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
Grass Valley, Sierra Foothills, California, USA
July 17, 2005
Being there. It means many things to many people.
and the ability to maintain it at all times. Enlightenment and the
completion of or the solution to the ongoing inner inquiry. Living the
fruition of our most cherished dreams of how we see ourselves and our
lives eventually turning out.
For many, being there implies waiting until some obscure secret has
been learned. For others, being there implies having undone all the
wrong mental twists and turns carried forward from the past. For me
personally, being there would be living a life which always
automatically and would not require much effort on my part (I had not
yet distinguished responsibility then).
But like Gertrude Stein said referring to her razed childhood home in
Oakland California "There's no there there" (erroneously
assumed to refer to Oakland itself), there's no there
being there either.
We turn to science, to religion, to beer, to stream of consciousness
for solace to fill the space when the stars and the
offer none. This couldn't be it, we say. This isn't the
way it's supposed to be, we say. There's gotta be more
than this, we say ... in the lilting intonation of a question even
though it's spoken as an exclamation.
I assert the source of this state of affairs when we live in a world to
which we don't ascribe this-is-it-ness has more to do with how
we're naturally constructed and less to do with
something being wrong
with us or with the world in which we're living or with any situation
or set of circumstances in it.
Consider this: there's a guard - your mind - to look after your Being.
The guard adheres to this formula: to protect your Being it can't
be your Being. Although your mind and your Being are one in the
creature you are, oneness isn't a useful distinction for a guard to
make. A guard needs to keep an eye on its charge. To do that it has to
separate itself from its charge.
This is how the illusion of duality and separation is born and becomes
entrenched in the
I propose regarding
"this isn't it"
not as a statement originating from your Being nor as a statement about
Life. If it were either, it would be patently absurd. How can this not
be it, when plainly we're here? Rather it's a statement originating
from your mind about your Being. When your mind says
"this isn't it",
it's not speaking about Life. It's speaking about your Being as it
distinguishes itself from your Being in order to guard it. Your mind
must say this because it's built into its function to say
it. If it wasn't, it couldn't guard your Being.
The lifeguard with a wary eye stays out of the pool ...
It's the lot of we human beings coming from
"this isn't it"
to muddy our pool by making the distinction "being there" in the first
place - like a goal to attain or a better way to be. Inevitably the
implication in distinguishing being there, is that we aren't there, or
that we aren't there yet, both of which foster ennui.