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


Fahrenheit In A Celsius World

Chicago, Illinois, USA

August 8, 2004



This essay, Fahrenheit In A Celsius World, is the companion piece to Wheel Alignment.



I grew up in a Fahrenheit world. I think inside the paradigm of a Fahrenheit world. I don't think inside the paradigm of a Celsius world. In a Fahrenheit world, 32° is freezing; 40° is uncomfortably cold; 100° is a very, very hot day. In a Celsius world, 32° is comfortably warm; 40° is a very, very hot day; a 100° day would be a killer - literally.

Getting temperature in Celsius is strange to me - odd, offputting, and unfamiliar. I have it that compared to a Celsius world, a Fahrenheit world is normal, right, and clearer. Recently I started to notice how that renders my communication with a Celsius world ineffective. I think in a Fahrenheit world speaking Fahrenheit world notions in Fahrenheit into a Celsius world where people think and speak in Celsius.

Reality is it's cold, comfortable, or hot regardless of what scale is used to measure temperature. It's not that I can't translate from one scale to the other. I can. I learned how to do that in high school. It's simply that I'm thrown  not to. I'm thrown to stay with the scale with which I'm most familiar.

Consider a Fahrenheit world as a world of transformation. Consider a Celsius world as all other worlds. It requires a stretch to communicate transformation effectively with worlds in which transformation isn't already present. It's also human to not know how to stretch this way.

It seems to me effective communication with a Celsius world occurs when I in a Fahrenheit world listen for the concerns of a Celsius world, then speak to those concerns in Celsius, or at least start training myself to do so. But that's not a liability, and transformation doesn't equate to comfort. What transformation is is being in Conversations For Transformation. When you're not in Conversations For Transformation then you're not transformed.

Making it your personal business to take on communicating with a Celsius world from a Fahrenheit world may not be familiar territory nor easy nor comfortable. Yet stretching to take this on is a requirement if you intend to speak transformation which enrolls and empowers your listeners.



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