Sunday, January 01, 2006

Great Actors know How to Be

While I was on a bus a few hours ago, I eavesdropped a conversation between a man and a woman. The woman had an American accent. They were discussing different actors and their performances. She thought Johnny Depp was the greatest actor of all time because of the range of roles he has taken on. They also named Russell Crowe as another great actor. I agreed with them; I think Crowe was superb in the film, A Beautiful Mind.

The woman believed actors, like Johnny Depp, can fit into any role; while other actors either have the roles written around their personalities, or they play the role as themselves. John Wayne, she said, was always John Wayne in all his movies. This made me smile. She said Meryl Streep was a versatile actress.

I was dying to join in the conversation so I did so in thought. I thought, "What about Matt Damon, he's another brilliant actor?" Seconds later they discussed Damon. The woman couldn't remember the two films he was in when he played an assassin. In thought, I gave her the names, but she didn't "receive" them.

It was time for me to get off. The woman was getting off at my stop. As we got off I told her how much I had enjoyed their conversation about films. I reminded her that the two Matt Damon films were The Bourne Supremacy and the The Bourne Identity. She thanked me. I also told that I agreed with her that Johnny Depp is an outstanding actor.

"I've seen him being interviewed," she said. "He's like blah, blah, blah, not much there really. But then he gets into character and it's as if he's not there or something."
"Yeah, I think he steps out of the way and lets the character take over."
"Exactly," she said.
"Judy Dench is another brilliant actress," I said.
"Yes, there are some fine British actors around," she said. "You know another actress that's excellent? Cate Blanchett."

I agreed with her. We discussed Blanchett briefly. She said she was pleased I was into films. She was studying script writing at the Film Institute. I told her I had studied media and cultural studies in college. She said she had to catch her bus so we said goodbye.

I believe great actors let the characters express through them. This takes trust and surrender. When an actor surrenders, he is in a state of being, and his work is effortless. Other actors, on the other hand, play the game of becoming their characters, which can make the actors appear as if they are either playing themselves or trying too hard.

This reminds me of the old adage: "Let go and let God." We are so busy trying to become like God instead of letting God be. To let God be, one must totally surrender to God. How?

We all have our ideas of what God is such as God is Love, the All There Is, Spirit, etc. I believe God is beyond definitions so rule number one is one should never limit God. Saying that, I see God as Unlimited Good. By "unlimited" I mean that God can take on any form and any attribute that meets the individual’s needs at the time. To surrender is to simply acknowledge that God is all there is. Thus, for me, Unlimited Good/God is all there is.

Every day is a new page in the eternal script called life. The words in the script are always the same: "God is all there is." God plays the role of the director, actor, writer, producer, all roles on the film set. Every time the director says, "Action!" I remember my lines in the script. The words in the script come to life. I don't try to figure out how God works, I just trust that He does.

I was inspired to get off the bus at a particular part of London and take a long walk through town. There were a few homeless people along the route I took. Instead of thinking about what I should do, or wonder if I should offer change if I had some, I walked peacefully knowing that God, Infinite Good, is right there. It is not my responsibility to worry about how things are or should be, I trust in Unlimited Good working in His own way.

I have realised that for ages I have been trying to become like God instead of letting God be. All I need to do is just let Him work in His own way. And you know something, I am always shown when I am thinking in limiting ways or trying to take over. Some people might call this "correction." God does not make me feel guilty but he simply reminds me of what's in the script: "God is all there is." What other correction is there?

When I surrender to God, I receive ideas or I am put in situations where I receive ideas based on other people’s experiences. Sometimes I have memories of music, films etc that are all part of meeting my needs at that moment. I am also given information about things I need to know. For instance, I only have two of the three keys to the front door. It is never a problem as my mother is usually home before me. At some point yesterday afternoon, I distinctly heard my mother's voice in my head saying she had locked all three in case I was going to arrive early. I didn't pay much attention to the thought. I arrived home and she wasn't there, and it meant I had to go out to kill time and I wasn't a happy bunny. Whether I am at peace or I rant and rage, it doesn't change the truth that "Unlimited Good is all there is." I was a bit split; part of me was in peace. Ha! I had time to write down some ideas about what it means to live without limits.

In order to let God do what He does best, I have to be like Johnny Depp, who seems to lose all sense of self and lets the character express through him.

No more trying to become like God. Unlimited Good/God is all there is

The End.