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  • Writer's pictureMrinal Bahukhandi

HALCYON - The Science of Silence.

Updated: Apr 20, 2021


While delving into the subject of silence, this writing shall attempt an oxymoron, to talk about it.

We could once hear the grass grow! Needles from pine trees would fall on dry leaves to make a sound as loud as thunder, in clear of the forest. Yet, insects did not hear this event because, for them, it didn’t really make a sound. The human body, however, was an instrument of the soul, where listening was not limited to the auditory perception. A combination of sight, taste, touch and olfaction would concentrate at the pre-frontal cortex to complete a circuit that chimed with the soul-clock and let us eavesdrop on the enchanting secret that nature hides so well. The imagery was just functionary, the visual maya did not trick the sapient mind that was adept at defeating Mara and transcending the endless chain of life. The sound was supreme and silence pristine, punctuated by nature in a way, that birds sing the morning chorus, praising the sun and reciting tales of an epoch gone by.

Yet, insects did not hear this event because for them, it didn’t really make a sound.

Silence is rooted in deep thought. Further, beyond the mirage of thoughts, there it lies, “bhramhr” the cosmic sound emulated as Aum by Humans. The idiom of silence is a hyper-syllable, uniting all vowels, a vibrating hum encrypted within the soul, floating in nothingness, mocking the transient time, reflecting the true nature of nature. Mused to be the sound of a conch, many who had experienced this sound, were called “brahman” or the awakened one, who praxised “Arya Maun” or “Absolute Silence” making no communication by means of speech, writings or even gestures. Thought was a relay and not a race. In such silence resided the soul that was weightless.

Bhramhr - The cosmic sound emulated as Aum

Silence is smiling in music.

“Fait Lux”, then God said, “Let there be Light”.

For light to manifest, God himself had to break the “Arya Mauna” first.

But all he spoke aloud, was the word Aum, he was chanting forever.

We infer this biblical analogy.

Silence is not broken by the beats of a tabla players’ fingers tap-dancing on parchment stretched on wood. She is the muse embellished by notes etched on a staff notation. Music, like knowledge, is conceivably the manipulation of calm – splitting silence through a prism to hear a vivid rainbow, the energy produced upon splitting an atom, the blank mind of an artist inspiring her imagination and aiding its manifestation. In breaking silence lies the hidden knowledge gained by preserving such calm.

But why is it essential to transmit this knowledge and in attempting to do so, interrupt this silence? Why am I staining this blank piece of page? Isn’t there a way to be contained and yet, be able to express? Why is there prose when there can be poetry?

A conscious fluttering mind connected to an elaborate sensorial network working through our body - a vehicle for the restless soul in urgency to broadcast everything that crosses the mind. Why does speech dominate a discussion? To know what we do not know thus far? To learn what we know already or to unlearn? Do we not already know, that time & space are both seemingly infinite because they are both moving in a looping spiral? That time and space that are infinitely outside of themselves, as also infinite within? That the micro and the macro is a reflection of one another? That a cat is a feline monkey and an eagle is a fuzzy bear? That everything is a reflection of the other and we are not separated by bodies but connected by souls that emerged from the same mass that was once singular. Why are we not in an eternal state of bliss or sivananda, where the soul is perpetually listening to and humming the song of existence?

Gossip is, that we break silence echoing her many reminders – the rumbling of a glacier, gurgling of a rivulet, distortion of a waterfall, a ripple of a river, waves of an ocean, thunderous clouds and the spattering rain.

But still, why must we limit our knowledge to human interpretations? Aren't the birds, the bees and the trees wiser than we are? Are we not always in awe of what they do so diligently well? Isn’t it enchanting, their ability to hear vibrations beyond the capabilities of human acuteness? Birds, animals and trees alike. Like in, The Sound Machine (a short story by Roald Dahl), is it not true that every living form is like an artist, a gatekeeper of truth, who sing the true-verse in unimaginable languages and frequencies unknown to us?

The Sound Machine (a short-story by Roald Dahl).

Melodic life is found easily in a bucolic life where secrets are unravelled daily by the magical appearance of dew-drops every morning. All we have to do, is to listen, because it is only with the heart, that one can see rightly. And it is only in silence, that we can listen to the heart.


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Sep 09, 2018

The science of silence. Heavy stuff Mrinal but brilliant & true - “Only in silence can we listen to the heart”

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