Quotes for
the Journey:

Fame

   
   
Fame is a bright flower, but
weeds abound mostly around it.

Edward Counsel
Maxims

   

The desire for fame tempts even noble minds.     -St. Augustine, The City of God

   

What is Fortune, what is Fame?
Futile gold and phantom name--
Riches buried in a cave,

Glory written on a grave.

Henry Van Dyke
ďThe TalismanĒ

   
Fame and secrecy are the high and low ends of the same fascination.     -Don DeLillo, Underworld
   
The fame of heroes owes little to the extent of their conquests and all to the success of the tributes paid to them.      -Jean Genet, Prisoner of Love
    
Fame always brings loneliness.  Success is as ice cold and lonely as the North Pole.     -Vicki Baum, Grand Hotel
   
Fame is like a river, that beareth up things light and swollen, and drowns things weighty and solid.     -Francis Bacon, Essays
   
The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well; and doing well whatever you do, without a thought of fame.     -Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

    
Of present fame think little, and of future less. The praises that we receive after we are buried, like the posies that are strewn over our graves, may be gratifying to the living, but they are nothing to the dead; the dead are gone, either to a place where they hear them not, or where, if they do, they will despise them.      -Charles Caleb Colton
   
No matter how much fame you have, itís not something that belongs to you. If Iím famous, that doesnít belong to me--that belongs to you. If you canít remember who I am, Iím no longer famous.     -Michael J. Fox
   
The people itching for immortal fame do not see that everyone who remembers them will themselves soon die, and the next generation in its turn, until these memories, transmitted by people who foolishly admire and then die, will perish. But even if these people were immortal and your memory stayed alive forever, what does it matter to you?  What good is praise to the buried, or even the living, except for some practical use?  You reject Nature's gift today if you cling to what people may say of you tomorrow.     -Marcus Aurelius
   
You know, there's a moment when you're famous when it's unbearable to go out because you're too famous. And then there's a moment when you're famous just right.     -Steve Martin
   
For as yet I did not understand fame, that public destruction of one in the process of becoming, into whose building-ground the mob breaks, displacing his stones.     -Rainer Maria Rilke
   
Not long ago a friend brought an aspiring young singer back to my dressing room after a show.  She was close to signing her first record deal and asked if there were any words of wisdom I could share with her at the beginning of her career anything about fame I thought she should know.

I told her what my mother told me when I was a teenager singing in the Beulah Baptist Church choir.  After the service, everybody in church would make a big fuss over me.  Especially the sisters.  "Patsy" they would say, "you've got the voice of an angel.  Your solos are so pretty they could make a sinner see Jesus."

My mother never said anything in front of the sisters.  But once we got home, Chubby made sure I understood something far too many people don't:  Glory is never diminished by being shared.

"You're not singing by yourself child," Chubby would say.  "Next time you're standing there soaking up all that praise, I want to hear you give the choir some respect.  If I've told you once, I've told you a thousand times.  A whole bunch of candles can be lit from one without diminishing it.  Now I know it's nice to have people treat you like a queen.  But, unless you know how to wear it, a crown only has to fall a few inches to be a noose.  Don't you ever forget that."

I never have.

Patti LaBelle
   
All fame depends upon is the adulation of adoring crowds--if people see you as worthwhile or important or great, then you have fame.  In other words, fame is one of those things that depend upon the perspectives of other people in order to be a part of our lives, and that presents another dangerous side of fame.  When we become dependent upon our fame, we suddenly become dependent upon our ability to maintain the adulation of others, and the temptation becomes very strong to make decisions based upon how others will see our actions rather than what we know to be right or best.

How many actors do you think have taken roles that they haven't felt good about just to keep their names in the limelight?  How many singers have recorded awful albums because someone has convinced them that this is what the public wants?  How many writers have written what they think their public wants instead of what's in their hearts?

In other words, fame is something that can make us compromise our principles or integrity when we want to maintain it or gain it, and that's something that never can be good.  Those are two things that never should be compromised, yet that are compromised regularly in the pursuit of or the maintenance of fame.

Fame is much like money--it doesn't seem to be the fame itself that harms us, but the desire to have it that makes us act as we wouldn't act if we were acting from our hearts.  The desire to be famous can cause us to harm other people in our attempts to be famous, to be people that we know in our hearts are simply not the authentic people we were meant to be.  And that can never be something that leads us to living our lives fully.

tom walsh
  
   

    

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