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


Born Into It II

Napa Valley, California, USA

September 22, 2022

"You don't ask 'Why me?'  when it's raining." ...   speaking with Laurence Platt in Encounters With A Friend #30 (You Don't Ask "Why Me?" When It's Raining II) 
"You don't think it. It thinks you." ... 
"We didn't start the fire, it was always burning since the world's been turning." ... Billy Joel
This essay, Born Into It II, is the companion piece to

When we look at where we came from and how we got here (as we're wont to do from time to time) indeed when we look at what we're doing in the world (not "what we're doing in the world" in the "What are we up to here?" sense but "what we're doing in the world" in the perplexed "What are we doing  here?" sense), it will seem obvious to us that we were born into it. How so? So: we were born, yes? We're here, yes? So QED  (Quad Erat Demonstrandum): we were born into the world. Yes?

Well ... no, not quite. Upon further reflection there may not be a great deal of validity or even any accuracy in saying "We were born into the  world". To wit, "We were born into a  world" is more likely it (it's actually a more transformed  distinction to refer to being born into "a world" rather than being born into "the world"). And even true-er than "We were born into a world" is "We were born into many  worlds (plural)". Really! It depends on how we define "world" (which may require giving up our beliefs about what we consider a "world" to be). For the time being at least, saying "We were born into it ie we were born into the world" is good enough for jazz.

Now wait. While it may be obvious to say we were born into the world, what's not so obvious is that being born into it, we were also born into its already conflicts, its already thinking, its already ways of being, it's already issues. You know, what we consider to be our personal  conflicts in family, relationship, culture and country? our personal thinking and thoughts? our personal ways of being? our personal issues? Maybe none of that is personal after all. Maybe we were born into all of that too!  It was all already going on long before you and I got here. Yes we consider  our conflicts, our thinking, our ways of being, our issues etc to be personal ie as if we have something to do with them (and them with us) when it's just not personal at all. Try this on for size: it shows up  personal, occurs  as personal - but it ain't personal.

And yet we make it personal. Oh boy! do we ever make it personal - we make it all about us. But listen: it's not about us. It's not personal. It's we were born into it.


It's not about us. It's not personal. We were born into it.

Look: it's all  of the above ... and  ... we can choose to be responsible for it all as well.

I'm using "to be responsible for" here not as "to blame for" but rather in the way Werner distinguishes it: as "to be cause in the matter of".

That's a subject for another conversation on another occasion.


I was driving, somewhere, in a car with Werner when he came out with this flabbergastingly bang-on-the-money  life-altering coaching nugget: "You don't ask 'Why me?'  when it's raining" he said suddenly, gazing intently out of the passenger right-side front window. It rocked me to the core. It's true: we don't, I mused. And if we do, who'd be the fool but you and I who asks "Why me?"  when it's raining? And how much more so would we be regarding everything else going on in our lives?

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