Wednesday, September 16, 2015

the roaring silence of the diamond

a short excerpt from Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac

While waiting for his next freight train (the "Midnight Ghost") to jump for the ride up to L.A. Ray Smith heads out from the railroad yard in El Paso, Texas, out into the desert:
There just isn't any kind of night's sleep in the world that can compare with the night's sleep you get in the desert winter night, providing you're good and warm in a duck-down bag. The silence is so intense that you can hear your own blood roar in your ears but louder than that by far is the mysterious roar which I always identify with the roaring of the diamond of wisdom, the mysterious roar of silence itself, which is a great Shhhh reminding you of something you've seemed to have forgotten in the stress of your days since birth. I wished I could explain it to those I loved, to my mother, to Japhy, but there just weren't any words to describe the nothingness and purity of it. "Is there a certain and definite teaching to be given to all living creatures?" was the question probably asked to beetle-browed snowy Dipankara, and his answer was the roaring silence of the diamond.
source: Jack Kerouac,  Dharma Bums, p. 157 

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