Silence may seem at first glance like an odd thing for a music therapist, but silence is a part of music. My husband is a composer. He states it takes just as much time to write a rest as a note in a piece of music. The rest (the silence) is just as important as the note (the sound).
As a therapist, there are times for sound and times for silence in a session. I work with a variety of people with a variety of diagnoses. They have a variety of life experiences. They have taught me much as we experience sound and silence together. I am a person who supports tolerance and awareness. I view my life as an experience of learning from others no matter their ability or where they live. Everyone is capable of positive contributions to life. To learn from and about others, we must take the time to listen and to process. We must experience sound and silence.
April 12th is Day of Silence. This is a great day to address a variety of issues that may affect your life or others around you.
- Internet sources indicate this day started in 1996 by a student desiring safety for all students regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
- Consider that too much noise can result in hearing loss. Taking time to turn off the radios, the phones, as many noises as we can is important. Rest your ears.
- Too much sensory input can stress us as humans. Researchers are studying how sensory overload affects us. (Put the term “research on effects of sensory overload” into a Google Scholar search and you get links to 33,200 articles.) Mediation, decreasing visual clutter, and exercise appear to be steps you can begin to take to help lessen your stress.
- And, there are those with conditions like autism whose brains process sensory input in a different way. April is considered Autism Awareness Month in many parts of the world. (You can learn more about the purpose of this month by clicking here to see this message from the United Nations.) There is a movement to change the name to Autism Acceptance.
I leave you with a Simon & Garfunkel‘s “The Sound of Silence”. Take a moment to enjoy the sound of this song and then enjoy some silence.