“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.”
Quotations from and About Werner Erhard
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 in life, 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.
Werner Erhard in discussion with Professor Jonathan D. Moreno, April 2016 at the University of Pennsylvania.
“You’ve got to be with your self uninterruptedly for a long time. And that’s an experience which you and I don’t afford ourselves very often. You know, we stop for a cigarette, we stop to make conversation, we stop to divert our selves, to entertain ourselves. But, during this 60 hours [of the est Training], you really get to look deep down inside your self.”–Werner Erhard, 1976
Werner Erhard in The New York Times, November 29, 2015
“For several years before his latest professional reincarnation, Mr. Erhard consulted for businesses and government agencies like the Russian adult-education program the Znaniye Society and a nonprofit organization supporting clergy in Ireland.
Enter the Harvard economist Michael Jensen. Dr. Jensen, who is famous in financial circles for championing the concepts of shareholder value and executive stock options, had taken a Landmark course in Boston at the suggestion of his daughter, who mended a rocky relationship with Dr. Jensen after taking the course herself.
“‘I became convinced we should work to get this kind of transformational material into the academies,’ he said, adding that he considers Mr. Erhard “one of the great intellectuals of the century.'” – Peter Haldeman writing about Werner Erhard in The New York Times
“When my integrity is lacking, I am clear that I just got to be a bit smaller as a person. That keeps me working on my integrity. And the thing about integrity is it’s a mountain with no top.”
-Werner Erhard in The New York Times
“Harvard economist Michael Jensen, who is famous in financial circles for championing the concepts of shareholder value and executive stock options, “I became convinced we should work to get this kind of transformational material into the academies,” he said, adding that he considers Mr. Erhard “one of the great intellectuals of the century.”
Peter Haldeman – New York Times, November 29, 2015
“Werner Erhard paced the aisle between rows of desks in a Toronto conference room. “If you’re going to be a leader, you’re going to have to have a very loose relationship with this thing you call ‘I’ or ‘me,’” he shouted. “Maybe that whole thing in me around which the universe revolves isn’t so central! Maybe life is not about the self but about self-transcendence! You got a problem with that?”
No one in the room had a problem with that. The desks were occupied by 27 name-tagged academics from around the world. And in the course of the day, a number of them would take the mike to pose what their instructor referred to as “yeah buts, how ‘bouts or what ifs” in response to his pronouncements – but no one had a problem with them.
Peter Haldeman – New York Times, November 29, 2015
“If you’re going to be a leader, you’re going to have to have a very loose relationship with this thing you call ‘I’ or ‘me’. Maybe that whole thing in me around which the universe revolves isn’t so central! Maybe life is not about the self but about self-transcendence.”
-Werner Erhard, The New York Times, November 28, 2015
“In manifesting your aliveness, you will want to follow a principle which was beautifully stated by Albert Schweitzer when he said, ‘I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: The only ones among you who will be truly happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.’ Notice that Dr. Schweitzer says ‘sought and found how to serve.’ He did not say ‘try to serve,’ or ‘try something and drop it,’ or ‘do the best you can.’
Happiness comes from having served successfully.
One continues to expand in one’s ability to serve by meeting the challenge of actually delivering the results.
Decide on a project for which you are willing to take complete responsibility. Complete the project successfully. Relate this achievement to others as an inspiration for them. Your willingness to express yourself may be just the trigger needed by someone else to do something for themselves. From now on, don’t wait for something to happen to you. Actually take responsibility for making something happen. Keep at it until you make it a successful experience for everyone. You can make the difference.”
-Werner Erhard 1971
“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 50 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.”
“Rather than trying to find our true selves – struggling to figure out “who we are” – in transformation, we bring forth the possibility of creating ourselves, so that life is a creative expression of our stand.
“Transformation does not increase or improve the options we have before us. Rather, in the moment of transformation, there is the presence of choice, as the phenomenon of creating possibilities – no more, no less. The actual choosing remains of our own making – no more likely, nor guaranteed. Yet, in the recognition and ownership of the choice appears true freedom of action – an action born solely of the courage to be.”