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


Life On Mars

Rutherford Hill, Rutherford, California, USA

August 14, 2008



This essay, Life On Mars, is the companion piece to

You can trust me.

I'm trustworthy. Being trustworthy isn't an unusual skill some people don't develop and others do. It's not a special gift. Neither is it a talent. Trustworthiness isn't something I was born with. It's not something I have. Nor is being trustworthy something I do. Rather, it's something I be. Or, spoken with rigor, it's something I say I am.

To be trustworthy, I don't have to impose and enforce integrity in a so called fallen  state of being untrustworthy. Neither do I have to add anything to my life to be trustworthy. I don't have to rethink, reconstitute, rearrange or reset the rules within the state of being untrustworthy to be trustworthy. I don't have to modify anything in my conduct or in my behavior. Rather, to be trustworthy, the state of being untrustworthy in the past has to be completed  then taken out of the future of who I really am. Since we're already always who we really are  (think about it: it's almost an oxymoron), being trustworthy is always accessible like a possibility.

And if I say to you I'll protect you with my life, if I promise I'll uphold your confidentiality, if I make a vow I'll maintain your privacy like it's my sacred duty  to maintain it, like it's my calling  to take it on (and my privilege too), is it ever OK to speak outside of these boundaries about what goes on within them?

When you've trusted me with your safety, when you've made the keys to the kingdom  available and given me carte blanche  to open as many doors as I'm bold enough and audacious enough to attempt to open with them, when you've invited me into your living room and shed any and all semblances of protection so there's nothing in the way of being with you, totally vulnerable, naked without barriers, who's the one to author the policy statement decreeing how much of this intimacy can be shared with the world? Who says which components of it are appropriate to make available for public scrutiny, and which aren't? Who decides the appropriateness  of trust? Who makes up if trust is sometimes  or if it's eternal?

If I'm somewhere else on the planet, if I'm far away  from where I was when I promised you I'll protect you by not revealing confidentialities, privacies, or personal exchanges, is it necessary to keep that promise when the likelihood is remote that revealing confidentialities, privacies, or personal exchanges will cause any problems for you? Even if it's remotely  remote, is that the line in the sand of trust over which it's OK for me to step? How far away do I have to be for it to be OK to share our exchanges with impunity, both for myself as well as for you? How much distance does there have to be between me and the location of my original words for it to be alright to share things which, if shared in a closer environment, would  violate your privacy and cause you flagrant and unnecessary inconvenience?

If I were the solo astronaut on the first space flight to Mars, and if upon landing on its surface I found, to all of our amazement, life on Mars in a form evolved to the point where our species could communicate, and if they asked me about you, hundreds and hundreds of thousands and thousands of miles away from you, hundreds and hundreds of thousands and thousands of miles away from the promise I've made to protect you with my life, to uphold your confidentiality, to mantain your privacy like it's my sacred duty, and especially if there was no one else around  who would know whether or not I violated my promise to you, even there, even then you could trust me to keep my promise to you. That's what I'm saying.

I know who I am with you. Indeed, I know who I am thanks  to you. When I'm my word with you, that's who I am. I'm that, whether or not I'm anywhere on Planet Earth near where I made promises, near where you and I created the conversation in which those promises showed up, or whether or not I'm anywhere else, on Mars, for instance, by my Self  speaking with the life on Mars.

Other than my life with you as language, there's no other life for me that's worth living. Any life other than my life with you as language, for me isn't worth living.

Life on Mars ie the possibility of life on Mars, is just more life with you as language. In fact, life anywhere ie any where  other than here, is just more life with you as language. The glue holding it all in place everywhere  is my agreement  with you, and by being born I've already made that agreement. I've already agreed I'm trustworthy.

You can trust me.



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© Laurence Platt - 2008 through 2016 Permission