Famous Fingerprints


?John F. Kennedy

Life Purpose: Inspire the Masses
School: Service
Formula: Who am I to Inspire the Masses? Who am I not to?

Have you seen the TV commercial in which an upscale couple is shown touring the Great Wall of China? Smiling at each other in smug satisfaction, they cross another item off their Top-Ten-Things-To-Do-In-This-Lifetime Checklist. That's how I must have looked in the summer of 2000 when, like kids trading baseball cards, I got JFK's fingerprints from Andre Washington and he got Albert Einstein's from me. The Freedom of Information Act requires dead presidents' fingerprints be public record but for the life of me I could not work my way through the paperwork maze. Andres' superior bureaucratic skills paid off handsomely and poof, there before my very eyes, JFK's prints appeared on my computer screen.

John was not the original choice of his dad to occupy the White House. Joe Jr., his older brother killed in action during World War II, was the chosen one until fate stepped in. Was President Kennedy actually living his life dream or was he flogging himself daily trying to live up to some impossible standard? And what about all that Marilyn Monroe stuff? The most powerful person on the planet just had sex with the epitome of sexuality, the proverbial Eve of the twentieth century. Did he ever feel complete and whole? Or does he get up and look for something to do, something to eat, something else; anything, as opposed to being at home with himself? Since JFK did significant Masses Inspiring we can assume he must have made progress on his Life Lesson during his attenuated stay on the planet, but how haunted was he by Mr. Not Enough? We'll never know.

There is a scene in Thirteen Days, a movie about the Cuban Missile Crisis starring Kevin Costner that comes to mind. Kevin is in a limo with Robert Kennedy, the president's brother and key advisor. Robert is to meet with Gromyko, his Soviet counterpart and negotiate a settlement that will save the world from nuclear annihilation. Or he will fail and the world as we know it will end. RFK tells Costner he feels inadequate to the task. Costner replies, "There is no one else I would rather trust with the lives of my wife and children." Buoyed up, RFK rises to the challenge. Confidant but not too confidant, he makes real human contact with Gromyko and the crisis is resolved. RFK's bout with insecurity saved the world.

The fate of all humanity may not hang in the balance in your life, Marilyn Monroe may not be coming over shortly for a nightcap, but the Kennedy brothers' story allows a good illustration of just how one's Nemesis (Life Lesson) can become one's greatest Ally.

Life Purpose: Inspire the Masses, Successful Public Impact in the Healing Arts
Life Lesson: Mr. Not Enough
School: Service / Inner Peace
Formula: Who am I to Inspire the Masses? What right do I have not to?

JFK's fingerprints provide our entry into the mysterious world of Mr. Not Enough, the voice of insufficiency. Always looking for that illusive something that will signal the final victory, feeling somehow short of what life requires - that is Mr. Not Enough. Not having enough money to do what you want, not having enough time to get the job done, not having enough smarts, good looks, lucky breaks - that is the Mr. Not Enough voice in action.