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


Everything That Gets In The Way Of My Life

Muir Beach, California, USA

Memorial Day, May 27, 2013



This essay, Everything That Gets In The Way Of My Life, is the second in a group of three written on Memorial Day:

Transforming your life, it could be said, is nothing more (and nothing less) than taking on being cause in the matter of your life. Transforming your life, it could be said, is a stand  you take.

No, you don't take this stand because it's the right thing to do. Neither is it a stand you take because there's proof it's true. Nor is it a stand you take because you've become convinced (so now you believe) you really are  cause in the matter of your life. Rather, you take this stand purely as a declaration. In other words you're cause in the matter of your life because you say so. In this sense, transforming your life is nothing more (and nothing less) than a linguistic act. When you say you're cause in the matter of your life, you are  ... because you say you are, and who you are is your word.

Listen! That's profound: you're cause in the matter of your life because you say you are, and who you are is your word.

When I declared I'm cause in the matter of my life, the universe shifted. That's a lot closer to the truth than it sounds. Life as I knew it until that moment, ended. It was all over for Laurence Platt. In retrospect this wasn't improbable. Neither was it unexpected. The universe always  shows up at all moments under all circumstances 100% congruent with how I'm being and in particular with who  I'm being. There are no exceptions to this - ever. So there's one order of things which shows up for me when I'm not being cause in the matter of my life. And there's an entirely new order of things which shows up for me when I'm being cause in the matter of my life.

That's why when I say the universe shifted and "it was all over for Laurence Platt", it may sound like I'm being way too dramatic. I'm not. I'm actually being stone cold flat footed plain straight. No exaggerating. Honest. Simply stating the obvious. That's what happened. If anything, saying "it was all over for Laurence Platt" under  states what happened.

I've talked with hundreds and hundreds of people (maybe thousands) about the / their first moment of transformation. It's reconfirmed over and over again: when a person first stands for being cause in the matter of their life (which is to say when a person first gets the possibility  of being cause in the matter of their life), it's a stunning  turn of events. It's stunning given what's gone before, given the blame that's gone before, given the guilt that's gone before, given the sense of inferiority  that's gone before, given the victim-ness that's gone before. None of blame, guilt, sense of inferiority, and victim-ness are personal. All these effects are simply those which occur naturally for us human beings in the absence of transformation, in the absence of taking a stand for being cause in the matter of our lives. In this sense, they're predictable  effects. And predictably these effects begin to break up and disappear in the process of Life itself  when you live your life transformed ie when you live your life as the stand you're cause in the matter of your life.

It's freeing. It's totally open to and accepting of whatever I intend to do next. This is my real  life. This is who I really am, and what I got is this: all I want to do is live this to the max 24 / 7 / 365 as vigorously as I can as long as I can and share as much of it as I can as widely as possible with as many people as possible before I die.

Now, when I first saw this future, that's exactly the same time as I also started noticing everything that gets in the way of me living my life to the max.

Wait. "... everything that gets in the way of you living your life to the max  ..."? Like what? What do you mean, Laurence?

Well ... for starters: hours and hours and hours  waiting in traffic, waiting for the lights to change, waiting to pay tolls at the tollbooth, waiting at the ramp to get on to the freeway, waiting at the ramp to get off  the freeway. All added up, this is hundreds and hundreds  of hours of my life wasted just waiting  when I could be living  my life ie when I could be living my life to the max.

Then there's paperwork and bills to pay, all the financial matters which have to be attended to. There's balancing my checkbook. There's filing  bills and payments with the correct annotations so they get paid on time. There's receipts for purchases to be compiled and stored and assigned the right chart of accounts code so they're ready when it's time to file taxes. Taxes!  It's not paying  taxes which gets in the way of my life. It's the two to three weeks spent every year of my life preparing and filing taxes which keeps me otherwise occupied and gets in the way of me living my life to the max.

Then there are the torrents  of unsolicited unwanted incoming communications which, even minimally, require my time to deal with, which get in the way of me living my life to the max. There are sales pitches by telephone (thank God for caller-id:  at least I can squash some of these). There's junk mail  which I recycle and / or call to request it's termination, all of which takes hours each month to manage. The latest forms of junk mail (junk faxes  and junk text messages)  take more of my time and attention. And of course there are the tidal waves of spam, junk e-mail in which the internet is awash, which requires time to block and purge, and in so doing gets in the way of me living my life. It distracts me. It's an intrusion for me to handle, an intrusion which I'd rather not have to deal with at all.

These are just a few of hundreds of examples of everything that gets in the way of my life, the handling / managing of which gets in the way of me living my life to the max. But wait! There's more. There's shopping for groceries and essentials. There's housework. There's laundry. And can you imagine how many pounds  of cobwebs would eventually accumulate in the amazing Cowboy Cottage by the meadow if left unattended? I'd rather be doing anything  than getting rid of cobwebs. There are simple chores like taking out the garbage, simple repetitive chores which have to be done, and which over the course of my lifetime will consume a major portion of the free hours available to me to live my life on the planet to the max.

One day as I listened Werner intently  as he masterfully put together the body of distinctions which would become Mission Control, I realized all these things which distract me from taking maximum advantage of the opportunity it is to live Life fully, all these things the handling / managing of which get in the way of me living my life to the max, all these simple repetitive chores which over the course of a lifetime consume hundreds if not thousands of free hours of my life during which I could be doing something else instead with leverage, something else instead like making Werner's work more far flung, more widely available, I realized all these things, every one of these distractions and intrusions, everything that gets in the way of my life, ... is  ... my  ... life.



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