As people go through their daily routines they all have an innate desire to live life. While living life may carry drastically different definitions from one individual to the next, the desire is still very obviously imbedded in one’s mind and body. To some, life is building a financially secure stage to provide the ability to raise a family. To others, life is a series of inevitable events, a holy plan set into motion by an omnipotent being many refer to as God. Still, to others life is something different, a random ever-changing set of events and experiences that shape each individual separately and uniquely. These interpretations are all different but the lives we live are harmoniously intertwined and permanently interconnected. We all experience a different perspective of the same reality. We may believe in different philosophies, practice different religions, judge people differently but fundamentally we cannot exist without each other. The ultimate truth of life is that we are all experiencing part of the same consciousness. My understanding of reality relies on my interpretations of others’ experiences as well as my own. We are all bound to reach our own understanding through our existential human nature, which we all share. So in this innate desire to live life, we as humans all want something similar, even though each individual set of experiences has created different perspectives as to what exactly an ideal life consists of.
Slacklining, similar to rock climbing, is blessed with a beautifully tight knit community of people who are passionate about the progression of the sport. Before describing the Slacklife, it is important to understand the dirt bag life style that climbing has perpetrated over the last several decades. Just how summiting prominent technical mountains has captivated an adventurous life style, and encouraged many to live simply in order to live fully and suck the marrow out of life, rock climbing too, offers a great sense of accomplishment, which captivates a certain type of people. These people let the rock lead them through life. Along side this sense of accomplishment from climbing comes an adventure filled lifestyle with the will to complete the journey at hand. The dirt bag climber lifestyle usually consists of few material possessions, little income, and rejection from a large part of society, for the climber is more interested in accumulating many beautiful and meaningful experiences with those close to him or her, rather than expensive things. A sense of livelihood for the climber comes not from a 40-hour work week, but from the many late nights around the campfire and the many early morning hikes before sunrise to get to the next unclimbed big wall or boulder problem. Climbers have perfected their sport through their lifestyle. The best climbers in the world live out of old cargo vans and sleep in sleeping bags because that lifestyle filled with passion is their way to fully live. Climbing has helped them find who they are, and thus they are happy.
Slacklining offers many people a way to engage in a balance sport that decreases stress and relieves anxiety. Slacklining has a lot to offer to those who are enthusiastic about it. Its potential is huge and just like how climbing created a lifestyle specifically designed to pursue the most epic climbs, slacklining has birthed a lifestyle to pursue walking the gap between beautiful places. The Slacklife is an adventure lifestyle based around traveling, sharing the slackline community, searching to satisfy your curiosity, and attempting to redefine the boundaries of ordinary waking consciousness. Living the Slacklife is never ending, always changing and full of adventure. Living the Slacklife does not mean you try to slackline everyday; it doesn’t mean you enjoy setting up slacklines when you have the free time to do so; and the Slacklife definitely does not mean you bring slacklining into your life because it is worthwhile. The Slacklife means you wake up everyday with the intention to better your balance and to better understand that you are balance. Your immune system balances the body’s health, your thoughts balance your mind, and you mind balances your actions. Every one of your actions is based around centering yourself and constantly improving yourself; slacklining is a way of life. Living the Slacklife means you full heartedly appreciate what the line has taught you and what you still have to learn. This life style means you are always obsessed with improvement yet you accept defeat as a friendly acquaintance. Falling short of your goals must be understood as being ok, and that failing is a positive learning experience. The Slacklife teaches patience and humility, determination and virtue. Living the Slacklife is a way for many to pursue their innate desire to live. Being on the slackline and in control of the slackline is one of the most powerful feelings of being alive and in the moment. Being in control of the line is a great metaphor for life itself because when you are in control you have freedom. Control provides room for freedom to grow and if you nurture this freedom, soon it will flower into a beautiful space where life can thrive. This feeling drives people to change the way they live their life. This feeling is what many people are searching for and those living the Slacklife know that they have found it.
Mostly, the Slacklife is more than a catchy phrase. It is not cliché but rather it is a definitive adventure lifestyle that has much to offer. Although low incomes and a lack of nice things are common among those living the Slacklife, a lack of friends and a lack of life altering experiences are not. This lifestyle brings joy and fulfillment to those who attempt to follow it because those who follow their passion are never led astray, but rather are paving the way for others to see and then follow. All those who live the Slacklife may have different reasons for living life the way they do but one thing they all hold in common is their search for freedom. All those living passionately are in search for true freedom. Finding freedom is not something someone achieves through just thought but through action too. Those who actively pursue their passion are bound to learn the true meaning of freedom.
Freedom is an interesting term in this day and age. The United States of America is considered the land of the free and the home of the brave. Does this mean everyone in America is free? Surely not, for true freedom is rooted in a peaceful mind, because the mind knows when it is free. If you follow your true passions and you search for freedom through these passionate pursuits, your mind is satisfied with your body’s work and your mind is free. When the mind is free, it can rest peacefully. Stressful work, family conflicts, health problems, financial dilemmas, and other poisonous environments all create damaging atmospheres for the mind to work effectively and efficiently. When someone can pursue a life they love to live, the mind can function to its fullest capabilities. Love is the root cause of creativity. A purely creative mind is stimulated through the love of pursuing greatness. If you love what you do and you have found that your passion is to balance your life then you are living the Slacklife and through your innate desire to live you will find true freedom. Embrace this freedom for it is your true self.
Written by Marcus Nelson