Nothing exposes the human ego more than being faced with other people having the things that we want. Because of the basic values that exist in human society, we can pin point a few of these things we want as being major sore spots for our ego to be confronted with, such as beauty, money or success and fame. These three can be considered a trifecta. But above all, we want to see ourselves and to be seen by others as good.
It would be good to understand our reactions to anything that we encounter, especially to these major sore spots. But today, we are going to explore our reactions to fame.
Because we incarnate into this physical time space reality as an individual consciousness, we see ourselves through the lens of I and other things in the world through the lens of them. We perceive ourselves to be separate. Because we experience ourselves as a singularity, we have an idea of self. This is all the ego is. It is a concept of being a separate self. All beings have an ego. How aware that ego is and how integrated it is, is really what our life experience is all about. Our ego is an amalgamation of all things we identify with. Anything we say I, me or mine to is something we identify with.
For example, if I say my favorite animal is a horse, I am now identified with horses. It is a part of my ego and therefore, anything someone says or does that involves horses, I now perceive as involving me.
Another example is that if I say, “I am white (as opposed to black), I am now identified with being white. If anyone says something bad about white people, I will now perceive it as being a personal attack. Some of the things we identify with and are therefore part of our ego, we want to have be a part of it and other aspects we don’t. If people are constantly telling us that we are too angry, we will woefully identify with that. It will be a part of our ego, but we will resist that aspect of ourselves.
Because we all have a self-concept, we all want that self-concept to be good. Having a good self concept makes us feel good. And we have learned that if our self is bad, we get pushed away by others, which is the single most threatening thing to the physical human. If our self is perceived as bad by others, we end up not getting what we want and experiencing pain. This means the ego’s #1 goal is to keep us seeing ourselves and keep others seeing us as good. This is where the human shadow reigns supreme. The unaware ego will keep us seeing ourselves as good and others seeing us as good, regardless of the cost and regardless of whether the story it is telling in order to preserve that perspective is actually true or not. For more in depth information about this, watch my video titled: Self Concept, The Enemy of Awakening (Accept The Badness in Yourself).
Part of this vision of the self as good is significance. In order to see ourselves as good, people have to see themselves as significant. To be significant is to be sufficiently great, important or worthy of notice. This is the core reason we desire fame. The people who grew up in scenarios where they felt as if the message they got from others was that they were not important enough to be seen, heard, felt and understood for who they are and thus valued, are the people who are the most attracted to fame. Most of the people walking the planet today, experienced varying degrees of this wounding. Many of these people were also shamed for wanting or needing attention from people. Their needs were dismissed as not important in the grand scheme of things. The person who desires to be famous believes that if they can just prove their significance, they can be safe in that they would be seen, heard, felt, valued and thus finally get their needs met. And for this person, it felt VERY UNFAIR that other people got that significance and they didn’t.
There is a hole that is created when a person is treated as insignificant or undervalued, which is only satiated by becoming or seeing oneself as important enough to be valued enough that people give you attention and meet your needs. That attention essentially says “you matter, I see you, I feel you, I hear you and I value you enough to pay attention to you and care about your needs.”
One step away from this is that people can see themselves as significant when someone else who is famous (and thus who as already established themselves as important enough to be worth attention) deems them worthy of their attention. This is fame by proxy. And it is the main reason people gravitate to wanting to be near and be recognized by famous people.
At all moments of the day, we get to tell a story about ourselves; a story about our ego. We get to tell a story that makes us see our self as good or a story that makes us see ourselves as bad, which is too painful for us to bear. And this is where we begin to slip deep into the shadow relative to fame.
People have to create meaning for themselves. For more information about this, watch my video titled: Meaning, The Self Destruct Button. We have to tell ourselves a story about why someone has something we want and why we don’t. And unless we are willing to feel like crap, telling ourselves a negative story of ourselves, this is a story that has to make us feel good about ourselves.
For example, if someone has wealth, which is something we want but don’t have, we may say it’s because their parents were wealthy and it was all handed to them. This makes us see ourselves as good because at least we have to work for it and they really didn’t do anything to earn it. Or we may tell the story that this actress got a role in a film and we didn’t because she had sex with a producer, now we can feel good about ourselves because we were moral and didn’t prostitute ourselves to get the role. Or we may know someone who is really successful, but we tell ourselves a story that it doesn’t matter how successful they are at work because they are so bad at relationships. The bottom line is, when we are confronted with someone else having something we want (including fame) for the sake of our self concept, we unconsciously come up with a story that makes us feel better about ourselves in the not having of it. And the most common way of doing this is to make their having of it invalid in some way or not matter because they are so bad in some other way.
Slander works because it feeds our self-concept. Slander works because it allows us to escape from the pain of feeling less important, less valued, less worthy of notice, less wealthy and less beautiful. The multi billion-dollar business of tabloids is maintained because of this. If we perceive someone to be on a pedestal because the world is reflecting to us that they are more important than we are and more worthy of notice, it feels good to see them fall. It feels good to us to make them fall. It feels good to tell a story that makes them seem to have less of what we want or to at least be less deserving of having what we want.
This is another reason why we buy what people say and what the press says about famous people so quickly. I want you to imagine the break up you had that ended the worst. The break up where the other person left thinking you were the bad one in the relationship. Imagine this person being the one to inform the press on the “tell all truth” about you. Would they tell an accurate story about you? No. But they would still say that they know the truth about you because they were with you personally. They would therefore be treated as a credible source of information. And slander works.
I remember being told years ago a story about someone serving an actress that I loved. He said this actress was one of the worst people he had ever served at a restaurant. I have no way of proving whether his story was credible or not. I also have no way of knowing the situation from her side. But immediately, it changed the way I saw her. I couldn’t look at her and feel about her the same way ever again. That is how effective slander is. And like it or not, regardless of the fact that it allows our ego to feel better, it can and does ruin lives.
Remember how I said that people gravitate towards fame by proxy? Unfortunately it works in reverse as well. If someone can’t have their ego satiated by being treated as significant by someone who is significant, they have another strategy. Become significant by being against someone who is significant. This is the strategy that school shooters are taking. If I can’t be significant by being loved by them, I’ll be significant by being the one that kills them. We are so desperate for significance, we are even willing to get it through someone else’s demise. This is why people run to the press about famous people, excited to throw them under the bus. They can have their fifteen minutes of fame by tearing someone else off of the pedestal and telling themselves a story about why they are good or virtuous for doing that. They become worthy of notice not only from the person who they felt less important than, but also by everyone else who thought the person they are tearing down was worth notice.
And here’s part of what makes famous people into isolated and distrusting individuals, if a famous person ever slips up around someone near them who is getting fame by proxy (significance through being treated as significant by someone who has significance). If they ever give them any indication (intentionally or unintentionally) that they are not significant to them, this person’s only unconscious recourse for the pain of that experience to their self concept, is to turn against the famous person who they were experiencing fame by proxy with. This is so often why it is the people who were the closest to famous people that turn on them. They were never around that famous person for good reasons. They were there to get fame by proxy and the second they felt they lost any of it, their only way of getting significance back, was to become an enemy to the famous person.
The ego also tells a story about who someone is when they are famous. And it is a story that is created for your own personal benefit in some way. It feeds your sense of self. If you a person is famous everyone recognizes them and so everyone subconsciously feels as if they know them. They don’t. What they have done is to create an image of this person as a character in their own head. It is a projection. More than that, it is an overlay. To understand more about this in depth, watch my video titled: Overlay, What Prevents You From Having a Real Relationship. And this is where the desire for fame gets people into serious amounts of trouble.
If we carry this wound of feeling not important enough to be seen, heard, felt and understood for who we are and thus not valued, we will chase fame. We will chase it out of resistance to our own insignificance. It is in fact our avoidance strategy. Chasing fame allows us to avoid the pain of that void. But whatever we resist, persists. Instead of fame being the antidote to this wound, it becomes a magnification of it. You will find yourself famous, surrounded by people who do not see, feel, hear or understand you at all because they are not in a relationship with you, they are in an overlay, interacting with the character they have in their head of you. You will also find yourself surrounded by people who do not care about you at all and in fact only care about being near you in order to get significance for themselves and fame by proxy. And thus, fame eventually makes you feel less significant and more alone than you ever were before.
This situation gets even worse if the only way to maintain your position of fame is to play a specific role for the people putting you in that position of fame like a commodity they want to sell. For example, Marilyn Monroe having to play dumb all the time to please her publicists and casting directors and the men who loved her for that character, which is not anything like she was behind the velvet curtain. Many famous people take their lives because of this tendency for fame to be a magnification of their original wounding. For this tendency of fame to be an even more isolating experience where they are seen and heard and felt even less by others than before as well as used by others as a means to achieve their own significance.
For us to become aware relative to fame, we need to own that we all want significance. It is not wrong to want that. Because it is not wrong to want significance, there is nothing wrong with wanting to be famous. But we have to be aware of the wounding of insignificance that we have that is driving us towards fame and towards fame by proxy. Instead of avoiding that wound, we need to go deeply into the wounding. For more information about how to do that, you can watch my video titled: How To Heal the Emotional Body and pick up a copy of my book, The Completion Process, which details a process to use in order to heal this wounding. You can also watch my video titled: Fragmentation, The World Wide Disease in which I present a process that you can use with the part of yourself that wants to be famous. This way, your quest for significance, can be a conscious one, instead of an unconscious one fueled by avoidance. This way you can care take the very real pain of the condition of feeling insignificant and watching other people get that significance you need so desperately.
We need to be aware of the stories that we are telling our self in order to preserve our self-concept, the stories about why someone is famous and we are not, the stories that satiate the incredible pain of that unfairness. We need to do this so that we can be aware, see the actual truth in any given situation and also not speak or take actions which can and will do damage to ourself or to other people in the quest to preserve our own self concept.
Take a look at the people who are famous, especially the ones you are envious of. What story are you telling yourself about why they are famous and you are not? What story are you telling about them or yourself in order to escape the pain of feeling less important, less worthy of attention and less sufficient than them in some way? Does this story serve you in terms of helping you to get what you want? If I took my attention off of that story and put it on any thoughts, words or actions that could assist me in actually getting what I want, what would those thoughts, words and actions be?