Here is a challenge for you. See if you can find a perfectly silent place. No ringing, no cars, trains, electric hums, commercials, elevator music, notifications, air conditioning, drip or conversations.
There are moments at night, when cars aren’t passing our home, when it gets completely silent just for a few moments. It is deafening. There is no noise to distract, to stimulate or entertain. And the sound of the still might as well be a jet engine.
Outside of noise I’m very uncomfortable because my soul only becomes more bare and audible in that silence. Any fear, passion, dream or challenge I’ve been able to wash down with noise is now confronting me…not rudely…but appropriately with the utmost patience.
Before the digital age noise like we experience with songs, movies, television, books, articles, pictures and social media was a luxury. Silence was for the masses. Now noise is for the masses, everyone is entertained (maybe even pacified and controlled by it). But silence and solitude is for the self reliant…the free of soul. Noise is the foolishness of the crowd and silence is the wisdom of those awake.
For us struggling to find direction, purpose, vision, meaning or our identity…may I prescribe a painful dose of silence? It isn’t more input that we need but less. It isn’t more advice, self help, sermons or methods we need but to have clarity on the condition of our hearts.
I call this type of silence a luxury.