8. May, 2014

CELEBRITY STATUS ?

'They who mind earthly things, are the earth.' (St.Augustine of Hippo 354-430 A.D.). Augustine here is attacking the imbalance of society, when it raises up a politician or a media celebrity to star status. We then ignore the real person, covering him or her in a coat of many colours, so that they not only become stifled to express their actual selves, but will often be sucked into an inflated belief of their personality. But of course this is not only about worshipping material values above the spiritual whether in ourselves or in others. The implications are far wider. The very act of looking up, metaphorically, let alone physically, raises our spirits to question, to act, to reflect. By stepping back from overly adoring celebrities, political or public, we can consider how best to serve the community. As Thomas Aquinas said, 'Justice is brighter than the Northern Star'. For him, Justice is about equality, serving the parts of the whole community, and therefore the good of the whole. Focusing our attention,even for a short time, on someone who is manifestly being pushed into the spotlight, diverts our energies. At the moment we have much lack of justice in the world. Bad working conditions; Corporate greed; Political grabbing of power; Individuals adrift without solid values. All we can do, is to nibble at the edges, to redress some of these illnesses. As St. Augustine reminds us, ' In each human being all of Creation is present'. A "sticky note" to re-balance ourselves. Thank you. 

Tom Baxter