Do you ever watch a very young entertainer and wonder where all that amazing talent, poise, and grace came from? Am I the only one who believes that maybe, just maybe, they are a reincarnation of some other famous entertainer who has passed on, maybe from too many bad habits or excesses? Think John Belushi, Jim Morrison, Marilyn Monroe, Elvis Presley, Freddie Prinz, Sid Vicious, River Phoenix, Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, and Janis Joplin. I have watched every American Idol show this season, and remember first seeing “Scotty” McCreery audition. I could not believe THAT Josh Turner voice could come out of a 16 year old kid. As he grew and evolved over the season, I became more intrigued by his unflappable poise, and his seemingly inate ability to entertain. Hell, I even like that funny sideways microphone thing he does. How do YOU explain these child phenoms?
Let’s just suspend disbelief for a minute and consider this scenario. Elvis ‘dies‘ and is hovering over his lifeless, bloated body. “Holy shit, who’s that fat, slovenly S.O.B. hanging onto the toilet? That fool had a beautiful wife once, beautiful girlfriends since, and a poolful of money and talent. I was one seriously handsome, amazingly talented singer, with everything to live for. Yet look at what I let happen. Drug abuse, pill popping, gluttony, weaponry mayhem. Man, if I could just have another chance I wouldn’t piss it all away; I would take a better path. Please God, just let me try it one more time, one more do-over, pretty please Dear Lord?”
The heavens part and angels descend and accompany Elvis to another realm, a peaceful, loving, serene place, where he can rest, reflect, and regroup. Maybe this takes place in a few years time, or maybe 200, but finally, the Cosmos believes that dead Elvis has learned his necessary lessons from his past life and grants him the opportunity to be reborn. A celestial placement agency finds a suitable spot surrounded by souls he’s known and loved before, and, just for fun, some he has loathed in other lives. Don’t think that angels don’t have a sense of humor! Elvis, named Scotty in this new life, is born into a family that’s a right fit in every way, and, at an early age, begins to show certain talents. “Well, his mom and I knew by third grade that little Scotty here had something special.”
You damn right! Scotty may not remember exactly that he WAS Elvis, or any specific thing at all, but he will have a sensory or emotional memory that will pull him in all the right directions. “Don’t get that cheerleader pregnant, Son,” whispers an angel to him, “You’ve got a second chance this time around; don’t screw it up with your pecker.” Unsure exactly why, Scotty yields to the sensed but unheard urgings and stays on the right path. He studies with the right mentors until one day he has an inner nudge to audition for American Idol. “Sure, right, what are the chances? I’m just a silly teenager, right?” But something unseen pushes Scotty to the audition, and like they say, the rest is history.
I simply do not believe we are born to live one time; who could get it right with only one opportunity? What if earth is just one big university, and prior to being reborn, we choose our own curriculum, our major? We are such amazing, complicated, multi-faceted creatures, surely all those layers are just shards leftover from many former lives. It’s as if life is a giant pizza, with each slice holding different toppings. In order for our souls to be perfected, we need to sample a bit of each flavor, so one lifetime you may be a mom with six kids, the next you may remain unmarried and childless. You may be a giver in one life and a taker in your next. All those fires and tests we go through could just be our exams, our lesson plan we set for ourselves prior to coming here. Perhaps that’s why kids as young as Scotty have a nudge to try out for Idol, and make a grab at that brass ring. Not because they are any more special that the rest of us, but because the path of fame and celebrity is what they’ve chosen this time around in order to learn.
Wouldn’t this concept make us all a lot more tolerant of one another? Hate gays? Don’t bend over to pick up the soap in the shower because that might just be you next time around. Are you a bully who beats his wife? Perhaps you’ll be a Barbara in a future life, and will feel the sting of a backhand yourself. Are you a racist skinhead? Just imagine coming back as a strapping black man in rural Alabama!
Just let your mind run free for a moment. Maybe Lauren Alaina had been Jimi Hendrix, or even more fun, Sid Vicious! Was James Durbin Janis Joplin or Marilyn Monroe? I think this would make a really fun board game. Should we call it “Who Were You Then”?