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


Pedal To The Metal

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

April 11, 2011



This essay, Pedal To The Metal, was written at the same time as

Full tilt. Full on. Full out. Flat out. Out there. Pedal to the metal.

I'm speaking about a way of living, a calling  actually. Who lives this way? Who's called  to live this way? Who works  this way? You're standing up (figuratively if not literally) if you live this way and if you work this way. It's been said if you work this way, you're a workaholic. I don't have any idea what that means. What exactly  is a workaholic? I don't know. I don't work any more. I stopped working a long  time ago so I'm not qualified to say. I only play. I play all the time. There's no difference between work and play. If there's a difference, it's arbitrary at best. The question is apropos:  do you live this way? Do you work this way? Do you play this way? Stand up if you do.

So you also don't work any more? And you also play all the time? It could be said if you play this way, you're a play-aholic. Is being a playaholic a good  thing or a bad  thing? Setting whether good  and bad  are weak distinctions aside, I don't have much charge either way with playaholics. What exactly is a workaholic? What exactly  is a playaholic? Someone who works hard? Someone who plays  hard?

Well ... how cool  is that?  There's nothing wrong with working hard. There's nothing wrong with playing hard. Yet there's something else implied by the moniker "workaholic", something else implied by the moniker "playaholic", something else to consider here ...

If I were to express an opinion about an anything-aholic, how hard he or she works and how hard he or she plays wouldn't have much to do with it. What I'm interested in is this: what's the context  in which he or she lives? What's the self-generated context  in which he or she works and plays? That's  what I want to know about. That's what I'm interested in. Because without  a self-generated context of Self, living pedal to the metal passes Life by - just as without a self-generated context of Self, working and playing pedal to the metal passes Life by ... and within  a self-generated context of Self, living, working, and playing pedal to the metal brings Life forth and inspires.

I'm also interested in this: is living pedal to the metal something you have  to do? Is working pedal to the metal something you have  to do? Is playing pedal to the metal something you have  to do? Or is it something you choose  to do? This question can't be answered truthfully superficially. It can only be answered truthfully unflinchingly. It can only be answered truthfully if you go deeper than the right  answer, deeper than the answer which makes you look good, and really tell the truth about what's so for you. When it's something you have  to do, it's bound up in your survival. It's bound up in your uncreative automaticity. You may get a lot of living done (we notice that), you may get a lot of work done (we admire that), you may get a lot of playing done (we envy that) but at what cost?  At what cost to your relationships? At what cost to your aliveness? At what cost to your integrity?  At what cost to your sense of fulfillment and completion?

When you're living and working and playing pedal to the metal within a self-generated context of Self and  it's what you choose to do rather than what you have to do, then My Friend I say you're really on to something.



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