As I was doing a clearing of some of my bookshelves, I came upon this small book hidden away between my larger tomes. It had been many years since I read this, and since I have been meditating daily for a few years now, I thought I should go back and read it again.
This book is a very short collection of “scriptures” that Kerouac penned regarding his explorations into Buddhism and shamanism. What is really cool about the text (in addition to the spiritual insights) is the glimpse it provides into the writer’s thoughts and practices that clearly influenced his work.
I figure I’ll share a few scriptures along with my thoughts on them.
That sky, if it is anything other than an
illusion of my mortal mind I wouldnt have said
“that sky.” Thus I made that sky, I am the
golden eternity. I am Mortal Golden Eternity.
Everything that we perceive is nothing more than a construct of our minds. Basically, we create our individual and shared realities. That’s why everything that we sense must be considered illusion, because it is nothing more that our thoughts projected onto the canvas of the universe.
God is not outside us but is just us, the
living and the dead, the never-lived and
never-died. That we should learn it only now, is
supreme reality, it was written a long time ago
in the archives of the universal mind, it is already
done, there’s no more to do.
Everything is not only connected; everything is one. There really is no separation. Separation is yet another illusion and construct of the mind. We only perceive ourselves as separate, and this perception is what leads to suffering.
Meditate outdoors. The dark trees at night
are not really the dark trees at night, it’s
only the golden eternity.
First off, I love meditating while out in nature. It is just easier for me to connect with spirit. And there have been times when I experienced what Kerouac succinctly describes here: the melting away of the illusion of perception, where everything dissolves into oneness. That blissful moment where the lines of separation blur and, to quote Blake, “every thing would appear to man as it is, Infinite.”
If you are at all interested in spirituality, or like the beat writers, then you should check this book out. It’s short enough to read in a sitting, but worth taking your time and pondering the wisdom within.
4 responses to “Thoughts on “The Scripture of the Golden Eternity” by Jack Kerouac”
I’ve often thought that the earth and sky and the creatures that move through them are real, and that my sense of a Self is the illusion. At the level of physics and spirit, it’s all oneness, and my perception is clouded much of the time with daily busyness. I wonder where Kerouac was in his struggles with his addictions when he wrote this, if it was during a stage of his life where he was clean and sober.
Great question. I don’t know enough about Kerouac’s life to even guess at that. Thanks for your comment, as always. Cheers!
Nice summary Jeff. I am reading a translation of the Emerald tablet and feel the same vibration. What beauty it is to meditate in nature on such writings. Hope I get my hands on it.
Totally agree. Thanks for your comment.