Secret of Silence

I was going through some of my old writings and came across a journal entry I thought I’d share. This must have been around 2008.

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In all the speech that man may attempt to perfect, there seems to be none more difficult to master than that of the language of love. For if a man endeavors to speak of a treasured memory, to find words worthy of capturing a priceless moment shared with his lover, it is oft like digging for a rare diamond, a buried gem hidden amongst a vast field laden with miles of leaves, grass, dirt, and rubbish. There are no words to ever suffice the man, no speech capable of describing the depths of his love nor the heights of his emotions. He digs and he digs and he digs, but the words will always escape him. They would do nothing but fail in the moment of indescribable beauty.

On the other hand, if a man has been engaged in a quarrel with a loved one, speech is often used for his worse. It is much like him walking in a field of a thousand land mines, with each miscalculated step ready to set off an explosion, thus sending him to an imminent and ghastly death. In this dreadful war of attrition, it is as much a matter of avoiding speech as it is of finding it. Here words are dressed in the rags of your enemy, and the ammunition with which they are armed cry out more for your destruction than for peace. Choose the words carefully and even then, dear friend, you might have unknowingly opened yourself up for bitter and clever retaliation. It seems that here, speech would also fail us.

So what is the simple solution to all of this? It might be found in the oft-overlooked word of all: silence. As my girlfriend would put it, “Just be quiet.” And as we should all know by now, she always has smart things to say, doesn’t she?

Friends, never underestimate the power of silence when you find yourself sitting lovely with your mate in the Grand Canyon, lost beneath a big blanket of stars and sky that compels your souls to savor the moment with a quiet acknowledgement of each other and the beauty before you.  And never overlook the value that goes into being silent in a disagreement, when each contributing syllable is ready to spell out doom for you and your loved one.

As I might take the luxury to paraphrase a famous quote from author Aldous Huxley: “Silence is that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible.”

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