Silence

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“Silence is the great teacher, and to learn its lessons, you must pay attention to it. There is no substitute for the creative inspiration, knowledge, and stability that come from knowing how to contact your core of inner silence.” –   Deepak Chopra

 

“Silence is not the absence of something but the presence of everything.” ~Gordon Hempton

Let’s face it, we live in a busy and ever-present dull background of noise and distraction, and so, when I think about writing a post about silence, I hesitate to say too much.

Apparently the quietest place on earth is at the anechoic chamber at Orfield Laboratories in Minnesota. If a soft whisper is measured at 20 decibel’s, the anechoic chamber is 1/16th of that. It is the Guinness World Record’s quietest place on earth.

This small dark room, is massively insulated with layers of concrete and steel to block out exterior sources of noise, and ironically those who enter this silence, find it far from peaceful. In fact, most people find its silence very disturbing.

So why is silence so disturbing and difficult for us to be in?

Apparently, being deprived of the usual reassuring ambient sounds of life, can induce fear – and can explain why sensory deprivation is a form of torture. Astronauts do part of their training in anechoic chambers at Nasa, so they can learn to cope with the silence of space. The presence of sound means things are working; it’s business as usual – and so when sound is absent, it signals to our brain there is a malfunction.

This helps me understand why we tend to avoid silence and why life continues to offer distraction and noise to keep avoiding it. But in doing so, we miss all the amazing benefits that silence offers.

Sitting in silence is definitely a practice and for me it has broadened my perspective and helped me monitor my thoughts in order to understand myself and my life more deeply. Silence has brought immense peace to my everyday life, helping me embrace patience and mindfulness toward myself and others.

Shhhhh.  You might be surprised what you hear.

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38 thoughts on “Silence

  1. After I lost my hubby, I could not be in silence. I needed the comforting sounds of life around me…even the TV. Now, finally, I can enjoy silence again…and yes, it’s a gift ❤

    1. I felt the same early in my grief too Helen. It takes time to integrate the pain and heaviness of grief. I’m so glad you can allow silence in again. Blessings to you 🙏🏻🌈

  2. Loved this quote by Gordon Hempton: “Silence is not the absence of something but the presence of everything.”
    I think I need to go outside and sit awhile under my big pine tree. Thanks for the reminder.

  3. I don’t mind my own silence, but like you pointed out, dead silence can be disturbing. I once had a session in one of those sensory deprivation tanks, where you float in the dark (I couldn’t do it and had to put on the optional blue light). I can’t say I enjoyed it at all! Deep woods silence is about as quiet as I can take it. 😉

  4. This is a wonderful meditation on silence, and now I want to know more about the quietest place on earth. I feel serene in this contemplation, and wonder if I can find the silence within, even with the sounds of the dryer and the refridgerator nearby… and now this has become a listening exercise. Wonderful, wonderful post 😇

    1. I’m beginning to understand Ka, that I don’t need to be anywhere special to connect to my silence within. I do need to practice going inward and use my breath and visualising to help, but the more I do it, the more I want to be in it. Thank you for your comment. 🙏🏻🌈

  5. I’m sitting here in a quiet house, listening to the wind blow through the trees and my dogs snore softly. It’s *my* kind of silence…I feel as though I’m wrapped in a warm blanket. Thanks for the peaceful glide into the week, Karen!

  6. Lovely, perfect post about something that is most important, and making time for some of it. As your post points out, most of us don’t actually experience real silence, there is always some background noise. The anechoic chamber intrigues me, just to have that experience.

    1. I agree Heather. I think it would be difficult at first to be in complete silence but we arrived here in silence and will leave the earth the same way. Connecting to it regularly will help us leave this world in lightness I think. Thank you Heather have a great week 💚💕

    1. It’s funny, I couldn’t think of life without that steady diet of silence. It reveals so much in me, the good and the bad! It allows space in me to see what feels right or wrong and with practice, lots of it!! it helps me observe the chaos and the uncertainty, and teaches me to trust I will be supported along the way. It’s different for each one of us. Thank you Kristine 🌈💕

  7. Thank you for the post. Yes I too prefer silence to a noisy place, as I can reflex and gather my thoughts, in quiet places and find noisy places quite disturbing and distracting. Hope you are keeping well. Much Love and Light and May God Bless you 🙂 ❤

  8. Silence for me is the opportunity for my inner self to have a word. So much stimuli in the world occupying our attention our true self doesn’t get a turn.
    I work with audiologist’s and sometimes I will go into their testing booth and just sit. It may not be the quietest place in the world but it’s pretty amazing how quiet it can get. At times can be unnerving but usually those are the times I need it the most.

    Thank you, much gratitude for your post.

  9. Well written Karen, I so agree, and find great peace solace, spiritual and creative inspiration in silence. I love getting out in the bush where all I can hear is the wind and the birds and just commune with my Heavenly Dad. Thanks for sharing this helpful skill.

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