Living on the Edge

January 30, 2021 2 By Lance Kelly

There are many ways that attract people to live on the edge of themselves. Examples include extreme sports, taking big risks in business or gambling everything at the throw of a dice. Without the adrenaline or buzz generated in such ventures, the mediocrity of normal existence is living death. Then there are people who, having experienced the euphoric effect of drugs, say that it would be wonderful to have the same chemical high induced from the body in a natural way. However, the state everybody yearns to realise uninterruptedly is neither a high nor low but a state of equilibrium.

From the spiritual perspective, living on the edge is neither a positive or negative experience – nor dependent on the fluctuating feelings of the emotionally reactive self. The buzz of excitement (or the opposite of depression) cannot be held indefinitely; but the state of neutrality, which is the subtle harmony of wellbeing within the body, is ever present as the natural emanation of life. To enter this state as a conscious being, it’s necessary to confront and take responsibility for the acquired ignorance of the world gathered in time. This background vibration of movement and agitation is generated by the chaos of the mind and emotional body.

To live on the edge is to refuse to leave the moment without reflection on the past or anticipation of the future; this is the optimum point of now or supreme creativity. To the degree that this state of being can be held, the deeper the perception of reality – but, paradoxically, the more the body of unhappiness fights to survive. This is the previously hidden aspect of self that is now exposed in the light of self-knowledge through increasing vigilance and the resolve to undermine its hold. The world is a projection of self which the person creates through the experience and memorable impressions of the past. However, the world is a structure of mind and only as real as any person is prepared to believe. This happens most commonly through becoming identified exclusively with the appearance of physical bodies and material objects while disregarding the invisible realm whence all things originate.

Only by living on the edge can the negative effects of the world as inner pain and anxiety be dissolved for good. The massed population has little interest in discovering the truth behind the body. It’s enough for most to simply cope with providing the staple needs to survive. And for those who have more than they need, there is often the craving to amass more wealth and material possessions. This dynamic tension between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ agitates the human psyche. The overall effect for the masses desensitises the connection with the inner state of love, which magnifies the attachment to the world. To compensate, external agencies such as drugs, alcohol, sexual promiscuity or just keeping busy becomes the overriding focus of the life.

The physical body is our tangible reality. To exist is to be in relationship with the world of other bodies and all things which populate the space in which we live. Having been projected from original unity, the task is to get back to where life begins and subsequently never ends: the meeting point where the purity of spirit enters the matter of sensory form. The spirit is nothing that can be imagined or defined. Only by surrendering what is known can the unknowable be realised. Courage is to be willing to abide here in this place on the edge of existence.