Do you know any great men? Do you know of any great men? Can you name any? If so, they’re not great men. Why? Because truly great men, and the word men here refers to all variations of Humankind to include male, female and undecided, are not identified by name. The marketers of the past, the historians, portray a fabricated forgone version of reality they call history replete with a cast of characters they call great men. And fans of history gobble this shit up like its caviar, when in fact it’s excrement stirred with a five spice blend.
You may think you know, and know of, great men, but you don’t. Truly great men remain forever unidentified and unacknowledged, if there are any at all. If there are great men, their stealth is their hallmark, and what’s most endearing about these ghost-like great men is that they never have an inkling they’re great and that’s part of what makes them so great, if there are/were any great men. To be great is to never know it. You don’t aspire to greatness. You don’t seek it. You don’t conjure it. It’s never a consideration, for to acknowledge greatness in oneself is to preclude it from your presence. Just like an electron appears to change its behavior under observation (or does it?), so too does greatness. It flees when it’s sought and if it can’t escape in time it changes its character from inspiration to yetzer hara. You can’t contain it, bridle it or bottle and sell it, you can only engender it. Build it and it will come, but don’t expect it and don’t acknowledge and glorify it. Let it do its work silently and humbly through us when we’re not looking. Only then does greatness achieve its full potency and potential.
By virtue of everything I’ve just asserted, one may conclude that my statements preclude the possibility of there being any great men at all, and your conclusion would be correct. Men are not great, but men can engender greatness and allow greatness to use them via acts of greatness. Collectively, these accumulated acts of greatness manifest in great evolutionary societal changes, and historians in their simplicity, have ascribed these evolutionary adaptations to what they’ve labeled great men, and that’s balderdash. Those alleged great men of history do not get to take the credit for the whole and entirety of greatness working its way through all Humankind.
So the next time you see or hear someone waxing on about great men like Jesus, Muhammed, Caesar (any of them will do), Genghis Khan, George Lincoln, Abraham Jefferson, Thomas Washington, Mother Ross, Nathan Bedrest Foford, Albert Edison, Thomas Einstein, Adolph Stalin, Neville Lenin, Mao Say Dong, Toxoplasma Ghandi, Gold As My Ear, Martin Luther Sharpton, Betsy Teresa, Obama bin Laden, Numbers U.S.A. Tanton, Volodya Putin or you name it, say “sorry, no thanks, that’s bullshit, please shovel it elsewhere because I’m not buying any of it today or any other day.” In so doing, you will help enable greatness to just be, much as the great John Lennon importuned us with the following great song from the great band, The Beatles.