The world benefits enormously from having talented individuals as entertainers. But what happens when people with talent just don´t quite make it, or having been at the top of the tree for a short while now find their popularity is waning? Or what about the most popular stars who have succeeded in achieving long-standing reputations but suffer from a serious sense of loss of self? Sometimes success, while bringing fame and fortune, does not tick all the boxes. How can talented individuals come to terms with ordinary life?
A faulty internal logic informs a talented individual that he has to make it or else all is lost. Otherwise what a waste of talent! The faulty logic goes that he would not have such talent in the first place if he was not meant to be a big star as a result of it. This can apply as much to artists and writers with a flair for entertainment as to performers of stage, screen and TV. It is a need firstly to capitalise on the talent they undoubtedly have, by boasting about it and cashing in on it, and secondly to gain recognition. Fame and fortune are a form of recognition and the perfect reward for talent.
But fame and fortune in themselves can bring misery as well as happiness. If you never had it, you crave it; if you had it once and lost it, you miss it; and if you have always had it you wonder what life would be like without it. So talent, as well as being a wonderful gift, can also be a poisoned chalice bringing misery. When coupled with competitiveness it can do some real damage to the prospects of individual happiness. There will always be someone else in the wings, younger, more talented and more popular.
The cure for the faulty logic which plagues a talented person who seeks the adulation of an audience and the prosperity it brings, is a “bringing down to earth”. All eyes are on the stars, but sooner or later all the stars shall fall. Those stars who are best prepared for the anti-climax that follows a dazzling career, will have a better chance of a sane, balanced life. This is brought about by the simple realisation that their gift came from God in the first place and belongs not to them but to Him. It is His will which determines when to switch the talent on and when to let it lie. The greatest star of all was Jesus Christ.
Life is not just about maximising the things you can do, but also understanding that there is a humility at the centre of the human condition which is universal and applies to everyone, regardless of status. Jesus was a divine child, yet he accepted the fate of the cross with equanimity. A star on the wane, or one seeking a new sense of self, has to accept their humanity with philosophical reserve and learn to love the ordinary things in life: friends, family, charity. They should learn to give adulation as much as they once yearned to receive it.