I’m fascinated by the edge.
The edge of the mental, the emotional, the physical, and all that we normally understand consciousness to be. The idea that my boundaries are self-imposed, blurry and malleable. That by stroking, nudging, tickling and occasionally taking to the grey perimeters with a large blunt object that I might learn what is on the other side and that I might understand this side just that bit better. That some limits may be set in stone, but others flow like the tide. The intrigue of exploration vibrates through me. I’ve come to understand that I’ve been playing with the edge my whole life.
Where is the edge of my patience? My pleasure, my fear, my courage? My body’s physical possibilities? What if I take an idea and push it as far as it will go? What metamorphosis of the mind will happen? Surely I can discover new ways of thinking. I crave new ways of thinking and feeling. I’m addicted to the dialogue between mind and body that happens on the edge. The to and fro of internal negotiation. Fearful words and strong heart. Fearful heart despite strong words. The body has its own distinctive voice that can be unexpectedly deafening. And when the dialogue is over there isn’t silence. There is soul singing; and it’s bringing down the house.
Make no mistake, the edge is uncomfortable. Challenging. Downright fucking scary. I am breathless and sweating. The energy there is humming with beauty. The lessons are powerful, profound. Deep insights await. The edge is a pivot point. Decisions made there can sometimes not be undone.
Over many years I have learnt to experience the edge in two distinct ways. Both deliberately and via Spirit’s game of Dump and Run.
Dump and Run. What a fucker of an edge game. The challenge of being thrust out there, no warning, bright light blaring on the darkest parts of you. Your hairiest, smelliest, most malevolent beasts exposed and visibly rampaging through your being. Unexpectedly and shockingly loose, the great universal jester just dumping you there and leaving you to deal with it. But at this point I am not laughing at the cosmic joke. As I wrangle the beast, or hide from it or do whatever I need to do I wonder if I will ever laugh again. In the well of darkness all laughter sounds hollow.
But deliberately testing the edge of my own accord…. the story is different. I can see it in the distance. I know and seek it. Sometimes I run toward it passionately, and stop abruptly at the last minute, breathless and laughing recklessly into the wild space beyond.
Dancing, dancing, to the edge. The spinning, whirling, thrashing chaos of dance. Flailing like a dying earth-bound octopus. Simultaneously blind jelly and crazy limbs.
And if I can just trust enough to let go, to ride the unrestraint just that bit further, I know I will fall, fall, fall into darkness for the shortest of moments that lasts forever …. before exploding. A starburst of light.
Last night I dreamed of the edge.
I drove there in my beloved car. It was my real-life car. She is Aurora, Goddess of the Dawn. She gives me so much joy and takes me everywhere. We adventure together. Along bush tracks and on beaches. Down endless highways. I drive her great distances in order to dance, learn and play.
In my dream I wasn’t planning on going to the edge. I was just looking for a bit of natural bush beauty and solitude. But instead I arrived somewhere unexpected. Not the lush green forest I had envisaged. Instead I got to the end of the dirt road, parked my car and stared.
I am on the top of a cliff, looking down. Down an almost vertical drop, brown, rocky and parched. And dotted amongst the entire cliff-face are cars. 4WD’s of the most rugged kind. Many old-school models, beaten up and much loved. Each one is parked on a small flat space, a horizontal indent in the side of the cliff. I can see no trails or paths, but I know the owner of each vehicle has somehow negotiated the vertical descent. And now sits, safe as an eagles egg in its carefully built nest.
And they have driven themselves to the view of the edge of the universe. It is twilight and there is nothing but endless fading sky. Darkening melancholic blue with a brushing of glittery light. Flowing up into the vastness of forever. Out and up and out and up and out till it’s so big and I’m so expanded that I can barely breathe for awe. But that’s okay, because the infinite is breathing for me. Through me.
It’s the most glorious sight.
I am inspired by those who have come to the edge. Because it is apparent that when they have been humbled by the infinite and have absorbed the vastness of all that is, when they have conversed and smiled knowingly into newly twinkling starry eyes above, they confidently expect to drive away. Taking the essence of the magic with them back up the impossible cliff. And I am singularly overwhelmed by the magnitude of their trust. In themselves, their cars and in the faith that the infinite space behind them holding it’s blue black hand against their wheels, is securing them to the cliff face, guiding their upward climb.
I stand staring and wondering. Inspired by the vision of what is possible. Because to go to the edge and beyond is clearly possible. And I sense return is possible too, but only with seemingly impossible faith.
Standing before the edge. Wondering. Dare I find my own path? Dare I drive over the edge? And if I do, can I get back? Do I trust in my Aurora, in the Goddess of the Dawn…
Can I? Will I? And the answer that I feel is simple.
I don’t know.
“I have always felt that the action most worth watching is not at the center of things but where edges meet. I like shorelines, weather fronts, international borders. There are interesting frictions and incongruities in those places.”
The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down