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

Some Good Light

Connolly Ranch, Browns Valley, California, USA

April 11, 2019

"That's some good light you've got coming out of your face Lar." ... 


I'm visiting with Werner. We sit opposite each other face to face, sipping piping-hot green tea. He gazes intently at me.

Then he says "That's some good light  you've got coming out of your face Lar" ("Lar" is his term of endearment for me, from the Roman god of the house).

It's a moment. I make a mental note to source an essay from it sometime.

That time is now.

It's not just her words that grab my attention, as decisive as words always are (who we are after all, is our language, or at least who we are, realized or not, is known in the world through our speaking). And it's not just what she speaks about ie it's not just what she languages, as revealing as that always is about who we're being. What it is, is the look she has on her face. Oh my God: that look!  She has a certain look on her face which is the kind of look no one can fake or pretend. It's the kind of look impostors will never be seen with. It's the look of being. It's the look which gives being as clear a vantage point (and makes it as easily discernible) as the nose on your face. It's unmistakably visible ... unmistakably visible, that is if you recognize what it is you're looking at and seeing.

And what it is about this look of hers, is that she's got some good light coming out of her face. That's the best way I can describe it for you: she's got some good light coming out of her face (quote unquote). Look: colloquially, you're not likely to hear many people say that - or even anything like it. Never mind. It works.

I say to her "That's some good light you've got coming out of your face, Girl!". She smiles in recognition. Yet it's a surprised recognition which tells me that light or no light, it's not what she's focused on. It's not something she aspires to emit or sets out to highlight with cosmetics and make-up. No, it's simply there  ie it simply shows, given who (and how) she's being. And I realize that what it is, is a rare emanation coming from total authenticity. It's what it looks like when someone is being bone-numbingly authentic. She speaks what she speaks (whatever that may be) and it says who she's being. And this good light coming out of her face complements it. Actually it's more than just complements it: it's that the good light is collateral proof of her authenticity ie it's its evidence. But it isn't the main point to (nor the focus of) her presentation. It's just that this is the look she gets on her face when she be's this way. It's the look that goes with the territory  of being authentic.

Explaining it (even attempting to) will just ruin it. So it's really only my "maybe" ie it's only my assumption that this kind of light is a predictable characteristic born of authentic being. It's only my guess. Perhaps it's characteristic of someone who's comfortable with being, and with being who they are. Perhaps it's characteristic of someone who's so comfortable with being and so comfortable with being who they are, that it's sometimes said of them that they're totally comfortable in their own skin. Maybe it's true. But with all that being said, I'm really not so sure. There's a very real possibility that who we really  are is out-here  not in here (if you will) at all. So the very notion of being comfortable "in one's own skin" is up for grabs at best. In this context however, I'm OK with deploying it ie it's good enough for jazz.

When I see a person like her emitting this kind of light (and it's not all that often that I see it) I can tell the light coming out of their face isn't the light of ego. How so? How do I know? How can anyone tell? By discovering this phenomenon for yourself. If I stand by ... my ... Self  ... looking in a mirror, I can differentiate between light coming from being, and light coming from my ego ie from my arrogance. Hers isn't the light of ego, the light of arrogance. With her, it's the light of being. And with that, it's also a light of radiant health, a light of being present, a light of being accessible, a light of being vulnerable, a light of being loving, lovable, and kind.

I don't see light coming out of people's faces daily. But I see it coming out of hers. When I do, even without a lot of prior exposure to and experience in recognizing it, I know exactly  what it is I'm seeing. I know what it is I'm seeing because my own light of being, recognizes itself in another ie in her. That's how I know it. And there's nothing to do with it or about it except to notice it, and possibly acknowledge to the person that you notice it, and to enjoy the moment with them and it.

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© Laurence Platt - 2019 Permission