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


One Foot In Front Of The Other

The Meritage, Napa Valley, California, USA

April 18, 2017



"It is important that you get clear for yourself that your only access to impacting life is action. The world does not care what you intend, how committed you are, how you feel, or what you think, and certainly it has no interest in what you want and don't want. Take a look at life as it is lived and see for yourself that the world only moves for you when you act."
 ... 
"It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop."
 ... Confucius
This essay, One Foot In Front Of The Other, is the companion piece to Dancing With My Mouth.

I am indebted to Anita Lynn Erhard who inspired this conversation.




The Cha Cha Cha

Sculpture by Robin Murez

1/4 inch polished engraved stainless steel, 4 feet by 6
feet, flush on sidewalk for pedestrians to discover and
dance

The Riverfront, Main Street, Napa, California, USA

2011
One Foot In Front Of The Other
There's no point in comparing what Werner Erhard says, to what Confucius says (that's not why I've quoted them both). To do so ie to automatically, knee-jerkingly  compare anyone to anyone and / or anything to anything, is an oft-undistinguished malaise of the mind.

In regard to what people say, what's more useful is to differentiate between people whose language describes  the world ie people whose language talks about  the world, and people whose language generates a context  for the world. That for me is a useful distinction to make - not because it makes one type of person better  than another (which it doesn't) and not because it makes one type of saying better than another (which it isn't) but rather because it brings forth the mostly hidden power of language.

Confucius is right in saying "It does not matter how slowly you go ...". But he may have imposed an unnecessary distraction when he added "... as long as you don't stop".

Listen: it's OK  to stop. You can stop. You don't have  to not stop. Try this on for size: the only thing you have  to do? is die.

<aside>

It's also sometimes said the only thing you have to do is be.

That's true if you define to "be" as to "exist".

But if you define to "be" as to "wholeheartedly, creatively, consciously, intentionally be vibrantly alive and live full on"  rather than simply to "exist", then you don't have to "be" either - in which case then yes: the only thing you have  to do is die.

<un-aside>

So what I find useful is to hold what Confucius says, in the context  of what Werner says when discerning your only access to impacting life is action. When you get the full power of what Werner's saying here, you get that the kind of being in action he's referring to, is being in action freely at choice, rather than being in action as required or (worse) coerced. Given that being in action is our only access to impacting life, our choice isn't merely to act or not  act: our choice is to not act ... or  ... to impact life. And that's a much bigger game  to play, a game which calls for bravery, audacity, and courage, when the alternative is acting just in order to survive.

[... being continued ...]



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