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How much searing heat and acrid black smoke can you stand in your burning eightieth-floor penthouse before the once-unthinkable becomes the now-inevitable and jumping off your balcony becomes your best option? That’s the dynamic that drives the real journey of awakening, which is why so few actually make it. Even if it turns out that there’s nothing to wake up to, or just a sidewalk to stop your fall, it’s better than the continued and worsening pain of that fast-approaching and all-consuming blaze. Nobody steps into the abyss from a desire for freedom or a longing for truth or for the love of God, and certainly not for vanity or fame or fortune. We never jump until plummeting to our doom becomes the lesser evil. We only jump because the flames are so close that it has become impossible not to jump, and if you don’t like it, you shouldn’t have been playing with matches.
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