I think I could totally be silent the rest of my life. I’m silent 90% of the time now. My high school used to do a day of silence every year to raise awareness for abortion. I loved that day. Some people struggle not to talk, but I loved it. Silence makes me calm. And I’m just used to it. As a child I was extremely shy and rarely talked. High school brought me out of my shell, but now in college I feel like my quiet childhood self again.
Words don’t always work so well for me. Seems ironic since I’m a Communication major. I just prefer silence. I think better on my own. I like to find a place to sit where I can just be quiet and reflect. One of my favorite things about this campus is being able to do that.
Right now, for example, I am sitting on the terrace behind the student center that overlooks all the fountain/ponds. I came here because I was so upset I was on the verge of tears multiple times within the past hour and a half. I could have called my mom or a friend back home to talk about it, but I knew that wouldn’t help. Instead, as I was walking back to my dorm, I decided it would be nice to just sit outside in the beautiful weather and listen to the water.
If you consider the “sacred” to be inner peace, than I truly believe silence is the best way to interact with the sacred. Not total absence of all sound. But absence of words and verbal communication.
I am most at peace when I am outside. I love the smell of fresh, crisp air on a cool night. I love the sound of running water; like these fountains. I think part of the reason I fell in love with this school is because from the first time I visited and saw all the fountains and the beautiful campus, I felt at peace. I could just picture myself sitting outside on nights like this.
I think I always pictured myself sitting outside with someone though. Not talking, just sitting enjoying the sounds and the air together. Sharing this inner peace with someone. It’s a beautiful thing to be so close with someone that you can just be together and enjoy silence. I don’t have someone like that here yet. But I really wish I did.
One of my other favorite things is instrumental guitar music. I have loved the guitar since I was probably 4. I remember begging my parents for a guitar for Christmas that year, and I was overjoyed when I unwrapped one on Christmas morning. The sounds of a guitar bring me inner peace. My high school best friend was a passionate and gifted guitarist. We first met because he was playing guitar in the lobby of our high school as I walked out of my school play audition. You know how people talk about “love at first sight?” Well it actually, totally, legitimately was. We clicked right away. I truly believe it was because both of us felt such a strong passion for and connection to guitar deep in our souls. That sounds so cheesy. But we would hang out after school for hours and he would play guitar and i would just listen. We spent hours and days doing just that. We were at peace together. We didn’t need to talk. We just shared that special silence accompanied by whatever he was feeing through his guitar. Even now when I need to calm down or relax or focus, I turn on my instrumental guitar music playlist. It helps me find an inner peace that nothing else can give me. Not talking to my mom or my best friend or my boyfriend. Just silence and some good guitar.
I would never want to be isolated and alone for the rest of my life, but I definitely think I could be silent. There is some special peace that comes from silence. And sometimes after being silent for a while I don’t want to talk at all. Eventually I have to and it just feels unnatural. Its like all my clarity flows right out of my mouth and into the air and it’s gone.
I have always considered myself Catholic. Its how I was raised, i went through 13 years of Catholic school, I go to mass every week, I pray before bed and randomly throughout the day. Faith is a big part of my life. But my favorite aspect of my faith is prayer. It all goes back to silence. I like to sit silently, whether in my room before bed, or with a congregation at mass, and just be alone with my thoughts. I love to physically share the moment with other people, but the silence is where I find my peace. Sometimes I wonder if I should explore other religions more focused on silence, meditation and inner peace. I wonder if there are beliefs that suit my soul more fittingly.
Silence is a powerful thing. Some people can’t imagine how they would survive in silence. If silence means o could not talk, I think I could do it. Just let me sit outside near some running water and trees, let me be somewhere where I can look up at night and see the stars, let me be somewhere where I can hear or play guitar, and I think I could totally go without talking.
If inner peace is sacred, silence is definitely my vehicle. Looking outside my Catholic views of God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit, I definitely believe that silence and the inner peace and clarity that I find in it is sacred.