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




On Being With The Automaticity

Portland, Oregon, USA

December 11, 2019



"For after all, the best thing one can do when it is raining is let it rain." ... Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

This essay, On Being With The Automaticity, is the second in a trilogy written in Portland Oregon, December 2019:
  1. You Will Never Have To Be That Way Again
  2. On Being With The Automaticity
  3. On Reaching The End
in that order.

The trilogy written in Portland Oregon, December 2019 is the prequel to Breakthrough In Family.




Foreword To On Being With The Automaticity:

You'll notice that unlike many other essays in this Conversations For Transformation internet series of essays, the body of this essay contains no hyperlinks.

That doesn't mean anything, and nor does it bode anything for the future of these essays.

Rather it's just the way this particular one turned out.



Given the premium we, our culture, our society, indeed our entire western way of life put on our individuality and our power to control our own lives, it's almost totally unconfrontable (at least at first) exactly how much of our lives are on full automatic, a fact that relentlessly and unmercifully pierces the illusion of our having any control. Individuality and control, it seems, appear in an entirely new light and are challenged disconcertingly when the truth's told about our automaticity. Watch this:

Thoughts and memories come ... and they go, automatically. "No they don't!"  you protest, "I think  my thoughts.". I'm sorry, but that's an ancient illusion that dies hard. There's a simple test which shows exactly how automatic thoughts coming and going are. It's this: if you're the one thinking your thoughts, then stop  thinking them. Try it. You can't, can you? Thoughts and memories are on automatic.

Feelings and emotions come ... and they go, automatically. "No they don't!" you protest, "I feel  my feelings and emotions" ("I feel" them, in the sense that "I control" them). I'm sorry, but that's another ancient illusion that dies hard. There's also a simple test which shows exactly how automatic feelings and emotions are. It's this: if you're the one feeling your feelings, then feel good when you're feeling bad. Try it. You can't, can you? That's r-i-g-h-t:  isn't feeling good when you're feeling bad, the holy grail of emotional control? And as of now, have you found the holy grail of emotional control? Tell the truth: really?  Feelings and emotions are on automatic.

Bodily sensations come ... and they go, automatically. "No they don't!" you protest, "I control  my bodily sensations.". I'm sorry, but that's another ancient illusion that dies hard. There's also a simple test which shows exactly how automatic bodily sensations are. It's this: if you're the one who's controlling your bodily sensations, then put your hand in (or even close to) a furnace without experiencing heat. Try it. You can't, can you? Bodily sensations are on automatic.

Representations  come... and they go, automatically. "No they don't!" you protest, "I conceive  representations.". I'm sorry, but that's another ancient illusion that dies hard. There's also a simple test which shows exactly how automatic representations are. It's this: if you're the one who's conceiving your representations, then open your eyes in the city without  seeing buildings; open your ears on the freeway without  hearing traffic. Try it. You can't, can you? Representations are on automatic.

So at least until we have a new context in which to consider this strange, almost unconfrontable state of affairs (that we have any control, is one of our greatest and most cherished misconceptions), it's arguably true to say it's all  on automatic, which begs the questions "Who's (or what's) in control? Who's (or what's) in charge?".

But that's a subject for another conversation on another occasion. For now, let's see if we can just be with the automaticity (you have to be with it to get to know it).

Rather than "I think my thoughts", the truth is closer to "Thoughts think me.". Rather than "I feel feelings and emotions", the truth is closer to "Feelings and emotions feel me.". Rather than "I control bodily sensations", the truth is closer to "Bodily sensations control me.". Rather than "I conceive representations", the truth is closer to "Representations conceive me.". Consider letting in ie consider the possibility that it's all  on automatic. Start considering being (ie how to be in alignment) with all the automaticity. If it's all on automatic, then being in alignment with (living with) all the automaticity, is an easy and limitlessly powerful access to being truly authentic.



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