What do Kim Kardashian, Tom Cruise, and Mother Teresa have in common?
They are all famous.
But famous for what? What classifies someone as famous?
According to the Oxford Dictionary, ‘famous’ is defined as: “known about by many people” while ‘fame’ is defined as: “the condition of being known or talked about by many people, esp. on account of notable achievements”.
Let’s start with Kim Kardashian. What in the h-e-double-toothpicks is so special about her? Where did she come from and how in the heck did she get to be so known about by many people? What has she contributed to society? What are her notable achievements?
Tom Cruise – this one is a bit easier. Jockey-shorts-dancing ’80’s teen heart-throb turned action-star turned couch-jumper turned questionable. He certainly mastered the talked about by many people portion of fame and now with his current situation the conversation continues.
Mother Teresa would appear to epitomize the Oxford definitions of both ‘famous’ and ‘fame’. Her name known by all, both pre and posthumously, she embodied goodness and faith in humanity. Her notable achievements are innumerable. Her effect on society continues beyond her life. A legacy of hope, love, compassion and fortitude.
So, the next time someone asks: Do you want to be famous? Before answering, define what fame means to you.
For me, if famous means that I have attained my fame based on achievements that leave a legacy for the benefit of mankind; that I have contributed to society in a positive and lasting way; and that I am known about by many people because of those acts, then the answer is a resounding ‘Yes!’.
Do you want to be famous? What does fame mean for you?