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

Essays - Eleven Years Later:


Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

August 17, 2014

This essay, Essays - Eleven Years Later: Unimaginable, is the companion piece to Incredible.

It is also the eleventh annual State Of The Union  celebration of Conversations For Transformation:
  1. Essays - One Year Later: Critical Mass
  2. Essays - Two Years Later: Glass Walled Studio
  3. Essays - Three Years Later: Internet Presence
  4. Essays - Four Years Later: Side By Side
  5. Essays - Five Years Later: Arm In Arm
  6. Essays - Six Years Later: A Very Good Year
  7. Essays - Seven Years Later: By My Self
  8. Essays - Eight Years Later: Riding The Open Range
  9. Essays - Nine Years Later: Recreation
  10. Essays - Ten Years Later: Decade
  11. Essays - Eleven Years Later: Unimaginable
  12. Essays - Twelve Years Later: A New Beginning
  13. Essays - Thirteen Years Later: A Certain Space
  14. Essays - Fourteen Years Later: Lenses Of Creativity
  15. Essays - Fifteen Years Later: Essence
  16. Essays - Sixteen Years Later: It's All In The Mouth
  17. Essays - Seventeen Years Later
  18. Essays - Eighteen Years Later: The Heart Of The Matter
  19. Essays - Nineteen Years Later: On Being Used By Something Bigger Than Myself
in that order.

It is also the sequel to You Don't Only Take A Stand When The Odds Are In Your Favor.

I am indebted to Bruce Preville and to the Friends of Werner Erhard who inspired this conversation, and to Charlene Afremow who contributed material.

Conversations For Transformation - click to expand
Conversations For Transformation
Essays By Laurence Platt
Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard
And More
It's eleven years later. It doesn't seem like eleven years, does it? It seems like a much briefer moment in time, a brief moment out of  time in fact. It would have been unimaginable  eleven years ago that by the end of this year, your generous listening would have inspired and sustained one thousand essays in this Conversations For Transformation internet series. Yet the evidence is this is what happened. The jury's back. This is the way it turned out.

The idea of delivering one thousand essays and more, was never included in the original charter. And the original charter was pretty vague, to tell you the truth. What it was, was to simply say something valuable on the internet. And whether that would be one time only or more, even that  was vague. It wasn't structured. So there was one essay, and then there was another, and then there was another, and another. And now we're closing in on essay #1000. The way that was for me as it was unfolding, was a bit like setting out for an evening stroll, extending the walk just a little longer than usual, then a little longer, and then suddenly realizing that without thinking too much about it, I'd walked clean around the planet (Hello Forrest Gump).

At some point during that time, I got really clear about the possibility of creating one thousand essays getting a million views which could generate one thousand new website views per essay. But until the time when I invented that possibility ie until the time it dawned on me that it was actually possible, it was unimaginable. It wasn't even the possibility of a possibility.

I want to thank you for listening these Conversations For Transformation these eleven years - which is to say these first  eleven years. Really. Thank You so much. You are the space in which they come alive. You are the space in which the distinctions they re-create, become brilliant and vivid. Without you, they couldn't exist (in a very real sense neither could I).

Raison D'Etre

Without an audience listening, theatre isn't possible. Even though I've committed to do this alone ie even though I've committed to do this by ... my ... Self, the truth is without your listening, the full expression and impact of any Conversation For Transformation can never be realized. I'm not kidding! Any Conversation For Transformation is grand theatre. I experience it as a grand privilege that you trust me with your listening like this. It's this privilege which calls me to discover how to sharpen my speaking, to marshal my language to ensure you get maximum value from the time you're investing here. It's not always easy. I don't take this privilege lightly or for granted. Sharpening my word ie my language happens spontaneously and naturally by itself in the space of my respect for the time you afford me with your generous listening and your patience.

If I've provided you with something valuable, it's no accident. There's no mystery as to what this is. Neither will I permit any mystery to shroud my explicit intention for doing this. There's one and only one thing I bear in mind while publishing these Conversations For Transformation freely downloadable on the internet like this. In one form or another, it's the only thing I do - and I do it over and over again. That's right: you may have noticed Conversations For Transformation are repetitive. So to keep your interest, I have to change the subject as often as I can, although invariably this is going to result in some overlap.

Here's what I do (and this is all I do): I re-create my relationship with Werner for you in a way in which you can discover your own relationship with him. That's it. That's all. Honest! Nobody asked me to do any of this. I don't get paid for doing it. What it all is, is the heretofore unimaginable fulfillment of my intention. That's what's on offer here - nothing else. If you want it, take it - it's all yours, it's free: you don't owe me anything. If you don't want it, leave it where it is, and thank you for visiting.

Relationship With Werner

Photography by San Francisco Chronicle

Werner Erhard
It may be prudent to qualify exactly what I mean when I say I'm re-creating my relationship with Werner for you with these Conversations For Transformation. There are two aspects to it, neither of which are esoteric. Take both of them on face value. We've got such a lot of stuff  going on about relationship. It would be useful if you could discard it (at least temporarily) before reading further.

The first is I'm re-creating many of Werner's ideas  for you. The presentation, delivery, and style of these essays are all my own work. However most of the ideas recreated in these essays were first originated, distinguished, and articulated by Werner (I say "most" and not "all" because I do claim to have originated at least some of the ideas in these essays myself as well). So you could therefore translate the "relationship  with Werner" I'm re-creating for you, to the "relationship with Werner's ideas".

But the second aspect of it is much simpler, much more adult, more refined and much more mature. It's also a senior distinction, a graduate  distinction. And if the truth be told, it's also the powerhouse with unimaginable power which drives this engine. My "relationship with Werner", in this aspect, is best translated to my "friendship  with Werner". That's what's expressed on this website. That's really what's happening here. It's what's always spoken here.

There are the ideas, and there's the friendship. You can take the ideas, or you can take the friendship, or you can take both, and you can make them your own. There's no shortage of either here. There's more than enough to go around. There's an ample, inexhaustible supply of both. Now, you don't have to take either of them if you don't want to. They're my gift to you. They're my invitation to you. And as we all already know very well, genuine gifts, like genuine invitations, can be declined just as freely and without reason, without justification, and without explanation, as they can be accepted - no questions asked.

I've accepted both. That's no big deal. It's just my choice. But it is the driver of these essays. It's what makes them valuable.

Putting The Money Where The Mouth Is

A while back it would have been unimaginable that one man's experience in 1971 on the Golden Gate Bridge, shared, could have resulted in millions of people worldwide with hands on direct access  to transformation - but not simply access to transformation for themselves: as it turns out, transformation kept or unshared, isn't transformation. It's eloquent testimony to the authenticity of this transformation that the number of people experiencing it for themselves hasn't remained static - it continues to grow exponentially (and naturally, I might add: if it wasn't shared and didn't grow, again it isn't transformation).

A while back it would have been unimaginable that one man's shared experience could have resulted in hundreds if not thousands of businesses worldwide deploying the abstracts of transformation in their day to day fiscal operations.

What's fascinating about Werner's business applications of transformation is the research shows the companies, firms, and businesses deploying them, don't use them to leverage financial transactions directly ie they don't use them to address the balance sheet or the profit and loss statements directly. Rather, they use them to focus on restoring integrity to the business. Restoring integrity to the business? What a concept! Who woulda thunk?  (Wall Street? Are you listening?)

It's interesting to me that those companies deploying this technology to restore integrity to the business also, simply as a by‑product  of this process, report favorable upswings on the bottom line. Coincidence? No. Not only is it not coincidence, but these results are shown to be replicatable, repeatable, predictable, and count-on-able over and over again. It's no surprise integrity is starting to be included in companies' essential educational curricula - and not a moment too soon. And face it: eleven years ago, the idea of companies focusing on their integrity  as an essential component of their education and financial smarts, and regarding it higher than their marketing acumen as a driver of their bottom line, would have been unimaginable.

The Friends Of Werner Erhard

I'm sailing my yacht solo on an infinite sea of possibility. I'm the only sailor on this ocean. I'm whole and complete and fulfilled. I want for nothing. I'm all and everything. Suddenly on the distant horizon, I see another yacht. As it gets closer, I see it's manned by another solo sailor. It's the first time I realize I'm not alone. She's also whole and complete and fulfilled, wants for nothing, and is also all and everything. And then I see many, many yachts coming towards me over the horizon, each manned by solo sailors. They're also whole and complete and fulfilled, want for nothing, and are also all and everything.

I recognize them immediately. They are / we are the Friends of Werner Erhard  to whom I'd like to introduce you.

The best way to experience Werner is close up and face to face. However, while this isn't impossible, it's not always practical. The next best thing is to experience Werner on the internet. Building websites is obviously not the best application of Werner's personal time. So a group of us have taken on exactly that: building an internet presence  of his ideas. We do this unasked. We do it because it's natural to want to share the enormous value we've gotten from Werner's ideas. None of us are paid to do this (I personally manage my own finances responsibly in other ways so I'm free to do this). Making Werner's ideas widely available is its own reward.

In addition to my Conversations For Transformation website, there are hundreds of other websites created by the Friends of Werner Erhard worldwide, making Werner's work known. I'm listing three of them next. They each contain valuable material and many, many links to other websites. The four of them are hardly the full contingent of what's available. But with all their material and plethora of links, they're a good place to start. Their content will keep you rapt for hours and hours.

They are (in alphabetical order):

 1) (mapping for



Eleven years ago it was unimaginable there would be such an enormous internet presence of Werner's work today. There's just no stopping it now. It keeps on growing and growing exponentially, daily. Even allowing for an initial healthy skepticism, almost everyone experiencing Werner's work regards it as the  pivotal experience of their lives. That doesn't surprise me. When we gain access powerfully to who we really are and to the tools (those you already own, by the way) which enable us to live lives of possibility rather than predicament, there really is no greater gift. Really.

Thank You for Your Listening.

Thank You for Your Relationship with Werner, for your friendship with Werner, and for your inquiry into Werner's ideas.

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