We've isolated some of our favorite narrative sound treatments included in this radio show and podcast. Listen in (we strongly encourage headphones or earbuds!) as we pair these soundscapes with reflective passages and photos.
Gordon Hempton says that silence is an endangered species. He defines real quiet as presence — not an absence of sound, but an absence of noise. The Earth, as he knows it, is a "solar-powered jukebox." Quiet is a "think tank of the soul." We take in the world through his ears.
Through the sounds of the Hoh Rain Forest in Olympic National Park, Hempton guides us on an aural hike to One Square Inch of Silence.
Poke your head inside this giant driftwood log and experience a "surf symphony in the wild" as the surf plucks the wood fibers and cause them to vibrate like the strings of a violin.
An aural journey across three zones — from the Amazon and Central America to the temperate latitudes of the Great Northwest. The difference in silence will astound you.
Taken from his recordings of dawn in the Midwest U.S., Gordon Hempton uses this condensed audio to help people practice true listening in wide, open space.
Sounds of Silence
"More than ever before, we need to fall back in love with the land. Silence is our meeting place. To experience the soul-swelling wonder of silence, you must hear it."
A lyrical essay in which Gordon Hempton reminds the reader of what we can find inside ourselves through nature and how it makes us better listeners too. A must-read.
Pertinent Posts from the On Being Blog
A magical description of the primordial silences of people and places outside urban corridors by Taline Voskeritchian.
A series of portraits of Buddhist monks in silence from a 1966 doc by Arnaud Desjardins.
A Twitterscript recap of our interview with the man who is trying to preserve the last quiet places.
About the Image
Voices on the Radio
Host/Producer: Krista Tippett
Senior Editor: Trent Gilliss
Technical Director/Producer: Chris Heagle
Senior Producer: David McGuire
Associate Producer: Nancy Rosenbaum
Associate Producer/Online: Susan Leem
Associate Web Developer: Anne Breckbill
Coordinating Producer: Stefni Bell
Poetry is something many of us seem to be hungry for these days. We're hungry for fresh ways to tell hard truths and redemptive stories, for language that would elevate and embolden rather than demean and alienate. Elizabeth Alexander shares her sense of what poetry works in us — and in our children — and why it may become more relevant, not less so, in hard and complicated times.
Joanna Macy is a philosopher of ecology, a Buddhist scholar, and an exquisite translator of the poetry of Rainer Maria Rilke. We take that poetry as a lens on her wisdom on spiritual life and its relevance for the political and ecological dramas of our time.