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


What You Create For Yourself About Me

Trefethen Family Vineyards, Oak Knoll Appellation, Napa Valley, California, USA

May 20, 2013



This essay, What You Create For Yourself About Me, is the third in the seventh trilogy Questions For A Friend:
  1. Beyond Breathing Underwater
  2. Bold Faced Truth
  3. What You Create For Yourself About Me
in that order.
The first trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Prelude
  2. Ask Me Anything
  3. Coming Around Again
in that order.
The second trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Familiar Unfamiliar Territory
  2. Interview
  3. Straight Talk
in that order.
The third trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Dancing With My Mouth
  2. Cave Paintings
  3. Velvet Tsunami
in that order.
The fourth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Creating Creating
  2. Tell Me Something About Nothing
  3. Lucid Disclosures
in that order.
The fifth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Closer And Closer
  2. Tête À Tête
  3. Dancing With Life
in that order.
The sixth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. What Would I Ask You If I Could Ask You Anything?
  2. Wonderings About Nothing In Particular
  3. Tipping Point
in that order.
The eighth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Once In A Lifetime
  2. Fireside Chat
  3. Whole And Complete
in that order.
The ninth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Questions For A Friend
  2. Nothing Else I'd Rather Be Doing
  3. Free To Be And Free To Act
in that order.
The tenth trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Attracted To Dance
  2. I Told A Friend I Love You
  3. Terse Transformed Communication
in that order.
The eleventh trilogy Questions For A Friend is:
  1. Questions For A Friend XI I (working title)
  2. Questions For A Friend XI II (working title)
  3. Questions For A Friend XI III (working title)
in that order.

It is also the twelfth in a group of fourteen on Creating:

My intention in this sharing is to be invisible. It's to be transparent. No, it's more than that actually. It's to also be expendable and interchangeable.

Here's what I mean by that:

What this sharing is, is an intimate conversation between two human beings, between two friends really, the other one of whom happens to be me. And I invite you to take on being in this intimate conversation between two human beings, between two friends as if I, the other one, expendable and interchangeable as I am, have been swapped out  so now the other one just happens to be you.

Use your own imagination (which is to say use your own creativity)  to make up a suitable backdrop for this conversation ie to make up an appropriate setting  for this conversation. For example, you (ie the two  of you) could be walking barefoot along the water's edge of a gorgeous, deserted, secluded beach under an orange and gold flaming sky'd sunset skipping stones and talking with each other in that unpressured relaxed way people get to talk with each other when they're walking barefoot along the water's edge of a gorgeous, deserted, secluded beach under an orange and gold flaming sky'd sunset skipping stones.

Or the two of you could be in the wings of a massive stadium packed with, oh ... ninety  ... five  ... thousand  ... eagerly anticipating people as the lights go down and a single laser spotlight pierces the darkness brilliantly illuminating two canvas director's chairs on a simple raised podium as a hidden announcer says over the public address system "Ladies and Gentlemen: Wern..."  and the rest of the announcement is instantly  drowned out, annihilated, washed away  by the sudden surge of the rising deafening ear-splitting roar  of that huge crowd, now all on their feet, every last one of them.



The First Question



"Everyone wants to know what you'll be doing next. Have you chosen a future in which academia and business will continue to frame all subsequent iterations of your work? Or have you already set your sights on new, heretofore undiscovered trails to blaze through unmapped territory and uncharted waters? What's next for you?"

What's next for you? It's not a trivial question. To be sure, it's prompted by my interest in what you'll be doing next. But it's also prompted by my interest in what I'll  be doing next. History has proved whatever you do next will soon make its presence and inspiration felt over here. When that fish crawled up on the land for the first time giving rise to elephants and eagles like a possibility, it wasn't long before these elephants and eagles all began to invent and live into possibilities of their own.


<quote>

COMPLETE THE BOOK ON INTEGRITY FOR CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS. THEN COMPLETE A PAPER THAT I CALL THE MASTERY TALK THAT WILL ULTIMATELY BECOME A BOOK FOR GENERAL READERSHIP. THEN COMPLETE THE PAPER "A NEW PARADIGM OF PERFORMANCE". DURING WHICH I WILL COMPLETE THE LEADERSHIP COURSE. WRITE AN ARTICLE FOR IN-HOUSE CONSULTING COMPANY'S MAGAZINE. AND, TO SUPPORT MYSELF, MY DAY JOB IS CONSULTING WITH VARIOUS CLIENTS WHO MAKE A REQUEST, AND WHEN I HAVE TIME RESPOND TO REQUESTS FOR INTERVIEWS.

<unquote>


While there's nothing to compare with you interacting personally face to face with people teasing out the distinctions of transformation, none of us will be around forever. So I want to thank you for writing books and papers, and for whatever else you're doing (scripting courseware for example), which makes available what you got for others to get without you. It assures to some degree or another, your anticipated (in this welcomed sense) immortality.

With regard to you saying you'll complete  The Leadership Course: it requires total focus and commitment just to contemplate  the full extent and impact of The Leadership Course. It requires an even greater commitment to arrange life to be able to actually participate in it. In the face of all it takes, it's easy to overlook (or not notice) the point you've gotten to where you say you'll now complete  The Leadership Course - that's "complete The Leadership Course" as in "finish its creation", not "complete The Leadership Course" as in "participate in it". Your stated intention to "complete The Leadership Course" is so far out in front of the curve that it's become the very epitome of leadership itself.

As for "supporting yourself" with a "day job", the authentic humility with which you say this, is palpable, tangible. It's both disarming as well as completely refreshing. "Complete The Leadership Course"? That's big, heroic. "Support yourself" with a "day job"? That's down home, boy next door, apple pie, heartland. I love this about you.

Please accept my profoundest appreciation for agreeing to my request for this interview.



The Second Question



"In examining my friendship with you, I notice there's a fine line between affinity and attachment. I can't separate the two. I share an affinity with you / I love you - therefore the truth is, to a great extent, I'm attached to you. My love and attachment occur together. Is this simply the 'good' attachment which occurs naturally with affinity / love, and which should simply be let be? Or does it get in the way?"

It's not that when I love, then I'm free. It's the other way around. It's when I'm free, then I love. Love is the occurring condition of ie love is the evidence  of being free. What seems to follow, sooner or later, closely on the heels of "when I'm free, I love" is "when I love, I want" and "when I love, I need" and "when I love (given the former two), I attach". The trouble with this, of course, is when I'm attached to or need or want whom I love, I not only get in the way of love itself, but (in spite of myself) I also create by my own attachment, a condition around myself in which those I love aren't free.


<quote>

ABOUT "I share an affinity with you / I love you - therefore the truth is, to a great extent, I'm attached to you.", THE WORD "THEREFORE" MAY BE A BIT MISLEADING. ONE COULD ALSO SAY, "I share an affinity with you / I love you - therefore AND the truth is, to a great extent, I'm attached to you." THERE IS SOME VALUE IN CONSIDERING THE POSSIBILITY OF EACH OF THESE STATEMENTS. FOR EXAMPLE, I COULD SAY I AM COMPLETE WITHIN MYSELF, AND I CHOOSE TO RELATE TO YOU - AND IN THAT RELATIONSHIP I AM MOVED, TOUCHED, AND INSPIRED. NO ATTACHMENT THERE.

<unquote>


One of the first distinctions you ever brought to my attention and walked me through is "but" as distinct from simply "and". The freedom from the trap of causality  this distinction brings, is truly astounding.

To wit, "I want a Mercedes Benz but  I don't have the money" is a problem. "I want a Mercedes Benz and  I don't have the money" isn't a problem.

You've now revealed another similarly powerful distinction which also brings freedom from the trap of causality: "therefore"  as distinct from simply "and". Applying this distinction here leveraging my freedom, allowing love to be without attachment in just five sentences, is truly masterful - genius even.



The Third Question



"With every other relationship in my life - with my children, with my family, with my friends, with humanity at large - I can distinguish the 'I love you', and I can distinguish reasons for the 'I love you'. With you there are no reasons. With you there's just 'I love you'. With you this 'I love you' without reasons, empowers every other 'I love you' in my life. What is this about you? Why does loving you empower all the other relationships in my life?"

Yes it's a "Why?"  question - and in particular it's a "Why?" question about love, and in particular it's a "Why?" question about why love works the way it works.

Dumb! That's three strikes  right there for the booby prize ...

That said, this I know: whatever it is about you I love, I love about you.


<quote>

ABOUT "3) With every other relationship in my life - with my children, with my family, with my friends, with humanity at large - I can distinguish the 'I love you', and I can distinguish reasons for the 'I love you'. With you there are no reasons. With you there's just 'I love you'. With you this 'I love you' without reasons, empowers every other 'I love you' in my life. What is this about you? Why does loving you empower all the other relationships in my life?" WHAT IT IS ABOUT ME IS WHAT YOU CREATE FOR YOURSELF ABOUT ME - THAT'S ALL.

<unquote>


Thank you for always giving me back who I really am.



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