THE RAZOR'S EDGE


EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT SOMERSET MAUGHAM'S
NOVEL THE RAZOR'S EDGE. WHO LARRY DARRELL WAS IN REAL LIFE, WHAT
HAPPENED TO HIM, ETC.





Since time immemorial people have sought out Enlightenment and Spiritual
Awakening. Such was the case of a young American called Laurance Darrell
after personally witnessing a devastating wartime event. Seeking answers
to life and the infinite he traveled to India eventually studying with a highly venerated Maharshi. High in the mountains, he experienced Enlightenment.
British author W. Somerset Maugham chronicled his story in a book titled:

THE RAZOR'S EDGE.






  1. THE MENTOR: From William Somerset Maugham's The Razor's Edge
    Explores who Larry Darrell was in "real life" and what happened to him post-novel.

  2. GUY HAGUE
    Some people think Guy Hague was the real life role model for Larry Darrell. Find out.

  3. 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:

  4. ZEN ENLIGHTENMENT: The Path Unfolds
    Recounts meeting "Larry Darrell" in real life and the downstream results of that encounter.

  5. 20th CENTURY NOVELS: The Razor's Edge
    Maugham's novel was a runnaway bestseller. Some of the reasons why are explored.

  6. W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM: Travels In India
    Just when was Maugham in India and meet the Maharshi Sri Ramana?

    • SRI RAMANA AND SOMERSET MAUGHAM
      What did Ramana actually tell Darrell during their first meeting? The book version is different from the movie. Which one is correct?

  7. RELIGION AND CATHOLICISM IN THE RAZOR' EDGE
    Although eastern mysticism is the main focus in Maugham's novel, threads of other religions abide.

  8. RAZOR'S EDGE NOTES
    Quick overview of the novel's major characters and themes done in a list-type note style.

  9. MAXIM'S RESTAURANT, PARIS, AND THE RAZOR'S EDGE
    Maxim's was the backdrop to one of Isabel and Larry's major meetings.

  10. AS THE DAY BROKE IN ITS SPLENDOR
    Larry tells Maugham of his meeting with the Maharshi and eventual spiritual awakening.

  11. WILLIAM SOMERSET MAUGHAM
    Good biography. Lots of Maugham graphics, from early childhood to late adult.

    Two additional, concise biographies, each from a different perspective:

  12. KATHA UPANISHAD
    Maugham opens his novel and gets the title THE RAZOR'S EDGE from the Katha Upanisand. What is the Katha Upanishad?


BARBARA BACK
MAUGHAM'S FEMALE CONFIDANT


In 1938, the noted British author and playwright William Somerset Maugham, seeking audience with one of India's most venerated holy men, the Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi, in order to gather additional material for his book "The Razor's Edge," traveled to India, staying three months.

Although The Razor's Edge has remained one of the best selling books since being published most people consider it to be not much more than just a work of fiction that was made into a couple of movies. Actually, the story was based on a person Maugham met in real life. The central character, given the name Larry Darrell by Maugham in the book, that same real life person he met after having his life saved by his best friend in World War I during a raging aerial dog fight out over the western front, then only to see his friend die right in front of his eyes from wounds received from that very same dog fight. Doing so he ended up with a deep unending remorse. Seeking a way out and the meaning of life, Darrell, after years of travel throughout Europe, ended up in India. While there, through the grace and light of the aforementioned holy man, self realized on his own high in the mountains miles from ashram. Maugham writes the following regarding what Darrell told him about his Enlightenment:


"How grand the sight was that was displayed before me as the day broke in its splendour...I was ravished with the beauty of the world. I'd never known such exaltation and such a transcendent joy. I had a strange sensation, a tingling that arose in my feet and traveled up to my head, and I felt as though I were suddenly released from my body and as pure spirit partook of a loveliness I had never conceived. I had a sense that a knowledge more than human possessed me, so that everything that had been confused was clear and everything that had perplexed me was explained. I was so happy that it was pain and I struggled to release myself from it, for I felt that if it lasted a moment longer I should die; and yet it was such rapture that I was ready to die rather than forego it. How can I tell you what I felt? No words can tell the ecstasy of my bliss. When I came to myself I was exhausted and trembling" (see)


The graphic below, from the black and white 1946 movie version of The Razor's Edge, shows Larry Darrell, the central character in the story, meeting with the holy man for the very first time. To see a short video excerpt from the movie of that meeting and what Maugham reported the holy man had to say to Darrell that changed his life, and possibly could yours, please click the graphic below:


WHAT THE HOLY MAN TOLD DARRELL, IT IS HIGHLY RELEVANT

(please click image)


There is a free, full and complete online PDF version of The Razor's Edge book available at the link below as well as, for those who would rather not read the book but rather watch the movie (or do both), a full version of the black and white 1946 movie by clicking the graphic below:



(for full length movie please click image)

THE RAZOR'S EDGE PDF


(please click image)

FREE ONLINE PDF SCANNED VERSION

(please click image)


THE ART COLLECTION OF W. SOMERSET MAUGHAM


MAP AND HISTORY OF THE RAMANA ASHRAM


DOING HARD TIME IN A ZEN MONASTERY


SRI RAMANA'S WESTERN DISCIPLES



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.


(PLEASE CLICK)



AWAKENING
EXPERIENCE IN THE

MODERN ERA

(click image)



E-MAIL
THE WANDERLING

(please click)


GETTING LETTERS AND EMAILS


GOOGLE'S ALL WANDERLING PAGE


THE WANDERLING: TAKING HIM WITH A GRAIN OF SALT



















SRI RAMANA AND SOMERSET MAUGHAM
THE HOLY MAN, LARRY DARRELL, INDIA, AND THE RAZOR'S EDGE