Conversations For Transformation: Essays Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

Conversations For Transformation

Essays By Laurence Platt

Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

And More

A Crucible Of Ideas

Trefethen Family Vineyards, Oak Knoll Appellation, Napa Valley, California, USA

July 19, 2016

"If you can't stand the heat, stay out of the kitchen."  ... President Harry S Truman quoted by  
This essay, A Crucible Of Ideas, was conceived at the same time as Include Everything.

I am indebted to Sumit Makkar who inspired this conversation.

The entry point for this Conversations For Transformation internet series of essays, just like the entry point for the greater body of Werner's work, is listening its ideas (ie listening its rich body of distinctions, if you will) then being in a conversation for them. More than merely comprising component words, living ideas have real power: the power to transform, the power to alter (and clarify) perception, the power to bring forth new possibilities (that is to say, to cause things to happen which simply wouldn't have happened otherwise). In these essays, the differentiation is often drawn between speaking transformation, and speaking about  transformation. I say prior to speaking transformation, are the ideas which are the catalysts for speaking transformation. In this way, you could say Werner's work is a crucible of ideas.

From the Cambridge International Dictionary:



a container in which metals or other substances can be heated to very high temperatures
Cole-Parmer high-form crucible with lid

- porcelain, 15 mL
- glazed inside and out except for outside bottom
- withstands temperatures up to 2,102°F (1,150°C)

Photograph courtesy

Once these ideas (metals) have been tested (heated to very high temperatures) and are proven to give rise to speaking transformation, they're made openly available. There's no preparation required to get them - like there's no preparation required to get the wetness of water (just put your body in it: you'll get it). The best way to get these Conversations For Transformation is by reading (listening) them. That may sound simplistic. But it's actually profound. There's nothing else to do, and no better way to get them, than by reading (listening) them, and taking what you get. That's it. That's all. There's nothing you need to understand (or try to understand). The ideas of transformation impact subliminally. All there is to do to get them is to be open to getting them (that's actually a lot closer to the truth than it sounds).

In the same way as sight isn't the best sense for listening music, and hearing isn't the best sense for enjoying the perfume of jasmine, and smell isn't the best sense for feeling fine linen, and touch isn't the best sense for savoring the gustatory delights of a gourmet meal, and taste isn't the best sense for watching a sunset, so understanding isn't the best sense for getting transformation. Really. We're thrown  to try to understand transformation. Yet that sense isn't a fit for this experience.

You'll know, as soon as you bracket sight out of the way and try on hearing instead, that music works better. You'll know, as soon as you bracket hearing out of the way and try on smell instead, that the perfume of jasmine is heavenly. You'll know, as soon as you bracket smell out of the way and try on touch instead, that fine linen feels finer. You'll know, as soon as you bracket touch out of the way and try on taste instead, that the delights of a gourmet meal are easily discernible on your palate. You'll know, as soon as you bracket taste out of the way and try on sight instead, that watching a sunset is sublime. None of the above require understanding.

Like that, you'll know as soon as you bracket understanding Werner's work out of way and simply listen its component ideas, that they, like wet water, are best gotten through direct experience. In experiencing Werner's work and ideas directly, you'll discover your power to experience life  directly, without the requirement of having to filter it though a screen of understanding. Understanding simply isn't required to get the experiences which are created in this crucible of ideas, rigorously tested in the laboratory (if you will) of his critical colleagues first, then presented to the world as the work of transformation. It's more than that actually. It's it only gets in its way.

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