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


September 11, 2001 - Five Years After

Sacramento, California, USA

September 11, 2006



This essay, September 11, 2001 - Five Years After, is the third in the quadrilogy September 11, 2001:
  1. September 11, 2001
  2. September 11, 2001 - One Year After
  3. September 11, 2001 - Five Years After
  4. September 11, 2001 - Ten Years After
in that order.

It is the companion piece to
  1. What Happened As Distinct From The Story About What Happened
  2. Road Warrior
in that order.




Five years ago on September 11, 2001, something happened.

In this, the latest of the Conversations For Transformation, we're not going to vote on it again. We already did. We tried voting as a way of getting it handled and it hasn't worked.

With events of this magnitude and impact, we take sides. When I say "we" I mean it quite literally. I mean all of us on the planet. I'm not going to ask you whose side you're on. I'm asking you for something bigger than that. I'm asking you to simply notice  we take sides. I'm asking you to notice in events where there's a real or imaginary threat to our survival, we react by automatically. You may notice you're right  to take the side you take. You may also notice how with such events we have it that God is on our side.

Sound familiar?

We're reactivated by the events of September 11, 2001. I assert this sort of thing has gone on since neanderthal man first picked up a stick. It's likely to continue. Why? Our abilities and technologies keep developing. We'll make better sticks in future.

We won't fix what happened coming from reactivation. Our sense of Self, of who we are, of who we all  are, is sidelined by our survival instincts and their ensuing reactivation. Without the sense of Self, things go nowhere fast. When there's no sense of Self, when there's no transformation, nothing really works. And what's already not working goes nowhere even faster.

Bottom line:

1)  We're reactivated in the extreme. This reactivation eclipses our sense of Self. When there's no sense of Self, then there's no sense of a future worth living into. When there's no sense of a future worth living into. the rat no longer seeks cheese down the tunnels. It simply lays down in front of them and dies without attempting a choice;

2)  Our extreme reactivation eclipsing our sense of Self invalidates what's possible. Without inventing new possibilities grounded in a sense of Self, we'll never solve the issues of September 11, 2001. At best, we'll extend them.

If anything valuable is going to come from what happened, it will come when we take the time to notice who we really are ie who we all  really are, as distinct from our base instincts of survival and domination. That's a foundation on which new possibilities for the future for everyone can be set in place. In its absence, all we'll have are our differences, our opinions, our assessments, our interpretations, our righteousnesses, and our interests, all justified by false identity and separation.

Isn't that why neanderthal man picked up a stick in the first place?



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