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 Saying Nothing

Chicago, Illinois, USA

March 12, 2006

This essay, On Saying Nothing, is the third in the second trilogy Visits With A Friend:
  1. Black Brick
  2. Wet Water
  3. On Saying Nothing
in that order.
The first trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Second First Impression
  2. Do Artists Retire?
  3. Presence Of Love
in that order.
The third trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Master Of Life
  2. Face To Face
  3. Love And Kindness
in that order.
The fourth trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Personal Piece
  2. Magnum Opus
  3. Walk A Way With Me
in that order.
The fifth trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Natural Expression
  2. Essential Question
  3. There Is No "The Answers"
in that order.
The sixth trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Sophisticated Palate
  2. Open To Everyone
  3. Portal
in that order.
The seventh trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Meetings With A Remarkable Man
  2. Being Directed By The Unanswered Question
  3. Out Here
in that order.
The eighth trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Read To Us
  2. Seven Fingers
  3. Smart People
in that order.
The ninth trilogy Visits With A Friend is:
  1. Intimacy In A Crowded Place
  2. What Goes On Internally
  3. Riding The Horse Revisited
in that order.
The second trilogy Visits With A Friend is the sequel to Eye Of The Needle.

Sitting with you there's some agenda. But not much. Some questions to ask. But not much. Some things to get said. But not much.

We exchange words which give structure and form to our meeting. But soon they become mere formalities. At some point I notice I'm talking just to make conversation, and I say so. Behind the words are the emerging fullnesses. Implicit in the fullnesses is silent deep being. And it wants to come out into play. And I want it to come out into play.

The silence speaks, calling, wanting to be available. I've gotten to the end of what I want to ask, of what I came here to say. Yet though now wordless the conversation isn't over and I don't want it to end. We've gotten to the end of what there was to say, yet this silent exchange is really the conversation I want to have with you. In wordlessness we've reached the best part.

It's your silence that gets me. So powerful, more powerful than with any other person I know. So profound. It's really amazing how much certainty  there can be around something so rare that there's no comparative standard, no yardstick, no measurement for it. How is it something so unique, something so infrequently seen is so instantly recognizable, so immediately known?

But the way we're structured, the way it works  doesn't allow this to remain uninterrupted for too long. I'm clear about it. The being  in the conversation is who we love. Indeed, it's from whence  we love. And while these moments are precious treasures, life dictates they will give way to conversation. To honor these moments is to remember who's their source, to be empowered by them, then to bring their source to bear on all subsequent situations and circumstances in life.

It's funny. For the past few months I've been thinking about what to say when I see you again. Now that I'm here, the real gift, the totally unexpected privilege is the opportunity to simply sit saying nothing, once everything to be said has been said. But there's also an edge, a gritty discomfort to it. At first I'm uncertain what the cause of it is. Then I get it.

I want what you say to be widely available. By sitting here too long after the words have ended, I'm taking up time. There's an edge to giving up this great moment. Yet I'm also looking forward to taking this experience of real OK silence out into the world.

I stand to leave. Empowered. Serene. Wordless. Complete.

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