Friday, April 30, 2010

The third thing about fame

Among the many assertions that have been made about fame are the following. Fame brings wealth, renown and a great social standing. Aspiring to be famous is for the selfish and power-hungry. Fame breeds arrogance, laziness and corruption. Etc. But are there only those two sides to fame?

Perhaps a nuanced assertion that has been made less often is the following. Aspiring to fame is a deep willingness and open invitation to be judged by the world. It is a complete submission, and a handing over of the right to be criticized, praised and talked about, to everybody in the world, regardless of their qualification or emotional stake in passing judgment. Aspiring to a public life is thus an aspiration to live in complete and utter openness. I'll argue here that there is a right way, a noble way, to aspire to be renowned, that fame is not always base. Let's call this fame 3.0 for simplicity.

Fame 3.0 is very close conceptually to ideas from several places. For instance, it is very close to the the Bhagavad Gita's "actions > rewards" prescription, or the stress of process over results from the enterpreneurial school of thought.

And it's probably fame 3.0 being confused for fame 1.0 or 2.0 that got Jesus crucified or Martin Luther King assassinated.

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