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




This

John F Kennedy Park, Napa Valley, California, USA

July 6, 2018



"The transformation ratio: 'in here' is to 'that', as 'out-here' is to 'this'." ... Laurence Platt

This essay, This, is the companion piece to The Showing.




Maybe (just maybe) the start of any and all of our transformations (which is to say maybe what's required for any and all of our transformations to begin) is a shift in our relationship with whatever it is that's in front of us, with whatever it is thet we're dealing with, with whatever occurs for us out there  on which we're compelled to take action, from relating to it (whatever it is) as that, to relating to it as this. Maybe that's all it takes. Maybe. Transformations are after all (as is often noted) linguistic acts  ie they're intentional acts of speech.

"Oh, that's just semantics  Laurence" I can already hear the peanut gallery clamoring. Listen: it's all  semantics. All of it. Well, actually no: there is  one thing more than just semantics. To rephrase (quoting Werner), "There are only two things in the world: nothing, and semantics.". So it's not all just semantics: it's all either nothing, or it's semantics.

Transformations, as we said earlier, are speech acts ie they're linguistic in nature. Shifting our relationship with all of it, from relating to all of it it as "that", to relating to all of it as "this", is not only transformational (not to mention profoundly moving): it's also very good Zen. And in case you're wondering exactly what the difference between the two linguistic abstacts "that" and "this" is, here's a sure-fire way of discovering it for yourself: try each of them on for size. What it takes to (quote unquote) try on a linguistic abstract for size, is this: speak it, then stand four-square in the resulting experience, and notice what's there ie notice what comes up.

What I notice when I relate to all of it as "that" is: I'm in here  (so to speak) and all of it is out there where I'm not. And what I notice when I relate to all of it as "this" is: to relate to all of it as "this", I first have to get myself out-here, where all of it is (or we could say I first have to get myself out-here where I am all of it  - but that's another conversation for another occasion).

Shifting our relationship with all of it to "this" rather than "that" through an act of speech, secondarily alters where we stand in relation to all of it. Primarily it transforms our relationship with all of it. And it's even more than that actually.

[... being continued ...]



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