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

Famous Writer

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

July 15, 2018

"We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time." ... Thomas Stearns "TS" Eliot, Four Quartets #4: Little Gidding, circa 1942

This essay, Famous Writer, is the companion piece to The Only Worthwhile Fame.

It was conceived and written at the same time as I am indebted to Kimile "Kimi" Pendleton and to Jermaine La Jaune Jackson and to Joanne Kathleen "JK" Rowling who inspired this conversation.

A friend of mine delivered a heartfelt eulogy before a group of family and friends, for a woman who died way too soon, someone I loved passionately, praising her, extolling her dynamism and her energy, lauding her life and her vast, far-reaching self-made empire. I wasn't there. I was in another state over a thousand miles away at the time. But I'd scheduled an occasion to be there with them in spirit. And I was. At the exact moment, I stopped doing what I was doing, and I was there. The gist of her eulogy was relayed to me later. One of the things she shared with that group was "She's loved by the" (quote unquote) "famous writer, Laurence Platt.".

I was deeply touched that she shared our relationship with that company (it moved me to tears actually). I did love her. No, it's more than that: it's I was crazy  about her. I still am. But listen: if you really love someone and they die, you can shift your love into a new realm (if you will) which, when done successfully, will reveal your love to be effortlessly intact, with no struggle to it (true love transcends death). It wasn't until much, much  later that the second detail of what she said hit me like a bolt out of the blue, like a ton of bricks, a delayed reaction. "What? Really?"  I said to myself when it replayed itself in my mind the next day, "Dude, you're famous?".

Actually when the truth of it is told, I don't (want to) think of myself that way. But I'm clear someone else does. And now, she having spoken it before that group, it's how others listen it too. OK. So, taking my preening ego by the hand, I walked into my bathroom, looked at my face in the mirror, and said "Famous writer, eh?" to my reflection, then puffed out my cheeks as big as they'd go, poked out my tongue as far as it would go, and blew myself a big, fat, loud, spittle-slobbering razzie.

Fame. Be careful of what you aspire to. Ask anyone whose fame has cost them any and all semblances of privacy (that's a take-away from a remarkable conversation I had with Jermaine Jackson, Michael's brother, at their family home): fame comes at a price - a steep  price. And it's not always a good deal or a great bargain. More often than not, it isn't. Indeed, there may be nothing  worthwhile about it at all. That said, there is one thing I think it just may be worth being famous for.

In giving consideration to what it may be, there are, for example, famous writers who are really more than just famous, indeed they're even more than very  famous: they're über-famous. Their fame is gargantuan. They're the writers whose works bring forth fantastic alternate worlds, incredible imaginative scenarios, and lifestyles which are alluring, attractive, and coveted. And it's not required that you live in an alternate world or change your current scenario or have a particular lifestyle, to live in the worlds of their creations. All that's required of you is that you read what they write. That's the magical, catalyzing, transportive art and power of their writing.

It's gotta  be attractive. And the job pays very  well: just ask JK. Yet her particular mastered genre of creating, as much as I respect and admire her vast creative talents (not to mention her humble coffee-shop, scrawling-on-paper-napkins origins - that's the part I simply adore)  is not what calls me. I'm not interested in adding to and augmenting the extensive (and ever-expanding) catalog of fantasies which are already on offer to us. I'm not interested in creating any alternate worlds for us.

What I'm interested in creating is this  world ie in creating the world in which we already live. And I'm interested in bursting our inauthentic fantasy balloons. I'm also interested in pole-axing the monuments and signposts we create to alternate worlds. I'm committed to revealing, arguably for the first time, the actual world in which we really live. In aspiring to this, I've got no interest in being famous or well-known. I like it that I can do what I do, and still be in my own space by ... my ... Self.

So now with all that said, there is a kind of fame, a certain kind of fame which may be worthwhile aspiring to. I'm not just suggesting it for myself. I'm suggesting it as a kind of fame it may be worthwhile for each and every one of us to aspire to. What could that be? Consider the fame of (ie the being famous for) being who you really are. It's the kind of fame every single one of us human beings are born into like a possibility. It's the kind of being famous that may just be worth aspiring to.

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