How many of us remember this scene from “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas”? More than anything, what the Grinch seems to dread most about the Whos in Whoville is the noise they will be making on Christmas Day.
As a musician and composer, I strongly believe in the language of music. Instrumental music, specifically, lends itself to creating a space for you to explore your soul and be carried away to a place where you can reflect or imagine. Yet even as beautiful as music can be, it can still contribute to the noise.
There is another language that can be even more powerful than the language of music. That is the language of silence.
I have to confess: I’m in a personal season of being drowned by too much noise. We have a TV in nearly every room of our house. My iPhone is either in my pocket, in my hand, or on my desk the entire time I’m awake. Alerts and reminders chirp constantly – not just on my phone, but on my iPad and on my computer. Email never stops and Text/Facebook messages chime through multiple times per hour, all day, every day. These unintentionally violate any rhythm or routine I have, demanding a response. At the same time this is happening to me, I hear it happening all around me with my family, co-workers, and friends.
The discipline of silence is practically lost in this society. Even if we forced ourselves into a time of silence, I believe that we’re likely afraid of what we’ll hear. That’s right…hear.
In silence, we begin to hear … many times, the words and thoughts that have been trying to speak to us for weeks, months, perhaps even years. Dreams. Ideas. Affirmations. Direction. All masked by the incessant noise in our lives.