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 The Action Is

Cowboy Cottage, East Napa, California, USA

October 24, 2017

"My mother was of the sky, my father was of the earth, but I am of the universe." ... The Beatles, Yer Blues

This essay, Where The Action Is, is the tenth in a group of fourteen written Out-Here:
  1. Out Here
  2. Out Here II: Out-Here
  3. Out-Here III
  4. Transforming Life Itself: A Completely Started Inquiry
  5. Being And Acting Out-Here: Presence Of Self Revisited
  6. Hiking In A Painting
  7. Out-Here IV: Clearing For Life
  8. Something Bigger Than Oneself II
  9. To A Fault
  10. Where The Action Is
  11. Step Outside Your Head: A Call To Action
  12. More Than Being With The World
  13. It's Never Over There
  14. Life Is What's Happening
in that order.

It is also the ninth in a group of nine on Passion: It is also the sequel to Still Standing Still.

It was written at the same time as More Than Half Of What I Own.

I am indebted to Josh Cohen and to Sally Morrison who contributed material for this conversation.

She's one of my favorite people. I mean she's one of my all time  favorite people. No kidding! Given the opportunity (ie given the chance and given her invitation)  I'd rather be with her than with almost anyone else I can think of on the planet. She's my friend. She's my confidante. She's my coach (at least in certain areas of my life) and I'm hers (at least in certain areas of her life). She's a hero of mine. She's a muse.

She's someone who revels in being authentic for the sake of being authentic. After we say goodnight and I'm driving home, I often don't remember exactly what we spoke about - oddly the details don't seem to be crucial. Yet I find myself swimming  in an experience of having opened it all up, of having been completely known, of having let it all out, of having let it all down, of having been totally loved and appreciated. I know nothing like it. I know no one like her. And when I consider which people I get to be with this way, it's everyone like a possibility  (that's an "Of course!") but it's her and only a handful of others like her in reality (that's the truth).

There's an area we revisit again and again in our conversations. It's an area I flesh out for her. It's the same area she compliments and completes for me. The area I'm referring to is the area grappled with in the question "Where  are you located as a human being?". It's a question which for me provides a key to how people regard what's possible  for human beings. But it's more than that actually: it's a question which provides a key to how people regard themselves  as human beings. And if you've ever been around Werner, it's a question which has been coming up a lot around him lately, the answers to which are almost never what people volunteer (ie are almost never what people come up with) initially  - which is not atypical of almost all of the inquiries people grapple with around Werner, by the way.

There's a certain distinction which for me goes naturally with this particular question. It's a razor's edge  distinction. It's a scalpel precisely wielded along the thin line between the way we ordinarily  live life, and living life transformed. I'm not suggesting she represents one side of that line, and I the other. That's too confining - not to mention it's too caricaturing. Each of us at different times (when we tell the truth about it) occur for ourselves and for each other on either side of that line. What I love about her is I can be both with her from time to time, and she can be both with me from time to time. Authentic love, it would seem, has a lot less to do with having the same interests as each other (regardless of what they are) as it has to do with having the same acceptings  of each other (regardless of who we're being).

Getting back to the two sides of that line: it requires a certain inspiration (or if I'm by myself, a certain enlightened point of view) to see that how I occur for myself in here  (as a mash-up  of bodily sensations, emotions / feelings, thoughts / memories, and attitude / state of mind) isn't who I really am, regardless of the fact that I've lived most of my life as if it is. It's her inspiration that has me be out-here  where the action is, as the context  for it all in which Life itself can show up - and more than that, has me commit to being out-here as my natural Self-expression (without this ongoing commitment I'm sprung like a rubber-band to re-interiorize myself again and again and again over and over and over).

And as for the way I've occurred for myself in here, around her I can't be that way anymore - not only because it's no longer who I am for myself, but because she's  all out-here, and if I'm going to play (that is if we're  going to play) I have to get out-here with her where the action is. When she presents me with clear evidence (by demonstrating it)  that who we really are is out-here, I happily shed all the resistance I ever had to coming out to play, rubber-banded interiorization notwithstanding.

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