Usually the American Dream conjures up images of economic success, a big house, money, prosperity, and the opportunity to achieve all of these things.
A new page on Facebook is inviting people - especially youth - to challenge these concepts, and to share comments and posts about what they feel is the real meaning of the American Dream.
What does America really mean to you? What is your vision of America?
Although the American Dream is normally cast in economic terms, the Dream of America has certainly meant other things.
Three great writers of the nineteenth century American Renaissance - Thoreau, Emerson, and Whitman - saw the American Dream in quite a different perspective. For them, it meant a continuously unfolding drama of the human spirit and potential.
The real America, for them, had not yet been born.
In his latest book, "The Buddha and the Dream of America", the creator of the Facebook page, James Hilgendorf, writes:
"The dream of America is more than the huddled masses coming to our shores. It is more than a flag waving in the wind. It is more than the opportunities to get a job or make money or start a business or freedom of religion or liberty bells. It is something deeper than heretofore imagined.
"It is a single soul emerging from the crucible of the deepest fires of the heart of the universe itself. The dream of America is the dream of the universe itself, coming to fruition. It is the fulfilled self, at one with its universe, indivisible, drawing on its deepest potential.
"You are the center. Realize it."
What do you think? What is your vision?
You can visit and comment on this new Facebook page, titled "Buddhism, Life & Death, and the Dream of America", at:
James Hilgendorf is the author of four books, "The Buddha and the Dream of America"; "Life & Death: A Buddhist Perspective";
Hilgendorf is also the creator and producer of America's Dialogue, an international discussion forum. The website is http://www.americasdialogue.org.
# # #
The Tribute Series is the producer of a series of highly-acclaimed travel videos. The company also produces corporate videos for domestic and international sales. The company also publishes the books of James Hilgendorf.
The website for The Tribute Series is http://www.tributeseries.com.