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comment by GingerSoul
GingerSoul  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Ask Hubski: Altered states of being -

I feel different to everyone else here, I don't listen to music or do any activity at all, I love silence, I can stay in a "disconnected from the real world" state for hours without doing anything at all.

If I feel depressed my solution is different, I write, I love writing when I'm depressed and it always makes me feel better.

thenewgreen  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yeah... but do you really love silence? Because true silence can be very disconcerting.

edit: That podcast is when I officially realized that flagamuffin is awesome. I love that section.

mknod  ·  1472 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Okay so I gotta comment on this.

First off it was a great podcast, and I had a lot of fun listening to everyone's ideas. I took notes during it concerning my thoughts and feelings because I value quiet and silence a lot.

Okay so I hope its okay to go through these notes here while they are still fresh!

Ear plugs. I wear ear plugs. Not just to bed, walking around my house I wear ear plugs. My wife (who currently is in China) likes to have background noise, she likes the television on, having a podcast going or music.

I also enjoy those things, but only for an allocated period of time and only when I can pay attention to them.

I wear earplugs because I feel so overwhelmed by the sounds around me all the time that I often become very emotionally distressed and irritable at constant noise. Even with my wife away, I wear them around because I find the sound of the motor on our refrigerator grating, and now that winter has started, our forced air furnace is a monster waiting to push against my ear drum.

kleinbl00 put a nice little thought in there about how people like to use sound to feel safe and secure. Evolutionarily he might be very correct. But if we couldn't hear, would we be more afraid? Birds in particular for his example are nice because they use hearing as a primary sense.

But is that the reason that so many people are uncomfortable with silence?

I think it's only part of the story. I think people are uncomfortable with being by themselves and this to some extent leads them to want noise as a distraction from having to confront that.

Which brings me to the next point. Quiet in groups.

People should be quiet in groups more often. They should try to stare into someone else's eyes while not saying any words. They should try to communicate without using grand gestures. When you practice doing this it becomes quite interesting, you start to realize that emotions are very easy to communicate, but objects and verbs are very difficult. Being quiet in a group, and practicing it actively helps (at least me) be more empathetic.

When mk was talking about the vast middle of America and how quiet it could be all I could think about was my time in Alaska. There are places there and times where of course there would be sound, but it was ambient and slow and always in the background. It was wonderful some nights to go outside the village and look at the northern lights and reflect upon the moments that lead one to look at those lights. Now that I am back in a larger civilization, it's very jarring sometimes to even go to dinner and have a bunch of television sets and music at volumes exceeding those that we'd be able to have a conversation at. I would rather not go out if it means that I am going to be subjected to so much non-interactive stimuli.

Anyway, I have typed this entirely in a room with no lights on and put my ear plugs back in but I wanted to just throw in a bit of a different perspective of someone who actively seeks out silence and quiet. I hope it adds something to someone somewhere :D.

flagamuffin  ·  1485 days ago  ·  link  ·  

God this has a new and depressing spin on it now that I have allergies that cause my ears to ring when it's quiet.

Medication has yet to help.

Possiblywrong  ·  1484 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Try this

Results may vary/I am not a doctor/see username

GingerSoul  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Yes really, I have everything in silence (computer, phone) and I love this moment of the night when I can't hear a single sound.

Edit: I'm not as weird as you think, I like to listen to music sometimes but I don't do it very often (maybe less than 5 times per month).

thenewgreen  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

per your edit: I don't think it's weird at all to appreciate and crave quiet. Quiet means there is a lack of noise, but silence means there IS NO noise. We all crave quiet from time to time. Some more than others, but there is definitely nothing "weird" about that. Check out the video, it's one I'm proud of. I think it turned out well and you in particular are the ideal audience for it.

GingerSoul  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I wish I could understand spoken English better, I still can't watch videos in English and understand them.

thenewgreen  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Ah, but you can hear things still. As kleinbl00 mentions in that podcast, your body puts off about 15 DB's of sound, just due to breathing/heart pumping etc. We are never in true silence. If we were, it wouldn't be comforting, it would be startling. I have never experienced an anechoic chamber, but I would like to just so I can appreciate sound more for it's orienting nature.

GingerSoul  ·  1486 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I would like experience an anechoic chamber too, I know I'm never in complete silence but I like that almost silence that I can experience at night.

randomuser  ·  1485 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Most people don't do very well,mentally, for long in there. Once you can hear the blood pumping through your veins I guess shit gets weird.

GingerSoul  ·  1484 days ago  ·  link  ·  

I know they don't, I would like to discover how much time I can be there without going crazy.