For many, the American Dream has come to mean the opportunity to build economic prosperity. It is the chance to go to school, to build a business, to own a home, to raise a happy and prosperous family.
These are wonderful goals; though, for many today, the American Dream seems to be a disappearing dream. Many young people do not feel that the American Dream that their parents and grandparents reached for and attained is a possibility anymore, what with the economic malaise spreading around this country and the world.
The Dream of America, though, was always something beyond the bare economics of the American Dream.
The Dream of America was something born of perpetual hope. It was a vision born of possibilities of the human spirit.
The true American Dream was given beautiful articulation by the writers of the American Renaissance period, from the 1830s until the end of the Civil War - writers such as Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Walt Whitman, and others. Collectively, they created a vision of the possibilities of the human spirit and of American democracy.
Is their vision of the individual and of America still relevant? Some would argue not; that we live in a totally different world - a world in which their grand and simple visions are no longer relevant or possible.
Others would argue that their writings have always been the seeds of a Dream of America - and a new American Dream - that are still struggling to be fully expressed, and which will inevitably be so.
A new Facebook page - Buddhism, Life & Death, & The American Dream - explores these issues, and is asking people from around the world - especially young people - for their comments and input.
The new Facebook Page is found at:
James Hilgendorf, the administrator of the page, is a filmmaker and author of four books, the latest being "The Buddha & The Dream of America". His films and books can be found on the website of The Tribute Series at: http://www.tributeseries.com.
# # #
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 book of James Hilgendorf.
Website is: http://www.tributeseries.com