Jun 5, 2014

Jim Carrey's Heartfelt Commencement Speech: 'Do What You Love'

27 May 2014
By Clyde Hughes

Comedian Jim Carrey talked about his father over the weekend in a heartfelt commencement speech at Iowa's Maharishi University of Management in an effort to encourage graduates to follow their dreams even if they fear failure.

Carrey, who also spoke at the Fairfield, Iowa, institution last year, received an honorary doctorate of fine arts degree from the university as well, E! Online reported.

"My father could have been a great comedian, but he didn't believe that that was possible for him, and so he made a conservative choice," the 52-year-old funnyman said of his father, Percy Carrey, according to the New York Post's PageSix.com. "Instead, he got a safe job as an accountant. When I was 12 years old, he was let go from that safe job, and our family had to do whatever we could to survive."

"I learned many great lessons from my father, not the least of which was that you could fail at what you don't love, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you love," Carrey continued.

Known for comedies like "The Mask" and "Ace Ventura: Pet Detective," Carrey told the graduating students that he believed he could "free people from concern" with his comedy.

"I've often said that I wish people could realize all their dreams and wealth and fame, so that they could see that it's not where they're going to find their sense of completion. Your job is not to figure out how it's going to happen for you; it's opening a door in your head, and when the door opens in real life, just walk through it."

The Des Moines Register reported that, while Maharishi University of Management offers degrees in conventional college subjects, it is more known for its work in meditation. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi popularized transcendental meditation and his followers in Iowa created the university in 1973, stated The Register.

The star of the upcoming "Dumb and Dumber" sequel, which is currently in post-production, was the guest speaker at the school's David Lynch Master's in Film program last fall, according to the newspaper.