Society is geared to respond to sound. To pick up cues for their entry into conversation, often layering personal comments over those of a companion. Interrupting one another and oneself. Call waiting, the modern brother of a kid tugging at his mom’s sleeve while she chats with a neighbour on the phone.
CD’s can be purchased not just of music but of background noise. Traffic, nature, the general bustle of life provides a sound track for our existence.
In this busy atmosphere silence gets little respect. It is labelled awkward, icy or dead. The song “Sound of Silence” by Simon and Garfunkel highlights themes of isolation, lack of communication and lack of intimacy. Likewise when we approach God and hear silence it is often misconstrued as getting a celestial cold shoulder.