Today, I tried to make a conscious effort to be silent, and to recognize the beauty in silence. I wanted to learn how to be quiet in the midst of a noisy world.

I tried, and I failed. In fact, it made me feel extremely frustrated.

First, there was the loud, constant pounding of a jackhammer at a construction site. Followed by the jarring metallic drone of the fruit-juice extractor thingamajig at the hawker centre. Then high-pitched, overly-excited yakky tourists at the train station. Arggh… the list goes on!!

Everything I heard today was amplified, and it reminded me of a scene in Man of Steel, when Clark Kent aka Superman, had to condition his ears to only hear what he wanted to hear. He needed to practice the discipline of shutting out all superfluous noise, just to hear the one voice that needs to be heard.

This evening, I heard an interesting fundraising idea by a volunteer with Room to Read. He shared that John Wood, the founder of Room to Read, wanted students to raise funds to help other students. He challenged students in schools to a “sponsored silence”, where they will head home and tell their parents that they want to be silent to raise funds, and for every hour of silence, their parents will donate $10 – $20.

People say that silence is golden, and I truly agree with them. In fact, the “noise” that we make often cause people to misunderstand us. I am definitely guilty of shooting my mouth off before thinking of the consequences.

I might impose a “sponsored silence” on myself. Let’s see how that goes! 😐

Aaron