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




Be A Good Day

Vista Collina, Napa Valley, California, USA

May 11, 2019



"Have a good day."
... derived from Brother Layamon's chronicle Brut's "Habbeð alle godne dæie", circa 1205

"Be a good day."
... Laurence Platt, circa 2019

"The Vedic pundits of India of five thousand years ago noted when the naming word for any object was uttered in the Sanskrit language by a saint, that object would manifest and materialize out of nothing."
... ancient Hindu legend, circa 3000 BC
This essay, Be A Good Day, is the companion piece to Naked Presence: Deploying A New Grammar.

It is also the twenty fourth in an open group on Language:
  1. Last Word
  2. Speaking Of Freedom
  3. The Transformation Of The World
  4. Constituted In Language
  5. Zen Bland
  6. Source Of Zen Bland: Hand Grasps Itself?
  7. Linguistic Acts
  8. Language: The Scalpel Of Experience
  9. Wordsmith
  10. Source Quote
  11. Being And Acting Out-Here: Presence Of Self Revisited
  12. My Word In The Matter
  13. You Are What You Speak
  14. Residue Of Meaning
  15. The Effortless Breakthrough
  16. The World's Conversation
  17. Read To Us
  18. Everything You Say
  19. Breakfast With The Master IV: Language As Music
  20. Leading With My Word
  21. Language And Results
  22. No, It's What You Say  About It
  23. Located Inside Language
  24. Be A Good Day
in that order.

I am indebted to my children Alexandra Lindsey Platt and Christian Laurence Platt and Joshua Nelson Platt who inspired this conversation.




Language. Ah, language! More than merely the ability to verbalize and make noise, there's a kind of language that has a power to alter the very quality (if not the very fabric) of Life itself - you know, the "In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God, and the word was God"  kind of language? That  kind of language. Language has the power to shut things down entirely or to seriously limit them or to open them up wide and limitless, and even to generate something from nothing. Literally. That's a takeaway from any experience of Werner's work (or giveaway  if you like, depending on your perspective and your chosen role in playing the game).

Discovering the true power of language as leverage in life, starts with being open to the possibility that the way language leverages most effectively and therefore works best, may not always be in the form of or in the expressions with which we've become familiar and whose use we take for granted. Transformation calls me to fit my language to my Self-expression, not vice versa. Be careful: this isn't a debate. It isn't a position for you to sign up for or to vote on or to evaluate to see if you agree with me or not (I'm not canvassing you). Rather it's a positive proposition to try on for size. And if it fits, take it, it's yours. And if it doesn't, walk on, it's not.

Here's something else to consider as this inquiry gains traction: the opposite of brilliance may not be stupidity. It may simply be not knowing - in the sense of "having not yet discovered". We deploy language in so many ways which are both ordinary and familiar. Yet unexamined, these ways simply cement our erroneous concepts of ourselves and our natural power, into not who we are - certainly into smaller than who we really are, unfortunately falling a far cry from what we're truly capable of.

For example, take something banal, something milquetoast, something never examined albeit in such widespread use as to be considered ubiquitous: saying "Have a good day" which in one form or another, has been around unexamined since the thirteenth century. Contrast it with "Be  a good day" which is most certainly unusual usage. Yet I assert it works much  better than "Have a good day", the usual usage. How so? Because it calls forth  something way more profound, way more powerful than "Have a good day.". "Oh? What do you mean by that, Laurence?". And well may you ask. Try this out: "Have a good day" (which is to say our languaging  "Have a good day") cedes our power over the possible good, to the day ie to accommodating whatever the day dishes up; whereas "Be a good day" cedes our power over the good day, to ourselves and to whatever qualities we choose to generate and bring forth into and to and over the day (Man! I really  want you to get that ...).

Look: we can all tell "Be a good day" doesn't sound like ordinary language. That's because it isn't. It exemplifies extra-ordinary language. Your second grade school ma'am English teacher would throw a fit if she heard you say it. That said, it's an example of what's known in the world of transformation as generative  language. Try it out for yourself. Try it on for size. Say "Have a good day" for yourself. Listen where it comes from. Listen where it lands. Listen what it brings with it. Then say "Be a good day" for yourself. Listen where it comes from. Listen where it lands. Listen what it brings with it. If you're paying close attention, you'll get the distinction clearly. Moreover if you're paying attention, you'll get you've generated  a wide open, good day from nothing, by deploying language alone (no, not  "affirmed": "generated").

More than that, if you're watching and listening astutely for what this reveals, you'll also realize how long we've obfuscated and ignored the power of language to open things up wide and limitless. Look: this isn't a new skill we've just taught ourselves. Rather, generating something from nothing through language, is an inherent ability humans have had all along yet never fully recognized ... at least not till Werner challenged us to re-evaluate all of it, and to take it out on to the track for a test drive.



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© Laurence Platt - 2019 Permission