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


Private Movie

Rubicon Estate, Rutherford, California, USA

November 12, 2009



This essay, Private Movie, is the companion piece to
  1. Already Always Listening
  2. Projector
in that order.

I am indebted to Michael McCue and to Nancy Froio who inspired this conversation.




Can you look from the possibility, that is to say are you willing  to look from the possibility, that anything you think you know or assume is going on with another person - their attitudes, their feelings, their raison d'etre, their strategies etc - is really nothing more than your own personal assessment of that person which may not even be real, which may be nothing more than just your own subjective evaluation of what's going on with that person, which may have little bearing at all on what's really  going on with that person?

Film reel courtesy equinoxgraphics.net
Rather than reflecting reality, your own subjective evaluation of what's going on with another person is really nothing more than your own private movie  about that person which captivates and enthralls you as you watch it, yet doesn't reflect reality as much as it's loosely based  on reality - it has at best a tenuous, dubious correlation with reality.

This is really simple. It's not rocket science. People are who they say  they are. They're not who you think  they are. Really!

Believing your own thoughts about, buying into your own assumptions about, agreeing with your own assessments of, accepting your own evaluations of what's going on with another person without confirmation in conversations with that person  is like watching your own private showing of a movie about that person, except you don't distinguish you're watching a movie. You've got it that your private movie is reality. You've got it that your private movie about that person is "the truth"  about that person. You've got it that your thoughts, assumptions, assessments, evaluations of what's going on with that person really are  what's going on with that person.

That's the idea I'd like to entertain for this conversation. The value you'll get from it (the value you'll get from any idea, actually) doesn't come from whether you believe it or not, nor from whether you agree with it or not. Even if you do believe it, even if you do agree with it, there's at best only marginal value to be derived from believing an idea or from agreeing with it. Rather, any real value and power an idea may have is unleashed by standing in it like a question, like a possibility, and noticing what opens up.

Your thoughts, assumptions, assessments, evaluations of what's going on with another person are true  when, in conversations with that person, they confirm they're true. Without confirmation in conversations with the other person they're true, you're only watching your own private movie of what's going on with that person. That's just you and your already always listening  chatting. When you and your already always listening chat, those conversations aren't based in reality, and are therefore never authentic Conversations For Transformation. Your already always listening is no source, no place to go to  to determine what's going on with another person.

Could it be relationships fail in large part because people go to  their private movie, to their already always listening as a source to determine what's going on with the other person, rather than starting Conversations For Transformation with them to determine what's going on with them - personally, intimately, directly, face to face?



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