Border country

Daily Reading, May 22

In his book Living on the Border of the Holy, a title that is itself significant, William Countryman writes of that border country that we all carry within us. He describes it as a kind of fault line that runs right down the middle of our lives. We can of course ignore it but it does not go away. We all live with it and we all have our unique experience of it, for it is part of who we are as human beings. It connects the surface or the ordinary reality with its deeper roots; indeed, he would actually claim that the border country is the realm in which human existence finds its meaning:

This border country is a place of intense vitality. It does not so much draw us away from the everyday world as it plunges us deeper into a reality of which the everyday world is like the surface. . . . To live there for a while is like having veils pulled away. In the long run we find that the border country is in fact the place we have always lived, but it is seen in a new and clearer light. Stay at the border, in active conversation with the holy and the everyday.

From To Pause at the Threshold: Reflections on Living on the Border by Esther de Waal. © 2001. Used by permission of Morehouse Publishing, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

Past Posts