It seems that part of my summer this year has included the gift of loud noise in many aspects. Teaching at Kripalu there was construction noise everywhere, being back home on the West Coast I am more aware of loud motorcycles, trains, and construction sounds.

More and more I find myself irritated by these overpowering sounds. In a recent article I read entitled Silence's Loud Goodbye the author commented how the word 'noise' itself is derived from the latin root nausea.

It seems that it is getting harder and harder to find outdoor places with out any noise pollution but indoor noise is also becoming an issue. From the hum of refrigerators to electronic gadgets even our homes have become loud spaces.

Ecologist Gordon Hempton invites us to contemplate the idea that 'silence' is not with out frequency but instead "the complete absence of all audible mechanical vibrations, leaving only the sounds of nature at her most natural. Silence is the presence of everything, undisturbed."

As challenging as it might be to fit into busy schedules take time to get out to places with less mechanical vibration and if you are up for an adventure take a trip to the quietest place in America, Olympic National Park in Washington State.

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