Thursday, August 21, 2008

The Coolest of the Cool

In last month's Ebony magazine, the cover story was about the "25 Coolest Brothers of All Time." I read over the profiles and found myself agreeing with a few of their 25. At the top of the list was Barack Obama, the current democratic nominee for President of the United States. The quote was "exhibits calm under duress and control under simmering fire." Sounds like the inner peace that spiritual searchers are looking for.

They also mention Jimi Hendrix whose music is the soundtrack for the "Flower Power Anti-Vietnam War Generation." That generation extolled peace and love, which is largely forgotten by those who would rather paint those participants as drug addicted, promiscuous hippies with no direction. By saying one without the other largely misses the point, as those who are stuck in the egoic often do.

The blurb for Sammy Davis, Jr. says "from singing to dancing to acting to drinking to laughing to just being Sammy, Samuel George Davis, Jr. went all out and did it his way." If we are true to ourselves, shouldn't that be the ideal we seek. If we go beyond the egoic identification and get to our deeper selves, we should all be this way.

If you read the rest of the profiles, you see that they don't go into much depth to explain cool for the other gentlemen on the list. They say some are cool because they produce music people like, or they make movies people like. Reading that makes you wish that they had explored the depths of their character. I'm sure there's more under the surface of Prince, Marvin Gaye, Gordon Parks, Adam Clayton Powell and all the others on the list and I'm sure we could have learned more, but we'll have to do our own research.

But that's okay, isn't it? After all, we're still seekers, aren't we?

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