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 - Seven Years Later:

By My Self

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

August 17, 2010



This essay, Essays - Seven Years Later: By My Self, is the seventh 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: Not Yet Titled (working title)
in that order.

It is also the fourth in a septology on Self:


Conversations For Transformation
Conversations For Transformation
Essays By Laurence Platt
Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard
And More
In the beginning there was nothing. Honest. Nothing!  Then there was one. Then there were two. Then there was relationship, love, affinity, and friendship inspiring me, calling me  to create Life as an incredibly amazing adventure for the next twenty five years.

Then there was the epiphany  ... and seven years after that  (which brings me to today) there are five hundred and thirty Conversations For Transformation accessible via the internet viewed a total of two hundred and forty two thousand times through a core distribution of one thousand five hundred people worldwide affording the two new Conversations For Transformation published every week close to four thousand views every month.

Five hundred and thirty Conversations For Transformation may sound  like a lot. Actually this total doesn't even begin to account for those not  written. The material for Conversations For Transformation isn't in short supply. To the contrary, it's endless. The success  of Conversations For Transformation (if, indeed, the word "success" can be used in this context) is built on the premise that who we really are is contagious, and that the way to make who we really are available in the world is to authentically share  it.

You can't understand  it. But when it's authentically shared, you can get it - or grok  it (as Robert Heinlein may have said). And given it ie the Big "IT" is endless, infinite, beyond language, vast, you can share it 24 / 7 / 365 for the rest of your life and still barely scratch its surface. Unlike money, the more you share it and give it away, the more you have. It's more than that, actually. It's this: the only way to keep it is to give it away.

One thing has become abundantly clear to me over these seven years, and it's with regard to repetition. Conversations For Transformation are all  repetitions, all replays. They're all reruns - every one  of them. Sharing who we really are is the only game in town. It's the same marvelous, magnificent, awesome, miraculous space I'm sharing each and every time  over and over and over again. So I find myself changing the subject  often, simply in order to hold your attention - hence the five hundred and thirty distinct Conversations For Transformation so far.

Yet even though they're all reruns, I don't look to earlier material when generating new Conversations For Transformation. When I generate new Conversations For Transformation I look to my Self. Literally. I look into my experience. I look into the space and I write whatever's there. I'm not intending there are lessons to learn  from these Conversations For Transformation (that's not why I write them) - and there may be. These are not orations, debates, or (worse) opinions. These essays are simply as close as I can come to sharing all of who I really am in writing, knowing when you're reading them, when you follow my train of words, the same sense of who you  really are will be enlivened for you and will become available to you.

My intention is these Conversations For Transformation don't come across as narrative writing. Nor do I intend they come across as descriptive writing. More than that, they will fail if you read them as "how tos"  or as explanations  of something. Conversations For Transformation are generative  writing. By "generative" I mean they're designed to generate an experience rather than to leave you with more knowledge or with more understanding.

As I set out down this path, I had my doubts that the kind of experience I intended to generate, the experience of who You and I really are, could ever be generated in writing. I'm clear about this now. I'm clear authentic  transformation only shows up in the domain of face to face  speaking and listening. The domain of Conversations For Transformation, writing and reading, is one degree removed from the authentic domain of transformation and is therefore not transformation.

Having said that, in this domain one degree removed from the authentic domain of transformation, it's possible the generative writing of Conversations For Transformation will get you so close  to the authentic domain of transformation that you'll almost be able to taste it - and that's good enough for jazz.

Generative writing is akin to the often touted speaking of someone who stands up in front of the room and reads verbatim at length from the dictionary or from the telephone directory, and you the listener are transformed not from what  they speak but rather from who they're being as they're speaking it.

You can't go to a writing class and learn how to write this way. In fact the only class which may be useful if you intend to convey transformation via the written word in a way which makes it taste-able would be a class which teaches how to let go of everything  you've ever learned about writing and to write from the empty, nothing, marvelous  place prior to it all, fearlessly and unflinchingly. What's got to come out if this is going to work is nothing less and nothing more than who you really are.

There's no room for concerns about embarrassment or naïvete here. Transformation, of its very nature, is naked presence, and if you're not willing to be present and stand naked (figuratively) in full view of everyone, this genre  isn't for you. If you're not willing to generate from your Self, this genre isn't for you. If you're concerned people may be reactivated by the presence of Self (yours, as well as theirs you'll tease out), this genre isn't for you.

Consider this: you don't share transformation in order to be right. You share transformation in order to share transformation. This isn't a distinction for the faint hearted. One of the new manifestations of a transformed life may be material gain, profit, assurance of security ie survival, getting better (which is valid in certain circles like competition), and being right (which is valid in certain circles like mathematics; in others, like fashion, it's simply opinion run amok). But unless transformation is held distinct  from its manifestations, it's quickly tainted and disempowered. Holding transformation as its manifestations is deadly.

The real reward, the real gain  from transformation, from being this way, the only result worth anything is the thing in itself, the such-ness of it, the thus-ness of it. If it's any more than that, it's not transformation. You can't trade in transformation. You can't deal  in it. You can't apply  it in order to help you survive.

Listen: it's very hard to let that one go. It's very hard to let go of seeing transformation in terms of material gain, profit, survival, getting saved, getting better or being right-er. Transformation's entire reward is the thing in itself. Yet the product  of heretofore unseen possibilities  which naturally come in to view in a transformed life may be all manner of riches. You can have anything you want including having the world work. That's the possibility which comes into view with transformation. When I'm writing Conversations For Transformation I'm standing in the possibility of this possibility.

In the end, none of what I've generated would be worth anything were it not for your listening. Where these Conversations For Transformation play out is in your listening. I appreciate you affording me the honor and the privilege of generating a train of words you're gracious enough to allow into your listening. In imagining how they land for you, I've trained myself as a writer.

I appreciate your feedback when things have worked. But I'm more grateful for your feedback when things haven't worked. When I see Conversations For Transformation through your eyes (and I may need to change this metaphor to say "through your ears"  instead), it's patently clear to me if something needs to be changed, or if the thing in itself  is OK the way it is. And if this is the case, I might request you sit with it in your lap like a hot brick  and watch what comes up. I'm reluctant to explain anything. That's not because I'm arrogant or uncaring or unreachable. It's simply because I'm unable to explain anything satisfactorily. Really.

I'll be doing this a while longer. There's no end in sight. If you'd like to be kept up to date when new Conversations For Transformation are posted to the internet, let me know and I'll include your name in the distribution list. And if you'd prefer to receive no more announcements, let me know and I'll remove your name immediately - no questions asked. If there's value in these Conversations For Transformation for you, take it - it's yours.

But don't thank me. Thank Werner.


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