Sound of silence: They speak a thousand words

brain cuddle- sound of silence

Last evening around 7 while returning back from Jaipur, the sun was down, the moon softly peeked from the mountains, soft music played in the background, the warm and cold air softly touched my face and the moving tyres talking of the roads they had travelled. The sound of silence around.

At that moment, I realised that I wasn’t alone. He sat right next to me eyes softly closed and lost in his own thoughts. It had been over an hour since we had talked to each other. there was no tension, no anger, just pure respect for silence and privacy.

For a second I wondered if I should tap him and talk, but the happiness of the silence took over my thoughts and turned back to my thoughts.

It has been over 6 years and we understand each other well to know that silences are what keep us together. We enjoy being together and behave real crazy, but it is that moment of solitude that connects us to ourselves and thus we accept being with each other more.

I know it might sound a little weird to many, but that is the exact moment when I thought of writing this article as soon as I reach home. ‘ When Silence Speak a Thousand Words.

Who we are?

Commonly known as Homo Sapiens and individually by our specific name, we all have some traits that are common while many others that differentiate us from each other. No matter where you stay, what job you do, what language you speak we all have our strengths, weaknesses, our stabilities, fears, and our insecurities.

The one question that surrounds us always is how do we stop the constant mind chatter, become calmer, how focus and enjoy solitude. Well, the best way to do that is to enjoy the silence.

The Sound of Silence

I wish to hear the silence of the night, for the silence is something positive and to be heard.

Henry David Thoreau

Writer Katrina Goldsaito and illustrator Julia Kuo very beautifully explore the sound of silence in their book, where a little boy Yoshio, who amidst the bustle of Tokyo, awakens the beauty of silence and teaches himself this secret language.

sound of silence- brain cuddle

We live with the boy as he leaves home on a rainy morning and experiences the symphony of urban sounds surrounding the city

Raindrops pattering on his umbrella,
Boots squishing and squashing through the puddles.

Suddenly with Yoshio, we are instantly entranced by a sound that is truly amazing. He pursues it till he comes across a koto player fine-tuning her instrument.

Then the koto player played. The notes were twangy and twinkling; they tickled Yoshio’s ears! When the song finished, Yoshio said, “Sensei, I love sounds, but I’ve never heard a sound like that!”

sound of silence- brain cuddle

Then the koto player played. The notes were twangy and twinkling; they tickled Yoshio’s ears! When the song finished, Yoshio said, “Sensei, I love sounds, but I’ve never heard a sound like that!”

The koto player laughed, and it sounded like the metal bell that swayed in the wind in Mama’s garden.

Yoshi asks Sensei what her favourite sound is. He was astonished by the answer “The most beautiful sound, is the sound of ma, of silence.”

Puzzled by the answer He continues to look for silence at the dinner at the train station, at the dinner table, in the bath. At night too when everyone was asleep, he tried to hear the silence, but only heard the radio hum at distance.

The next day at school Yoshio reads a book and is transported to a different world.

sound of silence- brain cuddle

Suddenly, in the middle of a page, he heard it.
No sounds of footsteps, no people chattering, no radios, no bamboo, no kotos being tuned.
In that short moment, Yoshio couldn’t even hear the sound of his own breath. Everything felt still inside him. Peaceful, like the garden after it snowed. Like feather-stuffed futons drying in the sun.
Silence had been there all along.

He learns what we often forget: that quiet is the presence of an inward-listening awareness, an attunement of the mind’s ear, and an orientation of the spirit toward a certain inner calm — possibly the positive antidote to loneliness, which flourishes so often in the crowd.

Conclusion

We now live in a culture that progressively confuses loudness for authority, vociferousness for voice, and yelling for content, more than a century and a half later. We seem to have forgotten what Susan Sontag warned us half a century ago: that “silence is inextricably a form of speech,” that it has its own aesthetic, and that mastering it is one of life’s great skills.

I noticed in New York, where the traffic is so bad and the air is so bad … you get into a taxi and very frequently the poor taxi driver is just beside himself with irritation. And one day I got into one and the driver began talking a blue streak, accusing absolutely everyone of being wrong. You know he was full of irritation about everything, and I simply remained quiet. I did not answer his questions, I did not enter into a conversation, and very shortly the driver began changing his ideas and simply through my being silent he began, before I got out of the car, saying rather nice things about the world around him.

John cage