SINCE TIME IMMEMORIAL PEOPLE HAVE SOUGHT ENLIGHTENMENT AND SPIRITUAL AWAKENING. SUCH WAS THE CASE OF A YOUNG AMERICAN CALLED LAURANCE DARRELL FOLLOWING A DEVASTATING WARTIME EVENT. SEEKING AN ANSWER TO LIFE AND THE INFINITE HE TRAVELED TO INDIA EVENTUALLY STUDYING UNDER A VENERATED MAHARSHI. HIGH IN THE MOUNTAINS, HE EXPERIENCED ENLIGHTENMENT. BRITISH AUTHOR W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM CHRONICLED HIS STORY IN A BOOK HE CALLED THE RAZOR'S EDGE.
- THE RAZOR'S EDGE: W. Somerset Maugham, Sri Ramana Maharshi, Guy Hague, and Zen
Explores who Larry Darrell was in "real life" and what happened to him post-novel.
- 20th CENTURY NOVELS: The Razor's Edge
Maugham's novel was a runnaway bestseller. Some of the reasons why are explored.
- RAZOR'S EDGE NOTES
Quick overview of the novel's major characters and themes done in a list-type note style.
- ZEN ENLIGHTENMENT: The Path Unfolds
Recounts meeting "Larry Darrell" in real life and the downstream results of that encounter.
- GUY HAGUE
Some people think Guy Hague was the real life role model for Larry Darrell. Find out.
- SRI RAMANA MAHARSHI
Insights and background into the "holy man" Maugham used as a model for Larry Darrell's teacher.
Additional gurus, teachers and spiritual guides influential in Darrell's life:
- RELIGION AND CATHOLICISM IN THE RAZOR' EDGE
Although eastern mysticism is the main focus in Maugham's novel, threads of other religions abide.
- MAXIM'S RESTAURANT, PARIS, AND THE RAZOR'S EDGE
Maxim's was the backdrop to one of Isabel and Larry's major meetings.
- LAFAYETTE FLYING CORPS
In WWI, Larry, an American, served in the Royal Flying Corps. Watching his closest friend die sent him on his spirtual quest. Years later he meets a friend who flew for the French.
- AS THE DAY BROKE IN ITS SPLENDOR
Larry tells Maugham of his meeting with the Maharshi and eventual spiritual awakening.
- THE BEST OF THE MAUGHAM BIOGRAPHIES:
- KATHA UPANISHAD
Maugham opens his novel and gets the title THE RAZOR'S EDGE from the Katha Upanisand. What is the Katha Upanishad?
THE WANDERLING AND WIKIPEDIA
Fundamentally, our experience as experienced is not different from the Zen master's. Where
we differ is that we place a fog, a particular kind of conceptual overlay onto that experience
and then make an emotional investment in that overlay, taking it to be "real" in and of itself.