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


Where Else Would You Store Them?

Cakebread Cellars, Rutherford Appellation, Napa Valley, California, USA

April 25, 2013



"To make sure a person doesn't find out who he is, convince him that he can't really make anything disappear."  ... 
This essay, Where Else Would You Store Them?, was written at the same time as I am indebted to Charlene Afremow who contributed material for this conversation.



Where do you store broken promises?

That's right: where do you store  broken promises? - that's store  as in keep, place, put, sock away, stash, stow, etc. By broken promises I'm referring to both yours and others'. Also, where do you store integrity violations? By integrity violations I'm also referring to both yours and others'.

This isn't merely semantics. Both broken promises and integrity violations are constituted in language ie in words. Where is language stored? - especially language which constitutes broken promises, especially language which constitutes integrity violations. Where are words stored? - especially words which constitute broken promises, especially words which constitute integrity violations.

When broken promises and integrity violations are cleaned up, they disappear  ie they're no longer stored anywhere. But let's suppose (for the sake of this conversation) they're not  cleaned up - or haven't yet  been cleaned up. Then where are they stored? Then where do you store broken promises? Then where do you store integrity violations?

Recently I was a party in the simple matter of a broken promise and an integrity violation being cleaned up. To be clear, it was another's broken promise (not mine) and integrity violation. But they both involved me - which is to say they were tantamount to mine as well, especially with regard to their impact on my life. What I intend to share is what I noticed during this incident and the value I derived from what I noticed.

An energy level in my body which had been diminished for eight years (the duration of the broken promise and the integrity violation), suddenly sprang to life again. It had been diminished for so long that

 a)  I'd long forgotten what the un-diminished form of this energy felt like, and
 b)  it had been diminished this way for so long that the ongoing diminished form of this energy now felt like normal to me.

So when the un-diminished energy suddenly sprang to life again, I was taken by surprise - pleasantly so. That's when I realized although I didn't have my attention on it, the broken promise and the integrity violation had taken a toll on my energy and well being even at a subtle level, for eight years. In other words I realized by contrast  how much the broken promise and integrity violation had cost me, once this energy level sprang to life again.

It was such an obvious, wonderful, freeing  discovery that I remarked to a friend of mine animatedly "I just realized I store broken promises and integrity violations, mine and others', in my body"  (this discovery was a big deal  for me). And she asked dryly "Well ... where else  would you store them?".

* * *

It's not often I'm truly struck dumb. This was one such occasion. I was silent for a few seconds until the "A-Ha!"  had fully hit. I store broken promises and integrity violations, mine and others', in my body. I got  it. Well ... where else  would I store them? Of course.

The ramifications are awesome if not aw-ful  (I use both adjectives in their true context: awe). Both broken promises and integrity violations, both mine and others' with whom I'm involved, result in diminished energy ... and that's only for starters. Both broken promises and integrity violations result in restless sleep. Both broken promises and integrity violations result in poor posture. Both broken promises and integrity violations result in any and all manner of body blockages. And diminished energy, restless sleep, poor posture, and any and all manner of body blockages result in many physical impediments to life working, yes?

I assert we store the language and words which constitute broken promises and integrity violations, in our bodies. There, hidden from us, behind the scenes (so to speak), they wreak havoc upon our lives. The language and words which constitute broken promises and integrity violations aren't stored somewhere vague, somewhere esoteric. They're not stored out there  anywhere. They're not stored in the so-called cloud  (computer geeks take note). But we do store them - of that there's no doubt. And where we store them is in our bodies, knowingly or unknowingly - mostly unknowingly.

That's bad news. Really.

The good news is broken promises and integrity violations, when cleaned up, disappear. And when they disappear, it's not surprising energy, which was muted and diminished by them, is freed up. What this is, is the re-presencing  of who we really are, no longer constrained and hidden behind barriers built from the language and words which constitute broken promises and integrity violations, stored in our bodies.

Listen: it's a unique and special ability we human beings each have: the ability to make things disappear. It could even be said the ability we each have to make things disappear, is what distinguishes  us as human beings. Said another way, "To make sure a person doesn't find out who he is, convince him that he can't really make anything disappear" (to quote Werner Erhard).



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