“There were simply too many stars, and the sky was too vast and deep.  A huge, overpowering foreign object, it surrounded me, enveloped me, and made me feel almost dizzy.  Until that moment, I had always thought that the earth on which I stood was a solid object that would last for ever.  Or rather, I had never thought about such a thing at all.  I had simply taken it for granted.  But in fact, the earth was nothing but a chunk of rock floating in one little corner of the universe: a temporary foothold in the vast emptyness of space.  It – and all of us with it – could be blown away tomorrow by a momentary flash or something or a tiny shift in the universe’s energy.  Beneath this breathtaking skyful of stars, the uncertainty of my own existence struck me with full force (though not in so many words, of course).  It was a stunning discovery for a young boy.”
 
Haruki Murakami,
The Wind-up Bird Chronicle
Book Two: Bird as a Prophet
Chapter 9
 
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