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


Front And Center

Napa Valley, California, USA

April 1, 2010



This essay, Front And Center, was written at the same time as

I'd like to have a conversation about what it is to be present - in the sense of being available  to people.

Being present and available to people is communicated by being present and available to people. When I'm present and available to you, you get it. You get the experience I'm being present and available to you by osmosis. It's a harder row to hoe describing  what being present and available is unless the description of being present and available is accompanied by being present and available.

How do you distinguish  what it is to be present and available? You can be  present and available, but how do you describe what that is? When you're around someone who's present and available, you have a sense of the quality they're bringing forth making them present and available. You sense it ... but could you describe what it is so you can distinguish it for someone else?

For me, being present and available is taking charge of, occupying, and owning the front and center  position, so to speak, being source and communicating into the World.

The way I'm deploying the phrase front and center  is as a language pointer, if you will, pointing to the experience of being present and available. When I say the experience of being present and available to people is the result of taking charge of, occupying, and owning the front and center  position, I'm pointing to being present and available like a place to stand ie like a possibility. In this place to stand like a possibility, people are in front  of me, and are the center  of my attention.

The most present and available I can be with people is when I'm front and center  with them: out there in front with people, being with them in their  conversations rather than in the conversation I've got going on in my head.

You can experience  an experience you're having. But you can't describe  an experience you're having because when you're describing the experience you're having, it's no longer the experience you're having:  it's the experience you were  having. A described experience, since description is always after the fact, is never the experience you're having now. Whenever you describe an experience you're having, describing the experience diminishes experiencing  the experience. It may even get in the way of it to the point of damaging it.

Front and center  isn't a description of the experience of being present and available. Neither is it literally where I'm standing like I'm an actor on a stage, although that's a key aspect of what being present calls for - front and center, after all, is a phrase borrowed from the world of theatre and drama. Rather, when I say I'm front and center, I'm referring to who I'm being when I'm being source - in charge of, fully occupying and owning the space, coming into the World communicating with people on behalf of and for  Life itself.

For me, what it is to be fully present and available is standing front and center in the space of communication with people.



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