Before I begin, let me confess. I am as guilty (perhaps more so) as the next person about believing I was “somebody” in a past life. My first thought was a conviction I must have been Van Gogh. My alternatives of choice were one of the Bronte sisters or HankWilliams (not Bocephus) – the realHank“I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” Williams.
I knew a guy who believed he was probably Einstein. He seemed brilliant, and if anybody could have been The genius Albert, it could be him.
Throughout my life, I have noted that those people who even entertain the possibility of some sort of reincarnation, inevitably believe they were someone great, powerful, or at the very least, notorious. (Seriously, I bet you know of someone who believes he was Jessie James or Doc Holliday.)
So, this is nothing new. It does, however, seem to be escalating. Now there are quizzes all over the Internet to identify which President you were, which famous gunslinger, which First Lady… The list goes on.
Let’s face it. Even if reincarnation is real, it is mathematically impossible that we were all some great person. There are only so many great artists, scientists, war heroes, or even criminals. For the most part, from the genesis of humanity as we know it, most people are just, well, people . We almost literally live the movie Groundhog Day – get up, go to work, retrace our steps at the end of the day, eat something, go to bed, then start all over again. Life is somewhat like the directions on the shampoo bottle: Wake, work, eat. Repeat as necessary.”
Yet, it is doubtful any of those Internet quizzes, after you answer its series of questions, will ever render this answer: “You were the town drunk.” Or: “You were Joe Schmoe. You worked six days a week in a sweatshop, and in your spare time wrote short stories that no one read.”
Most of us have to fantasize that somewhere, in some lifetime, we were “somebody” other than a number in the government database.
Few are as fortunate as I, to have been both Vincent Van Gogh and Hank Williams. (Big wink!)
Now, for the proverbial “call to action:”
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