Gordon Hempton, acoustic ecologist, enlightens us on what it means to truly listen to our surroundings and to discover what it is that we hear that lets us know exactly where we are. He describes silence as not the absence of sound but rather the absence of noise from modern life. "Silence is the poetics of space; what it means to be in a place." True silence is almost impossible to find on earth with even remote natural areas affected by noise pollution. And yet the silence of the natural world connects us back to the land in a way that nurtures and enchants us.


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  • Monica Castillo

    Silence expands me.

  • Howie

    The central themes of how endangered sound is...that it's the unique sound of the land that makes us disappear...the poetry of space and the presence of everything that nurtures our nature. WOW! I going to be out in nature today and doing this in deeply. My refection of wonder is whether human have the superpower to listen beyond the noise to the sound. I am going to practice that today.

  • paul

    The quality of his voice, reverence. He illustrated silence in a cosmic dimention.

  • Tracy

    "The land IS speaking." "I think what I enjoy most about listening is that I disappear. I disappear." Gratitude.

  • Jane Weston

    When I truly listen I disappear. The edges of my physical body dissolve harmoniously. I feel at home.

  • Rachna

    Appreciation. Silence is the presence of nature and absence of I....In the early hours of the morning, silence surrounds and nourishes.

  • Liz

    When we managed to go camping or drive to "wilderness" for a few hours is the "poetic sounds of nature" (Gordon Hempton) that I am seeking to surrender. I immediately feel a state of joy, my thoughts dissipate, the Awe experienced through natural sounds deserve reverence.

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  • Learn more about Sanctuaries of Silence at the Global Oneness Project
  • Explore the work of Gordon Hempton at The Sound Tracker web site.
  • Find a quiet place in nature and really listen to the natural world around you.

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