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

Leaving Everybody With More Power

Jessup Cellars, Yountville, California, USA

March 16, 2015

"You can start off anywhere you like as long as where you end up is leaving everybody with more power."  ... 
This essay, Leaving Everybody With More Power, is the companion piece to Simple But Not Easy.

It was written at the same time as I am indebted to Alan Watts who inspired this conversation.

Because of the international exposure the over one thousand essays in this Conversations For Transformation internet series of essays and the almost one million page views they've received so far grants me, I've touched a lot of people around the world. It's an intense experience, a straightening experience (if you will), a humbling  experience actually, and it's one which goeswith  (as Alan Watts may have said) a certain responsibility. This body of work however isn't directly the outcome of taking on a responsibility, or even of sharing information or something I know. In fact in this genre, what I keep discovering over and over and over again, is the more I know and think I know, the more it only gets in the way of what the opportunity at hand is. No, knowing a lot isn't where this comes from - to the contrary, actually.

Where this comes from (which is to say where this comes from if I tell the truth about it)  is standing and observing life occurring - with as little of me in the way as possible. Generating this experience is really quite easy. It's getting myself out of the way ie it's keeping my fingers out of the machinery  that's a harder undertaking.

My purpose in doing this, which is to say what's led me to do this, and what goes with the territory of putting myself out-here  on the internet in this particular genre, is to be clear about the experience, and to be a stand for it. That's it. It isn't to help  (I happen to think you don't need any help). It isn't to explain (I happen to think explanation is often a palliative  - many times it's merely an avoidance). It isn't to make things better (I happen to think things are just fine the way they are). And neither am I driven to inspire (if inspiration happens as a result, that's fine with me - it's just not the purpose with which I set out). No, my purpose is to put myself out-here, standing and observing life occurring, and to share this experience. That's all. These essays are the result of it working. They're its expression, its evidence.

It's in what could be said to be the simplest of all acts it's possible for a human being to perform, the act of standing and observing life occurring, which is where who we are shows up. All the hundreds of books written about ourselves discarded, all the various fields which study our essential nature aside, all the hours and hours and hours of therapy notwithstanding, all the years and years and years of disciplinary practices finished and done with, after all the amens  at the ends of all the prayers, what it all points to is where who we are shows up (which is to say where who we really  are shows up) is in the simplest of all possible acts: standing and observing life occurring. And I'm less interested in how  things occur than I am in the fact that things magically  do occur in the first place (given the way I am about life, for me the fact that anything  occurs at all, is magic ...). Getting stuck in the paralysis  of analysis of how  things occur, clouds fully and completely experiencing the magic.

It's who we really are directly experienced which is inspiring, empowering. I assert that's universal for each and every human being. Once who we really are is directly experienced and becomes accessible and totally familiar, it's recognized as the source of the great power in our lives. When that's realized, any of our other attempts to empower ourselves becomes at best distractions, and at worst impediments. One of our most cherished beliefs, indeed one of our most tenacious  beliefs, is the belief that we need to do something else other than exactly what we're doing currently  in order to be fully who we really are. We believe it so strongly that we're threatened whenever it looks like it may disappear, even if it never did us any good in the first place. It's essentially human that we'd rather cling to it than stand free without it.

How each of us resolves and un-does this paradox and everything we do to defend it and hold it in place, is as varied and colorful as there are people on the planet. What's not so varied, what's not different from person to person, is our individual authenticity  experienced when it all plays out, leaving everybody with more power.

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