Silence is a valuable commodity
It’s silly really, to say that silence is a trend at all, let alone a new one. Seeking peace goes back to biblical times, and likely before then too. There’s no denying that it’s part of human nature to want to be social and listen to music and be part of the hustle, but there always has to be balance. When stimuli becomes overwhelming, it’s also in our nature to want to shut it all out. Silence has great value. Ask anyone with Tinnitus. Without those moments of utter peace and quiet, life can become extremely irritating, affecting our mood, concentration levels and ability to be happy.
Modern society, with it’s endless entourage of noisy creations, is getting those with influence to realise the great benefits of natural silence. Celebrities everywhere just can’t get enough of quiet retreats, meditation and yoga. It’s not surprising either, and due to the increasing level of constant noise in towns and cities worldwide, the promise of ‘quiet’ has become somewhat of a luxury. When we talk about natural silence, it’s not referring to the absence of sound entirely, but the absence of man-made noise pollution. As it happens, the complete absence of decibels is just as annoying as too much noise, taking us to the other end of the spectrum. This has been tested in anechoic chambers, as explored by Derek Muller on his science-oriented YouTube channel Veritasium:
People have paid hefty sums, travelling far and wide to experience this echoless chamber, and discover what true silence really feels like. That in itself is a pretty good testament to just how intriguing and appealing silence really is, and perhaps how desperate normal people are for it. If you’ve ever been immersed in nature, up in the mountains or out in the plains where the only sounds are the rustle of grass and leaves, or the birds and bees met with perhaps the distant lull of a stream… Then you know just how pleasant and healing those surroundings can be. To just be for a length of time without the sound of electronic hums and whirrs, no car engines or busy footsteps, voices or sirens demanding your attention. Just nature’s silence.
It’s becoming increasingly rare to find places that don’t carry the sound of modernisation; Industrial, electrical, loud, constant. We may not even realise it, but our senses can easily become overloaded, leading to increased irritability, anxiety and fatigue. Our mind becomes tired of the non-stop input of unnatural frequencies, and gears us towards cutting out the noise. This is mainly due to the fact that noise and other stimuli work to keep us attentive, which uses up energy. That’s why we sleep best in a dark, quiet room, because it allows our mind to shut down and retreat into resting mode. Even musicians, with their entire careers revolving around sound, know that sometimes we just need to switch it all off. The band Switchfoot in fact, put it perfectly in their track “Adding to the Noise,” which is the good kind of ironic.
If we’re adding to the noise
turn off this song
If we’re adding to the noise
turn off your stereo, radio, video
Silence is the new holiday destination
An escape from modernisation and a chance to get in touch with the basics again, is being seen as more of a luxurious vacation than a basic need. Just like we need to eat, sleep, bathe and take exercise… We also need to get away from the busyness from time to time, and all the noise it causes. City dwellers can become so bombarded with stimuli, that they pay to surrender all and unplug for weeks on end. There are actual silent retreats in remote parts of the world, where people pay to be quiet for anywhere from a day, to a week, and even as much as a couple of months. These silent spa destinations, resorts and sanctuary’s are kind of hardcore, requiring you to surrender your phone at check-in. They aim to create and uphold the silence of nature, encouraging scenarios where you can’t plug-in, even if you wanted to.
In essence, what they offer is a digital detox. Take, for example, Dosen’s Silent Mind Retreat, on an island off Croatia where you are taught breathing techniques as you hike and “observe your mind.” The founder created this retreat with one simple goal: “To bring stillness to the soul.” Others, like Spirit Rock Meditation Center in West Marin, California, offer various stay options that involve walking meditations in the woods. (A week-long stay will set you back around $1470.)
Though it’s true, silence is golden, quiet is valuable and nature is healing, it shouldn’t have such a high price. So the challenge is set. Find the quietest spot in nature closest to where you live, and visit it as often as you need. Be still in it, eat in it, walk, think, swim, hike, meditate. Whatever you choose to do, just be for a while, unplugged and undisturbed. Allowing yourself to notice nature’s silence, unwind and restore the balance.
You might also like: “4 healing destinations for the solo traveller”
Master your thoughts and help others to do the same!
Here at The School of Natural Health Sciences, we offer a diploma correspondence course in Mindfulness, Meditation, CBT, Neuro-Linguistics Programming, Stress Management and Professional Relaxation Therapy. These are fundamental qualifications for understanding and identifying thought patterns, and knowing what to do to change them.
We’re honoured to have trained over 40,000 therapists over the last 20 years, with our wide range of holistic therapy distance learning courses that allow the student to create their own world of study.
- View our A-Z Holistic Therapy Course list
- Check out our outrageous 20th anniversary offers
- View our worldwide accreditations
Contact us for more information. We’d love to hear from you!