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




Super Powers

Mumm Cuvée, Rutherford, California, USA

February 28, 2020

"If God had meant man to fly, he would have given him wings."  ... 


At least in our folk lore, mythology, and cartoonography, human beings are capable of exercising so-called super powers. Their entrenched place in our culture reflects perhaps our deepest wishful thinking. They're analogous to what we yearn for in order to transcend and to triumph over life's threats, cross-currents, and challenges.

We're not just talking about super powers of the walking on water ilk, analogous perhaps to our yearning to be light on our feet ie to be (colloquially speaking) not heavy  and to float over adversity. It's in a similar vein to being (analogously) light, that there's the super power to fly (that Icarus famously took too far - which in itself could be an analogy for something else) and the super power to levitate, touted by the ancient yogis as de rigueur  and reported in the texts, yet never actually validated or corroborated by science (rather, what has been validated and corroborated, is fervently, energetically hopping with legs enpretzeled in the lotus  position).

The realm of cartoonography brings its own quota of super powers: the super power to see through lead (to see through anything  actually, for that matter) with X-ray vision (Superman), the super power to breathe underwater (Aquaman), the super power to leap huge distances in a single bound (the Incredible Hulk), not to mention an entirely new raft of super powers demonstrated more than admirably by the Fantastic Four, each of which also reflects and represents our innermost deepest desires to be free of and to triumph over that which limits and binds us to our seemingly mere corporeality.

In our imagination we wave magic wands and cast spells. Such super powers are more than generously promoted by authors and film-makers and boys named Harry. Sorcerers and wizards with super powers are the stuff of ancient and modern stories and legends (which means they may be true, and they may not be). All this, plus the stuff of cartoonography, lives in the realm of fantasy - which means we know it's not true, yet we live vicariously through it as if it is true or as if it could be  true.

And then there are those rare, actual, demonstrable super powers: the super power to recall complex sequences of numbers in extraordinarily minute detail, by genius savants  epitomized by Rain Man, the super power to endure frigid temperatures ie to control body heat and heart rate. Oh, and thespians would include expert acting  as a super power: it's the super power to literally become someone else, which the science fiction genre also advances, calling it the super power of shape-shifting.

Look: in the end, the truth is there's only one super power which really is real, is not a fantasy, and is available to everyone. And it's more than it's merely available. It's that it's worth aspiring to, practicing, and owning. Indeed it's the only super power that's always been available to each and every human being who's ever walked the face of this Earth, and it's always been available to everyone equally, realized or not, for which neither folk lore, mythology, cartoonography, imagination, magic, nor drama are required. It's the super power available to each and every human being to generate on demand (ie at will) being fully present and completely engaged in any situation. It's the super power to bring who we really are forward and to presence it fully and completely, regardless of and no matter what the circumstances.

It's this one super power that stands out, towering over and beyond all others, this extraordinary super power to which every human being has access: to bring forth and to presence the being of human being, for which neither folk lore nor mythology nor cartoonography are required. It's this super power that has the ability to turn an ordinary life and living, into something truly extraordinary, to transform living the drab mundane into a fiercely remarkable adventure. This  is our true super power.



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