We find ourselves captivated by a whole lot of things. There’s a whole bunch of stuff that we become absolutely fascinated with, sometimes to the point that we’re held in some sort of riveted hypnotic trance. A lot of times we’re kind of like mesmerized moths who find ourselves irresistibly drawn to some sort of light, erratically fluttering around it until we either lose interest in it or are zapped by it.
Oddly enough, we often seem to be captivated by the very things that can hurt us. We seem to have an insatiable tendency to wrangle with risk. There’s an unquenchable compulsion within us to ‘play with fire,’ or ‘push the envelope,’ or ‘step over the line,’ or ‘dance with the devil’ as they say. We’re all daredevils at heart, some more and some less, but we all have a bit of risk-taking engrained in us somewhere. And in some place at some time, an opportunity to let that side of ourselves out to play presents itself.
Healthy Reasons for Stepping Over the Lines
Sometimes those decisions to ‘step over the line’ are a result of our desire to elevate our humanity, or to seize untapped potential and thrust ourselves to new levels. Sometimes our intent is to overcome fears that have dogged us and crush low self-esteems that have diminished us. At times we step over these lines because we’re tired of living out mediocre lives and passively slogging through this pathetic existence of ours. Such endeavors are thoughtful, positive and based on the intent to grow and expand. Yet, sometimes our intent is something much less.
Playing with the Dark
One of the things that we seem captivated with and frequently entranced by is the darker side of life. There’s something tantalizing about dark things as if they’re the ‘forbidden fruit’ that we know we shouldn’t touch but choose to touch anyway because of the excitement attached to touching them. Too often they become the very ‘dark light’ that we as the moths find ourselves entranced by and fluttering around. And so we ‘step over the line’ out of being entranced rather than out of a desire to elevate our humanity, or to seize untapped potential, or overcome fears, or crush self-esteems that have diminished us, or decide that we’re not going to passively exit this life without leaving a legacy that will provide a beacon to coming generations. We step over the line with no forethought and we end up being forlorn at a result.
Halloween is one of those things that captivates many. It’s been granted status as a holiday and because it has, what it is and what it symbolizes has been granted some sort of legitimacy. Halloween and what it embodies has been given some stamp of approval because we’ve stamped it onto the calendar. And so we feel we’ve been granted some element of permission to play with darkness because we’ve got this holiday on the calendar that says we can.
As with anything else, we need to think about what we’re doing when we’re deciding to cross a line . . . whatever that line might be. What is our reason? What is our purpose? If we’re out to raise our lives to the next level or advance others, our reasons likely have legitimacy. But if we’re crossing the line just to say we’ve crossed the line, or we’re doing so out of some captivation with whatever it is that’s captured our fancy, or dabble in something that we feel that’s forbidden, then we’re likely to become captive to those very things.
Playing in the Dark
We have unparalleled opportunities to do unbelievable things. But if those opportunities are not tempered by wisdom and held with the recognition that not all opportunities are healthy opportunities, then we are doomed to cross a whole bunch of lines that are going to create a whole lot of problems. We’ll play in the dark and be darkened ourselves by doing so.