The Sound of Silence

Merry Christmas! Happy New Year!

We laughed. We celebrated. We cheered. And we should have. It was a season of joy and festivity. Friends, family and food.

In great abundance.

A season of parties, people and places to be.

It’s January. We’ve stepped off the merry-go-round, but our head is still spinning. Feeling a bit tired. Both inside and out. Time to schedule a new season.

To stop.

Bernie Krause is an American musician and ecologist. He concentrated almost exclusively on the recording of wild natural soundscapes from around the world gathering more than 5,000 hours of recordings of over 15,000 individual species, marine and terrestrial. It is an orchestra of sounds.

Just 10 years later, Bernie has returned to those same places. The difference is startling. Sadly, over half of these habitats are now either altogether silent or can no longer be heard in any of their original form.

An unseen toll that human-generated noise has exacted on the natural world.

We have upset the balance of things. Wildlife has become stressed because of our noise.

Are we humans any different?

Traffic. Television. Tablets. When we manage to find a rare moment without distraction we cover it. With stuff.

Too much noise in our life adds stress. A disconnect. Even if it is good noise.

Just as Bernie notices when one particular breed of bird stops singing – do we notice the absence of the Spirit trying to speak?

There are new paths waiting for us. Quiet whispers of direction. Promptings to get our attention. And tender mercies await. Are you listening?

We cannot fully escape to the wilderness to live. But we can make time in our lives to find silence. Where will you go?

The mountains. A walk. A chair by the window. The temple.

Find your place.

It’s time to bring some balance back. To focus on ourselves. And Him. Calendar just a few minutes of your day to do …

Nothing.

Time to pull away from the noise that man makes. And into the noise that God made.

A place to hear nothing.

And everything.