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


Laurence Platt Audio

Laurence Platt Audio

Carpinteria, California, USA

December 27, 2012



This essay, Laurence Platt Audio, is the companion piece to I am indebted to my daughter Alexandra Lindsey Platt who inspired this conversation and contributed material.



This essay, Laurence Platt Audio, is a long time coming. It isn't so much for the opportunity to bring my voice  into the Conversations For Transformation internet context. That's already been done - in two video groups: Rather what this is, is an opportunity to read to you something I've written ie it's an opportunity to bring my spoken  word to bear on my written  word.

I assert the true transformational art form is face to face  speaking and listening ie the domain of the spoken word. Writing and reading is only a not so close approximation. I've distinguished this divide, if you will, repeatedly in these Conversations For Transformation. As long as I keep telling the truth about it, there's no integrity violation  in what could be misconstrued as attempts to pass off the written word of these essays as the authentic domain ie as the authentic milieu  of transformation.

Suggestions and requests have been made many times during these past ten years for me to record myself reading Conversations For Transformation then to provide the audio from links in each essay's webpage, and as audiobooks  etc. It's an attractive idea. But it's one I've eschewed ongoingly in the past and which I continue to eschew today.

Here's why.

While it really is  an attractive idea, it's simply not pragmatic - and it's not pragmatic paradoxically enough given the flexible nature of the medium in which these Conversations For Transformation come alive: the internet. The internet provides a flexibility way beyond that which printed materials and books provide. I exploit this flexibility fully. It gives me the opportunity to update, amend, refine, and perfect essays many, many times over after they're published - a freedom which chiseled in stone  printed materials and books don't give.

Updating the text of these essays on the internet is one thing when changing as little as a single word here or a subtle phrasing there. It makes the difference between acceptable communication and scintillating  communication. But it's something else entirely to then re-read and re-record the whole essay every time if (as is often the case) only one or two of its words are changed, in order to maintain congruency  between its audio and written forms.

For this reason I maintain Conversations For Transformation in the written form only, adding the qualifier that the written word is only a not so close approximation to the spoken word ie the written word is only a not so close approximation to the authentic milieu of transformation. This completes it for me.

That said, I got the idea of recording myself reading Conversations For Transformation, not from suggestions and requests to record them, but from Werner.
Werner and I sat face to face on chairs directly opposite each other during a private tête à tête. He asked about my life. I shared what was going on. When I'd done that, I asked if there was anything I could do for him. After a pregnant pause he said "Yes. Read  to me.".

Taken aback, and yet completely delighted to fulfill his request, I opened my Lenovo T61  ex-IBM ThinkPad  laptop computer to read an essay from the Conversations For Transformation internet series for him. I chose A House On Franklin Street titled after the house on Franklin Street in San Francisco (ie the Franklin House  as it's known), Werner's erstwhile home, the extraordinary monastery within a monastery.

My experience of reading A House On Franklin Street to Werner reaffirmed what I already knew, which is this: the way I sound  to myself when I'm writing Conversations For Transformation isn't the way I sound to myself when I'm reading them, and it's certainly not the way I sound to myself when I'm speaking  transformation in my day to day face to face conversations.

As an experiment  in creating audio of myself reading Conversations For Transformation, I chose a piece which is least likely to change (because it's stable): my introduction to Conversations For Transformation on the home page. You can listen this audio by pressing the play  button of the audio control  at the top of this page or by pressing the play button of the audio control at the end of this page, or by pressing the play button of the audio control below the banner headers at the top of the home page.

I discovered I can read a piece of my writing, sounding exactly as if I'm reading a piece of my writing (I made some recordings which sounded like this, then discarded then) ... or  ... I can read a piece of my writing, sounding as if I'm speaking transformation with you in a day to day face to face conversation. Going for the latter calls me to rigorously distinguish my speaking voice as the instrument of transformation.


Laurence Platt Audio


Communication Promise E-Mail | Home

© Laurence Platt - 2012 through 2016 Permission