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


WE Not Me

Solano Avenue, Napa, California, USA

May 22, 2014



"While no one wants to be the first to say it, who each of us is and the fundamental choices each of us makes in life, seem to matter very little. Even acts of great courage and intelligence, while admirable and even inspiring, exist in sharp contrast to the apparent unworkability of the world at large. Our greatest technical achievement, walking on the moon, while galvanizing the world for a moment, did not fundamentally alter people's experience of their ability to make a difference in their lives and in the world. Sometime around now - it may have happened five years ago or fifty years ago, but sometime around now  - the rules for living successfully on Earth shifted, and an opportunity, unseen before, began to reveal itself. This opportunity is a context - a particular space or paradigm, a way of being - which unexpectedly creates the possibility for a person's life to truly make a difference. In this context, the way each of us answers the question 'What is my life really going to be about?'  can literally alter the course of humanity. The possibility to create the context in which people's lives really matter is undoubtedly the most profound opportunity available to anyone, ever."
 ... 
This essay, WE Not Me, is the companion piece to The We Decade: This Revisionsist's View Of History.



Any one of our individual experiences of transformation is both personal and it isn't. My own experience of transformation recontextualizes  (I love  that word) my entire life - which is to say it recontextualizes all the circumstances of my life. In this way it's personal, the circumstances of my life being mostly unique to my life, yes? But transformation like a phenomenon, like a possibility  is neither personal nor unique to any one particular individual.

A most awesome and startling facet of the first time experience of transformation is the obviousness that you can't get transformed because in order to get transformed you'd have to be not transformed, and if you're not transformed you can never be transformed because transformation doesn't have a beginning, middle, or end. Transformation doesn't live in that order of things. Rather, it's what gives context  to all that which has a beginning and a middle and an end. You start to see other people already imbued with transformation. You start to see other people already imbued with the possibility of being transformed, indeed with the possibility of already  being transformed, regardless of whether they speak transformation or not.

<aside>

Be careful.

Instead of saying "... whether they speak transformation or not", you may want to say "... whether they speak about  transformation or not.".

This isn't that.

"Speaking transformation" is an entirely different world than "speaking about  transformation".

<un-aside>

One expanding concentric circle surrounding each of us as individuals, includes each of us as group  ie it includes each of us in the groups to which we belong, the groups in which we participate: family, peers, neighborhoods, religions, schools, societies, countries etc. Individual transformation can be slow to realize, given our stuckness in individual patterns of survival (individual survival being a self-imposed barrier, be it unconscious or conscious, to individual transformation). So is it with groups. Group transformation can also be slow to realize, given our stuckness in patterns of survival as groups (group survival being a self-imposed barrier, be it unconscious or conscious, to group transformation).

It's in our self-imposed survival as groups that the most violent threats to the future of our world show up. Whether it's cultural groups disparaging, denigrating, and threatening other cultural groups, whether it's religious groups disparaging, denigrating, and threatening other religious groups, whether it's racial groups disparaging, denigrating, and threatening other racial groups, whether it's national groups disparaging, denigrating, and threatening other national groups, survival at the level of group  (if you will) is the single biggest barrier to the success of the experiment called life on Planet Earth.

Yet inescapably, we are  a group. We're humanity, yes?

Without personal transformation, survival at the level of individual fosters survival at the level of group. That's a predictable fact. It's simply the outcome of the machinery. With personal transformation, there's an entirely new possibility for individuals, and as a consequence of this new possibility for individuals, there's also an entirely new possibility for groups. Since in its very nature it isn't wholly personal, transformation grants access to the group-less group  (if you will) ie to humanity and to the transformation of humanity. An entirely new possibility for the success of the experiment called life on Planet Earth emerges.

No matter how delightfully, no matter how powerfully it may shift my personal life, transformation is never really about me. Transformation, even that which I may think of as my personal transformation, is really about WE. That's its true nature. To consider transformation as only personal, to not be clear about the full implication and possibility of transformation as an eternal impersonal phenomenon applicable to humanity as a whole, epitomizes what it is to be unclear on the concept.
WE not me.



Communication Promise E-Mail | Home

© Laurence Platt - 2014 through 2016 Permission