heap onto the stars of today's world could not exist on such an earth because, at its core, there would be an infallible sense of our own unique divinity, and all of those things that so easily take root in the absence of that sense could no longer live. 

This is what we must remember, what we must strive each day to remind ourselves of  and I mean both of those terms literally  we must re-work our own minds in order to re-member our own images. We already possess what the spectre of celebrity tells us we don't  far more, actually  and it is this that we need to once again get in touch with. Each of us is sovereign. We are born that way and we will die that way. It is the greatest gift. No external circumstance can take it away from us  no situation, no person, nothing. It is time now for us to honour that gift by finally making use of it. We must get in touch with our thoughts, we must pay attention when we sense ourselves being triggered, we must stop giving our power away by seeking it outside of ourselves. 

If we can do this  reclaim our sovereignty  the healing we will begin to experience as individuals will slowly start reversing the polarity of 'lacking within and seeking outside'. Each of us will seek our own truths within, and as we find them, those truths will in turn begin radiating outwards, filling our terribly lacking world with each of our unique and beautiful imprints. We will find then that the tired and painful experience of reverence as we have known it was indeed a terrible adultery. 

It is hard even to imagine what we will begin to produce once this happens. There will be an explosion of beauty and creative genius the likes of which this planet has never known, and it will come through the clear understanding of ourselves as being both completely equal yet radically unique. As with all great truths this is seemingly paradoxical, yet it is the very acceptance of this paradox, lived, that will fully open us up to the experience of ourselves as the universal conduits we truly are. No longer will it be possible to worship any individual, for the very nature of what it means to be an individual will be totally and forever altered. We will stand instead in reverence before the power of expression itself, and the incredible uniformity and uniqueness inherent therein. It will be shared and shared alike. And it is in this world that we will know the death of celebrity, and celebrate gloriously.