Der Sonnenkinder

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    Jan 22, 2008 11:08 PM GMT
    Have you ever met or known someone who was just incredibly talented, charismatic, and for whom EVERTHING went perfectly...

    Nietzsche called them the Sonnenkinder (Children of light). Those fortunate few who are handed everything on a silver platter at an early age.

    They are brilliant stars that stand out from everyone else.

    Sometimes I think that much of the 'Gay Lifestyle' is spent in pursuit of that ideal.

    Then so many of them fly too close to the sun like Icarus of Greek Mythology.

    Today’s example is of course Heath Ledger, a golden boy who had everything and managed an impressive body of film work while still only in his 20's. But there have been dozens of others from James Dean to Marilyn Monroe and Jon Eric Hexum to Princess Dianna... sometimes accidents, sometimes drug OD's, sometimes tragedies... all troubled.

    Why do you think they capture the popular imagination so? Moreover, what turns them so self destructive?

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    Jan 23, 2008 3:02 AM GMT
    I think people are naturally facinated by successful young people. Its a reaffirmation that parenting and civilization is successful, because the young are a product of society. They also define the possibility of human talents independent of experience.

    There are other young stars that hold it together and manage not to get killed - Scott Bayo, Brooke Shields, Ron Howard, Matt Dillon, Shirley Temple, Rob Lowe, Molly Ringwald, et al.

    The premature death of young proteges cracks the image of success and brings to light the weak foundations that can lie hidden under the veneer of 'success'. Because we've seen it before, we look for it in each new Sonnenkinder, enjoying them while also entertaining lingering thoughts about the possible tragedies that lay in store for them.

    Their deaths also cause their work to take on a more significant meaning - it can now be used to judge the whole value of their life since it has come to an end. Proteges who don't die young don't have so much made of each work, because people are looking for the next thing to come - not so for Heath Ledger.

    So, they capture attention because of the tragedy and the finality of their story.

    Why they go this route - the world is filled with youth who succumb. Our papers are filled with it. Some OD, some drink and drive and die, some engage in gang violence and die, some would die if left to their behavior but end up in prison.

    Money, work, career, marriages, children are all things that can bring you as much greif as happiness. Can you weather the down times? For some,


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    Jan 23, 2008 6:32 AM GMT
    The light that burns twice as bright burns for half as long.