Why Silence Is A Luxury

· January 29, 2018

Who’d have thought that being in silence could actually become a luxury? And it’s a luxury that very few people enjoy. We can only enjoy being in silence if we learn to escape from the routines that prevent us from having time for ourselves. These routines enslave us and make us fear loneliness and total silence.

Our surroundings are so noisy that we’ve adapted so we think being alone and in silence is something negative. Silence can even cause people to feel anxious.  So we understand what the implications of this type of fear are it’s wise to ask ourselves certain questions.

Without realizing it, we avoid being silent in a conscious way. We look for noise even when we have the opportunity to get away from it. We should ask ourselves why we are so afraid of silence. Why do we feel alone if there is no noise around us?

Do we put the radio on when we’re alone because we can’t stand there being no noise? Do we tend to go to busy, lively places because the loneliness and quietness of our home torments us? It would never even occur to people who do this to go to yoga or to meditate. It would be far too stressful to be still and totally silent!

Our mind needs silence

The truth is that achieving this silence is not an easy task and bringing a little silence into our routine can be quite a complicated challenge. Many of our desires, aspirations or interests exist where there is noise. Whether an external or internal noise, it is like an incessant stream of thoughts that never seems to end.

There have been numerous studies on this topic. Most of them compare the lives of people living in large cities to those who live in rural areas. The differences are staggering. People who live or work in very noisy places and those who go to sleep listening to the endless hustle and bustle of the city are more likely to suffer certain health problems.

Man sitting in silence

Issues with the circulatory system, stress, and anxiety are some of these problems. If we look for the main causes of these conditions, we’ll often find they are due to the fact we just don’t stop and relax. Our autopilot, after years and years of acting in the same way, is used to jumping from one stimulus to another.

Silence is not uncomfortable and being silent shouldn´t make us nervous. These are just beliefs that try to justify something that we don’t want to experience. What exactly are we afraid of?

However, our mind needs to be silent. Only thanks to the absence of noise can our neurons grow effectively. In addition, our minds and bodies relax and free us from the worries that are usually an accumulation of problems and tensions caused by outside noise. When there is noise, we can’t hear ourselves think; and if this happens we quite simply don´t have a clear and lucid mind.

Noise and agitation takes us away from ourselves

We’re told that “noise and restlessness take us away from ourselves”. Who among us dedicates time to get to know themselves? How many of us dedicate a few minutes of our lives each day to meditation or prayer to calm our minds and relax. How many of us try to deal with the thoughts that we often try to ignore? Or manage those harmful and insidious thoughts that are so intrusive and cause such discomfort? It’s a complicated situation. There are so many urgent tasks to deal with, and time for ourselves can always be postponed for later…

Also, being silent is much more than practicing meditation or just emptying our minds. This is a totally misguided belief. The idea is to stop living on autopilot and enjoy living the moment a lot more. We don’t need to do anything particularly special. Just enjoying a good meal, appreciating its flavors, and enjoying the sound of the birds as we walk is enough.

Ducks flying in sunset

Are we living or existing?

This is what living is all about. Being constantly surrounded by noise isn’t real living, it’s just existence. And what are we existing for? Just to do what we have to do, without really enjoying it. We don’t look after ourselves or spoil ourselves enough. Nor do we give ourselves the importance we deserve. We’re usually just guided by motives, reasons, and causes that are often not our own, and that come from the outside.

“Some find silence unbearable because they have too much noise within themselves”

-Robert Fripp-

Let’s not run away from silence. Why not turn off the television and open a book? Why not exercise in the park without listening to music? In our daily lives, we’re subject to constant noise. Why do we continue to be at the mercy of this noise when we finally have time for ourselves? Are we scared to connect with ourselves and the world around us? What are we trying to escape from?