“The more you realize, the more you realize there is nothing to realize,” she said. “The idea that there’s somewhere we have got to get to, and something we have to attain, is our basic delusion.”
Edward Abbey, in Desert Solitaire, a chronicle of two six-month stints as a ranger in Utah’s Arches National Monument, said that being solitary for a long time and fully attuned to the natural world “means risking everything human.” Those who fear this will feel only loneliness, the pain of social isolation, rather than experiencing solitude, which can be by turns exhilarating and turbulent.
Silence, it appears, is not the opposite of sound. It is another world altogether, literally offering a deeper level of thought, a journey to the bedrock of the self.