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

After Millennia Of Not Knowing Who We Are

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

September 23, 2019

"If you don't change your direction, you'll end up where you're headed." ... Confucius

"The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them." ... Professor Albert Einstein

"If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there." ... George Harrison

Leading the est Training

in episode 10 season 33 of

Raúl Juliá: The World's a Stage

aired Friday September 13, 2019
time 1:23:32

© PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) - 2019
Werner Erhard with Friends
It's evident the cosmos has a sense of humor. Imagine you're back at the dawn of time. You're on a pristine, bountiful planet that can sustain and nurture life for billions and billions of people. All possibilities are available to you. All materials you'll ever need, are already here, waiting for you to discover them. All essentials you'll ever want for, are already here, waiting for you to uncover them. Everything is plentiful. "Go ahead" says the cosmos, "it's all yours now, give it your best shot. Go!".

But wait! There's a problem (or a joke, depending on if you get it or not): you don't yet know who you are. Yes you think  you know. But you don't. Not really. It doesn't come with the territory.

That's how it was for you and I when all this started. Now it's today, millennia later. And everything we inherited, indeed everything we built from what we inherited, is predicated on one disconcerting fact: that when all this started, and then as we continued building everything we built, we knew not who we are. And the cosmos didn't tell us. It's its wry joke, its wicked sense of humor, its penchant for experiment  if you will: it rolled the dice, sat back, watched, and wondered if we'd figure it out.

And for the most part, we didn't  figure it out - at least not until around ... about ... now  when one maverick called out the emperor for wearing no clothes, so to speak. And given that wasn't available until very, very recently, what we see around us now is evidence of what our world's become after what we created using everything we knew from what we inherited, excluded knowing who we are.

It's tempting to recite a well-established list of all the issues resulting from that telling oversight, then tout solutions. I'm actually not going to do that (and if you want to stay informed, there are many institutions and highly respected individuals who will provide those details). We, as a global family (appreciated that way, or not) do indeed face a plethora of issues, some of which if we don't act on them tout de suite, are slated to soon become insurmountable, bringing a raft of dire consequences.

History however, has a history of repeating itself. So even as we tackle that list, it may be prudent for us to first distinguish and take responsibility for how we got here in the first place. If we continue coming from the same place we've come from for millennia (ie not knowing who we are) then even with the best of new intentions, we may indeed solve some of the issues confronting us, yet it's just as likely we'll continue accumulating new ones in the same predictable way as we've always done.

Skews become endemic in any endeavor based on a foundation of not knowing who we are, secondarily by filtering things through an "us vs  them" (or an "us or  them") worldview rather than an "us and  them" worldview, and primarily by treating integrity as expedient. Our world is at risk of becoming the poster child for both.

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© Laurence Platt - 2019 Permission