Are you free?
Well – check that iPhone clock stocked in your pocket. That watch on your wrist. And see, all our lives are tediously governed by time. By parameters. Perimeters. We accept it. Timing though, that is whole other issue because from time-to-time – timing goes overlooked and usually leads to an untimely misfortune. Sometimes.
It’s due to control. Too much? Compulsive. Not enough – a few shades short of night. Even less and less and less … well then you get psychosis, a shot, and a lollipop.
Where am I going with all this? Our appointments. Our meetings. Our: times. For every single time met – there are those times missed and opportunities passed. What if you did send out that poem? What if you did sing that song? What if you said those words, “I relate,” to someone whom honestly needed to hear? And, what if the sole purpose our souls dream is merely to bind our unmet lives? Unmet times. Bridging barriers between us, all of us, from fear which sidestepped our passion. With that said, I SAID – with that said … you’ll have to pardon me – my medications will soon arrive.
I ask you. Are you in? Are you ready to let yourself drift a bit? Well. Then. Please. Relax. Here are your medications, and here is your lollipop. Now before we get to the interview with our CRIMINAL MINDS Star, be prepared and read this sentence –> While you read it – permit this sentence to break down more than I just did moments ago and haze those hazel eyed curiosities to take comfort within each pallid space of white screen – between – my – words. And. Set them … free . . .
– b-r-e-a-k – i-t – d-o-w-n –.
GOOD! See…!? Further:
Okay. Um. No. Come back. Maybe not that far. Only far enough that my written words slow down right to a dot of punctuation(.) There. Welcome to life. Feel that sense of being? We’re right outside the parameter of hierarchy. Right outside the perimeter of hierarchical perception and right outside the illusion of judgement, time, and timing. Open those lungs. Fill them to brim. Let belief overtake and now … within this moment … you are, alive! Congrats! Now let’s move on! We should not grind this gear to a standstill. Time is precious.
Here are my takeaway lessons I gained from interviewing The Killer Woodsman on CBS-TV’s CRIMINAL MINDS, and Daytime Emmy Award Winner face of http://www.TakeThisLollipop.com;
Bill Oberst Jr.
Q: What is an aspect of yourself, your career, you as an artist which you feel is not expressed?
A: I would say that the emptiness and shallowness of celebrity culture.
This is a subject I rarely discuss but think about often. It is on my mind because I recently did a filmed interview for FilmCourage.com, which will be released in the coming weeks, in which we touched on this topic.
I fear that what I loosely refer to as “red carpet culture” and the stacking of other human beings into piles of “important people” and “non-important people” (or, even worse, “winners” and “losers”) is destructive to the soul.
Q: Compiling souls into a hierarchical importance has sadly become embedded in society. From jobs, to trophy wives, to technology. What do you believe is a path toward reclaiming morals and values?
A: Making my living in a business which depends on the illusion of human hierarchy to thrive, I have zero moral right to comment on the topic, but since you asked – I believe that this illusion of human hierarchy is exactly that, an illusion. It is useful for entertainment purposes only. It isn’t real. There is no human hierarchy. There is no difference.
So why is this little entertaining lie (that some people are “big” and others are “small”) a problem? It wouldn’t be, if we just enjoyed the guilty pleasure of it as a part of our fallen human nature, and taught our children that it was just that and nothing more. But we don’t do that, or at least in my little world it is not a prevalent thing to do it. I meet kids (and adults) all the time who believe the lie that being “famous” equates to being “better.” Ridiculous! And, I think, dangerous, especially for kids.
The way back? Empathy, forgiveness and sacrifice. To feel others’ pains, to forgive others’ wrongs and to meet others’ needs is the answer. Self-realization leads to self-worship which leads to self-pity, which leads to self-entitlement which leads to death. Always to death, either physically or spiritually or morally; for us or for someone we love. It’s poison.
Whew, please forgive the length of that answer! By nature I am a petty, selfish, jealous man and so by nature I cannot come close to doing what I am preaching here. That’s the reason I follow Jesus of Nazareth. I don’t have it in me to do it alone. Whatever road one takes, the important thing is to arrive at empathy, forgiveness and sacrifice. Nothing else matters.
OK, end of sermon.
Q: Where did faith enter your life? Home? Hardships?
A: My mother made us go to church. I’m glad she did. I was not glad back then. She raised me to look above rather than within for the answers. I rolled my eyes. Years later, to my amazement, it took. So Mark Twain told the truth when he said, speaking of our estimates of parental wisdom, “When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much he had learned in 7 years.”
Q: I have endured much pain from losing many loved ones. They’d lost their way, numbed their belief, and gave up dreams; faith within that field—how important is it for upcoming artists to be spiritually strong beforehand?
A: I would say that an actor or artist or entertainer has to have a spiritual core and a spiritual base, because what we are called to do is essentially a spiritual vocation. Our calling is to lift people out of the ordinariness of ordinary life for moments at a time; to lift them up and set them back down again refreshed and relieved and inspired to live more fully. That’s impossible to do unless one has a strong well to draw from.
Q: The list of awards and body of work is astounding man! Seriously, congratulations! Now, which projects were difficult to leave behind? Characters you were saddened to let go of?
A: Thank you Nathan. Every award that an actor receives belongs to a hundred other people as well – it is such a team sport. As to characters I was saddened to let go of, there are but a handful. Most of my work involves characters who give me nightmares, so I am quite eager to let them go. My character in the CBS series “Criminal Minds” got into my soul and I was sorry to leave him (although he is still at-large, so he could come back to be properly captured.) Even though he was a killer, his life circumstances and monstrous physical appearance made me identify with him. I wished that I could have helped him earlier in life. The movie character I was most sad to leave was Abraham Lincoln. He was a boyhood hero of mine and while I was glad to play him in a zombie movie (“Abraham Lincoln Vs. Zombies”) the experience made me want to play him in a straight drama. Lincoln’s melancholy calls to me some nights.
Q: How do you set aside one character and embody another within time frames?
A: As my grandma used to say, referring to her multiple marriages, “Turn the page!” When a character wraps he goes into hibernation. He’ll never leave you, but he knows to crawl into his cave and shut up unless he’s called forth again. So you see, this is why actors are nuts: we have hundreds of little cave demons in our heads!
Q: Words of wisdom?
A: I have no wisdom, man! I’m an actor. But if I were forced to offer advice to anyone in my particular business I’d say: “Work hard, expect nothing, have fun and don’t be a bitch.” Nobody likes a bitch.
Have your medications soothed you?
The next time you look to that iPhone or watch, remember that feeling. NOT the feeling of sedation! Focus! Freedom is what I’m talking about; let those day-to-day sidesteps straighten and haze your hazel eyed … on second thought, never mind. Hey, knock it off I said. You’ll get us locked up in a padded room looking like that … (laughs) too late.
Just keep in mind, there is too little of life to let it blur on by. So turn this (.) into (!)
See you around my friend. Hopefully; outside this dream.
For more information about, Bill Oberst Jr., click the links below:
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