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
Browns Valley, California, USA
October 29, 2005Reposted August 14, 2020
is the companion piece to
In the day to day business of inquiring into what it is to be a human
being, don't you wonder why it takes us so long to come up with an
answer to that seemingly most innocuous of all questions "Who are
you?"? - and why, if we do come up with any answers at all, do they
tend to be so endearingly and naïvely trite, like our names, or
what we do for a living, or our identities (or that which with we
identify) like "I am the mother of / the father of ..."?
We are, after all, human beings. That much is obvious. Yet when we
inquire into what being human is - I mean what being human
really is - it may be (at least within the context of some
belief systems) many lifetimes before we come up with any
(contrast that daunting prospect with Werner's work which delivers
that essential experience in mere days ...)
How perplexing is this situation! We live in the world and operate in
it supposedly with sophisticated levels of acquired skills and
know-how, and yet we can't readily answer the question "Who are you?".
We can vanquish smallpox. We can get to the
We can create and use the
Yet we can't come to grips with the question "Who are you?". What
exactly is that? What is our lot that with everything we
got and with everything we've accomplished, that we can't answer or
find answers to the question "Who are you?"? What exactly is that
Could it be with respect to who we really are, that we're all just
impostors? By that I mean we're carrying on a pretense
of living authentically. We're faking it, getting by, pretending no one
sees we aren't who we pretend to be. And with a bravado which comes
replete with the smirk of ignorance, we live the lie that it doesn't
matter, that no one can tell anyway, that living while only pretending
to be who we are, is alright.
No, it's worse than that. It's that prior to the onset of
transformation, we have no choice in the matter of living
and being that way. We're on full automatic: it (the
automaticity) lives our lives. That's the
it fakes us. We've no choice but to pretend we're
who we aren't. We don't have a choice but to be impostors.
Or do we?
If you require a way out of this dilemma, the way out is arguably even
more ironic than the dilemma itself. The way to reinstate authenticity
when you discover you're an impostor is by being an impostor.
Distinguishing being an impostor when you're an impostor
creates the possibility of being authentic. It's pretending not to be
an impostor when you're an impostor, that's
It's notable that creating the distinction of yourself as an
impostor" is authentic. To repeat that
and completely: when you create the distinction "impostor", who you are
is the distinguisher of "impostor", who you are is a languager of the
distinction "impostor". As a languager of the distinction "impostor"
you're not an impostor. That's the irony: the languager of distinctions
is authentic. That's who we are: languagers of distinctions. Until we
discover that, we're impostors all.