Opinion: The Sound of Silence

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Are you thinking of Simon and Garfunkel's song? I do, too, when I hear the phrase "the sound of silence." However, it is not to that which I refer. It is to the literal meaning of the phrase that I find interesting. I hold the belief that no one who is capable of hearing has ever heard silence.  Whenever one refers to silence, one often refers to the lack of human communication, or some such noise. It is in a sense identical to being alone. Literally, no one is ever alone as long as they continue to share this world with others. Hence there is never silence when nature  and man-made things remain loquacious. Even the floors creak.

It is just so with silence. Even when all is quite, the wind might whistle, the leaves rustle, the cars zoom, the rain pitter-patters.  For example, it is now 11:26pm in Queens, New York as I write this. Everybody in my home is asleep but me. The fan overhead is squeaking gently. I just heard a door close somewhere. The very annoying neighbor of mine is at it again: moving  furniture and producing a most unpleasant screeching sound. The clock is ticking. The pressure of my fingers on the keys are creating those little soft sounds that I enjoy so much. Oh, I hear voices from outside the window now...

It seems to me that silence will not have a sound. It would probably be eerily and bleed the ears as they strain to hear. It would be most strange to feel silence; surely that must be the only way to know silence, by feeling. What would the ears pickup when there is nothing at all to be picked?

Happy Monday
-J


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