Society

Silence is Expensive

  • 'Silence is a source of great strength’
  • ‘Silence isn’t empty, it is full of answers.’
  • ‘Silence speaks when words can’t.’
  • ‘Words can satisfy your mind but silence satisfies your soul.’
  • ‘Saying nothing says sometimes most.’

These are just a few quotes on ‘Silence’ and nevertheless, there are plenty which speak ‘loudly’ of its greatness.

But, in our country, I find we uniformly loathe silence. It is good or bad, happiness or failure, devotion or dislike, knowledge or ignorance. Think of anything in life with the opposite, we prefer to exhibit them not with silence; with noise only; that too on many occasions with great noise in high decibels.

I find even in my flat, people who I think to be pious want to show it by playing devotional songs loudly in their homes with preferably open doors so that others become aware of it. The temple festivals one need not have to tell. Marriages are places for maximum chatter and noise. On death, though not in the upper class, people of lower and poor class indulge in great emotional scenes!

I think that is the reason why the older generation cannot stay long with their children abroad, because they will be facing deafening silence only most of the time in foreign countries. I have also come across persons who are very silent and calm and some, once started talking, cannot stop. Though we classify it as their personal trait I find it quite disconcerting, to say honestly.

I accept that man is, after all, a social animal. He needs people around him to express love, affection, attention, care, sympathy, appreciation, anger, fight and whatnot in some form or other. Noise seems to be one way of drawing attention. So they never miss even the ‘smallest’ opportunity to make ‘biggest’ noise. Ahem, our media also adds more fuel to this practice.

One popular axiom comes to my mind (though used in a different context); ‘Silence is Golden.’ Probably, that is why it is ‘expensive’ in India.

08-Jan-2022

More by :  G Swaminathan

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