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

Love Means Nothing

Muir Beach, California, USA

July 19, 2009

"Love is granting another the space to be the way they are and the way they aren't so they can change if they want to and they don't have to."  ... 
This essay, Love Means Nothing, is the fifth in a group of twenty one on Love:

The title of this essay, Love Means Nothing, doesn't refer to the tennis use of "love"  as nothing, as in "Federer is ahead forty love"  (in plain English, Federer is up forty to zip in this set). That use of "love"  as nothing  comes from "l'oeuf", the French word for egg because the ovoid shape of an egg resembles a zero ie nothing.

Another use of "love"  as nothing  comes from the English phrase for neither love nor money:  "You won't get me up in an airplane - for neither love nor money"  (in other words, "No Way  José!").

Neither is Love Means Nothing trivializing or deriding love. To be sure, the phrase it "means nothing"  can be trivializing and deriding, as in "It means nothing  to me people are starving as long as I've got enough to eat.". The "means nothing" in Love Means Nothing isn't trivializing or deriding love - just the opposite, in fact.

Interimly the implication of Love Means Nothing is it leaves the significance  out of love, allowing love to be  - natural, unencumbered, and easy. Ultimately the implication of Love Means Nothing is it assigns nothing  to love so love can allow people and things to be  - natural, unencumbered, and easy. This allowing people and things to be as they are  (as Werner Erhard may have said) is the only worthwhile definition of love I can think of.

If you love me, that is if you say  you love me, then I want you to be with me in what I suppose could be considered a most unusual way: I want you to be with me by leaving me alone. I want you to let me be who I'm being. I want you to accept me being who I'm being because not only is that who I'm being but also because it's my intention to be who I'm being. If you say you love me, you'll leave me alone to be who I'm being, and in that way you'll know the authentic ecstatic intimacy that's only possible between two human beings who grant each other the space to be who they really are.

If you leave me alone in this way, if you let me be, then I can ... be ... my ... Self  ... with you. And if there's any one thing you can do that's guaranteed 100% certain to make you very, very  attractive to me and to raise my love for you, it's to let me be my Self  with you. When you grant me that space, when you allow me to be who I am without trying to change me (although you may support me changing if I want to change), I can instantly be love with you.

Notice I didn't say I can instantly be in  love with you. That's fraught with waaay  too many concepts, too many beliefs, and too many naïve storybook expectations to capture my interest. I said I can instantly be  love with you. That's because you, being your Self, granting me the space to be my Self, allows me, being my Self, to grant you the space to be your Self. This is what love really is. And what it takes to bring real love forth is nothing. It's already here. We're already who we are. There's nothing  to do.

That's what it takes: nothing! Love means  nothing.

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