“Your power is a function of velocity, that is to say, your power is a function of the rate at which you translate intention into reality.”

~Werner Erhard

You and me world center earth

“Sometime around now – it may have happened five years ago or fifty years ago – but sometime around now the rules for living successfully on this planet shifted.

We can no longer hope to live meaningful, purposeful lives using the rules of a you or me world.  It’s becoming clearer and clearer to those who will look that in order to live successfully on this planet, we much discover and live by the rules of you and me.

-Werner Erhard

Sometimes you will give up your possessions, your children, your husband or wife, you will give up everything, except for the one thing that you need to give up in order to experience something that you want.  And what you need to give up in order to get that experience is the notion that you haven’t got that experience.

~ Werner Erhard

This is it. There are no hidden meanings.  Here is where it is.  Now is when it is.  You are what it is.

~Werner Erhard

What I have is a place to stand. Not the right place, for I do not pretend to know what is right even for myself, let alone others, but a place I am willing to try out to see if it leaves me as a clearing where the truth can more powerfully go to work.

~ Werner Erhard

Integrity is a Mountain with No Top - 6 day.jpg

“My experience of est was that it helped the participants to get more in touch with feelings and emotions and helped them let go of those that were negatively affecting their lives.  It led participants to realize experientially our true freedom and responsibility.  Strengthening and vitalizing the humanity of the participant, EST opened the space for a greater penetration of grace and more vigorous faith life”

~ Father Basil Pennington O.C.S.O.,  Monk of Cistercian Order, Roman Catholic Church, world renowned spiritual teacher and author of several books

perfect

My notion about service is that service is actually that kind of relationship in which you have a commitment to the person. Service is about knowing who the other person is, and being able to tolerate giving space to their garbage. What most people do is to give space to people’s quality and deal with their garbage.

Actually, you should do it the other way around. Deal with who they are and give space to their garbage.

Keep interacting with them as if they were perfect. And every time you get garbage from them, give space to the garbage and go back and interact with them as if they were prefect. ~ Werner Erhard

Werner Erhard and Gonneke Spits

Werner Erhard and Gonneke Spits, 2010

The Multiple Facets of Integrity in Business and Management, Rutledge, 2018. Chapter 2, “Integrity: A Positive Model that Incorporates the Normative Phenomena of Morality, Ethics and Legality (Abbreviated Version)” by Werner Erhard, Michael C. Jensen and Steve Zaffron.

Editors Marc Orlitzky and Manjit Monga write:

In Chapter 2, Erhard, Jensen, and Zaffron present an eminently well-argued, positive model of integrity, which clearly differentiates integrity from morality and ethics.  They argue that integrity, a necessary condition for the workability and optimum performance of organizations, exists in a positive realm and, therefore, can be the subject of social scientists’ descriptive, observational study of behavior.  Their definition of integrity as honoring your word is clearly differentiated from the normative realm of morality, ethics, and legality.  The authors show that defining integrity as honoring one’s word provides an unambiguous and actionable access to the opportunity for superior performance and competitive advantage at different levels of analysis and empowers the three virtue phenomena of morality, ethics, and legality.  This chapter is most consistent with the conceptualization as behavioral integrity, the first facet of integrity introduced above.

“The moment when you really experience that you have created yourself being whatever way you are, at that same moment you will never have to be that way again.”

-Werner Erhard

 

Werner Erhard

Behavior that lacks integrity leads to value destruction. This paper analyzes some common beliefs, actions, and activities in finance that are inconsistent with being a person or a firm of integrity. Each of these beliefs leads to a system that lacks integrity, i.e., one that is not whole and complete and therefore creates unworkability and destroys value. Focusing on these phenomena from the integrity viewpoint, the authors argue, makes it possible for managers to focus on the value that can be created by putting the system back in integrity and correcting the non-value maximizing equilibrium that exists in capital markets. Overall, this paper summarizes a purely positive theory of integrity that has no normative elements whatsoever, and demonstrates how it applies to both individuals and organizations. In effect, integrity is a factor of production just like knowledge, technology, labor, and capital, but it is undistinguished—and its affect (by its presence or absence) is huge. Key concepts include:

  • Integrity matters. Not because it is virtuous, but because it creates workability.
  • Workability increases the opportunity for performance, and maximum workability is necessary for realizing maximum value.
  • Integrity thus becomes a necessary (but not sufficient) condition for value maximization-a proposition that should become an important element in every finance course in every business school.

– The text above is as stated in Harvard Business School – Working Knowledge – The Thinking That Leads – about the working paper by Werner Erhard and Michael C. Jensen entitled, Putting Integrity into Finance: A Purely Positive Approach

Consider the following key findings unearthed in the survey of more than 1,200
finance professionals regarding workplace ethics by Tenbrunsel and Thomas (2015) entitled “The Street, The Bull and the Crisis: A survey of the US & UK financial Services Industry”. These findings quoted below provide striking indications that there has been little or no progress in reducing the out-of-integrity culture in the field of finance.

• our survey clearly shows that a culture of integrity has failed to take hold. Numerous
individuals continue to believe that engaging in illegal or unethical activity is
part and parcel of succeeding in this highly competitive field.

• 47% of respondents find it likely that their competitors have engaged in unethical
or illegal activity in order to gain an edge in the market . . . a spike from the 39% who
reported as such when surveyed in 2013. This figure jumps to 51% for individuals
earning more than $500,000 or more per year.

• More than one-third (34%) of those earning $500,000 or more annually have witnessed
or have first-hand knowledge of wrongdoing in the workplace.

• 23% of respondents believe it is likely that fellow employees have engaged in illegal
or unethical activity in order to gain an edge, nearly double the 12% that reported
as such in 2012.

• 25% would likely use non-public information to make a guaranteed $10 million
if there was no chance of getting arrested for insider trading. Employees with less
than 10 years experience are more than two times as likely as those with over 20 years
experience, reporting 32% and 14% respectively.

• In the UK 32% of individuals said they would likely engage in insider trading to
earn $10 million if there was no chance of getting arrested, compared to 24% of
respondents from the US.

• Nearly one in five respondents feel financial services professionals must at least
sometimes engage in illegal or unethical activity to be successful.

• 27% of those surveyed disagree that the financial services industry puts the best
interests of clients first. This figure rises to 38% for those earning $500,000 or more
per year.

• Nearly one-third of respondents (32%) believe compensation structures or bonus
plans in place at their company could incentivize employees to compromise ethics
or violate the law.

• 33% of financial service professionals feel the industry hasn’t changed for the better
since the financial crisis.

The continuing scandals are therefore strong evidence of the dismal failure of these
explanations to provide any effective access to reducing the counter-productive behavior.

These spectacular failures are, in fact, strong evidence that these explanations of the behavior are in fact false causes. While such false causes appear to provide a satisfying explanation for the behavior, note that they provide no effective access to altering the behavior. In fact, the almost universal assignment of false causes of the behavior that result in these damaging effects (exemplified by what we termed the “scandals”) (for examples see Appendix 1) actually obscures the real source of such behavior. We argue that the real source of this behavior is individuals or organizations being out of integrity (as we have said, their word not being whole, complete, unbroken, unimpaired, sound, in perfect condition). And it is one or more of the eleven factors making up the Veil of Invisibility (discussed fully in Section 3.h) that results in individuals and organizations not seeing the cost to themselves of their out-of-integrity behavior.

“Love is granting another the space to be the way they are and the way they are not”

-Werner ErhardGonneke Spits and Werner Erhard

Werner Erhard and Gonneke Spits.

 

WERNER ERHARD: “I’ve had the opportunity and the privilege to count some great men and women among my friends. They all have the same problem: they cannot get their students to be masters as they are—even students with all the intellectual equipment you can imagine. I tell them that the reason they can’t turn their students into masters is that they are fibbing to themselves about the source of their own mastery. They attribute their own mastery to everything other than its actual source: creation. Creating and Being exist in the same domain. And there is a discipline to Being, to creation. The domain of Being has its own rigor; Being is approachable, it is masterable; it’s not nebulous.

“Imagine someone who wants to be a great manager. In the normal course of events, such a man or woman would start off by, let’s say, studying management—perhaps in school, in books, or as an apprentice. Eventually, he or she would collect all the things that great managers have—degrees, credentials, diplomas, great track records, and great biographies. Then, at that point, we say, “Well, Mr. or Ms. X is a great manager!” Later, we send our children to the same schools so that they can become great managers too.

“Except, most of the children who go to those schools never do become great managers. And we explain that failure on the basis of genes, environment, intelligence, opportunity, and the like. It never occurs to us that our template for becoming a great manager, or, more accurately, for becoming a great anything, is backwards. Never do we consider that what makes a great manager is NOT the school, books, or education, but simply BEING a great manager.

“Now, I know that statement looks absurd at first, but it’s a very interesting possibility. If you discipline yourself to look for what’s present, for what is occurring in the moment, then you can ask yourself, “When someone is being a great manager, what is present?” What’s present (and all that is present, really) is being a great manager. What produces greatness, at the moment when greatness shows up, is being great, period. All the credentials follow from that, not the reverse.

“Most people to whom I talk think, “Hey, great! That means I don’t have to go to college!” That’s not what it means. All the learning, apprenticing, practicing, and thinking are still necessary. My point is not that those practices aren’t necessary; my point is that when greatness does show up, none of those practices is the source of it. They do provide the conditions for it, but none are the source of the greatness itself. The source is, very simply, Being great. The question we are concerned with in our work is, how does one master this domain of Being?

“So, I apologize for a very long answer to a very short question, but it hit right at the heart of our work—that of exploring, investigating, and making available what it means to be anything.”

An Interview with Werner Erhard, by Norman Bodek; ReVision: The Journal of Consciousness and Change, Vol 7, No. 2, Winter 1984 / Spring 1985

wepe22-by nick dewolf 1980

You and I want our lives to matter. We want our lives to make a real difference – to be of genuine consequence in the world. We know that there is no satisfaction in merely going through the motions, even if those motions make us successful or even if we have arranged to make those motions pleasant. We want to know we have had some impact on the world. In fact, you and I want to contribute to the quality of life. We want to make the world work.

When you look at making the world work, you are confronted by, and cannot pass over, the fact that each year 15 million of us die as a consequence of starvation. This unparalleled failure for humanity enables us to see that the world’s unworkability is located in the very condition in which we live our lives. Thus, it is not people “out there” who are starving; people are starving “here” – in the space in which you and I live. You and I are working to make our lives work in the same condition that results in hunger and starvation.

Starvation both maintains and dramatizes a world that does not work. Persisting throughout history, it has accounted for more deaths and suffering than all epidemics, wars, and natural disasters combined. During the past five years alone, more people have died as a consequence of starvation than from all the wars, revolutions, and murders of the past 150 years. As you read this, 28 people are dying in our world each minute as a consequence of hunger, three-quarters of them children.

The bare statistics are so shocking that we rarely examine the further impact of starvation on our own lives. Hunger, by its persistence, seems to invalidate that our lives could matter. It seems to prove that we are capable only of gestures. It suppresses the space in which each of us lives.

Yet, precisely because the impact of starvation on our lives is so great, its existence is actually an opportunity. It is an opportunity to get beyond merely defending what we have, beyond the futility of self-interest, beyond the hopelessness of clinging to opinions and making gestures.

In fact, in experiencing the truth underlying hunger, one comes to realize that the ordinarily unnoticed laws that determine the persistence of hunger on this planet are precisely the laws that keep the world from working. And the principles of the end of hunger and starvation in the world are the very principles necessary to make the world work.

So this paper is not an explanation, a solution, an opinion, or a point of view about the problem of hunger. It is an examination of what is so about the persistence of hunger, aimed at answering two questions:

1. What are the laws governing and determining the persistence of hunger on our planet? Not the reasons, however cogent; not the justifications, however comforting; not the systems of explanation, however consistent or clever. If we were merely looking for reasons to explain the persistence of hunger and starvation, we could logically deduce them from the facts.

Fundamental laws and principles, however, cannot be deduced. One knows them by creating them from nothing, out of one’s Self. One does not arrive at fundamental laws and principles as a function of what is already known. Such laws and principles do not merely explain; they illuminate. They do not merely add to what we know; they create a new space in which knowing can occur. The test of whether we are dealing with fundamental laws and principles, or with mere reasons and explanations, is whether there is a shift from controversy, frustration, and gesturing, to mastery, motion, and completion.

2. What are the principles of the end of hunger and starvation on the planet? Not new programs of solution, no matter how saleable or clever; not different or better opinions, no matter how arguable; not points of view, no matter how agreeable. This discussion is not about another good idea. It is about revealing the fundamental principles of the end of hunger and starvation on our planet.

Introduction to : The End of Starvation: Creating an Idea Whose Time Has Come by Werner Erhard, 1977

Every era has a relatively small number of original and influential persons, those who generate initiative, discoveries, achievements and insights which shape our own cultures and societies — and often those of future generations. If we know these people well, it is through their works: their campaigns and institutions, their books and inventions, their vaccines, their symphonies, their monuments and their firms.

The Saturday Satellite Series with Werner Erhard was a program designed to give us a new access to such people — a glimpse of the commitments and visions that inform such lives, and that serve as the source of their creations. The series was conducted as a dialogue between Werner Erhard and prominent guest speakers who are widely recognized for their achievements and expertise. These dialogues were designed not to present particular views, but to open an inquiry that elicits creative thinking and productive action from and for all participants.