I was watching a favorite show of mine the other night, Northern Exposure, and in this particular episode one of the main characters loses his voice. He later laments the loss of his voice by quoting Voltaire -- I believe it was this quote: "Poetry is the music of the soul, and, above all, of great and feeling souls" -- and, taking it further, by saying that the voice is the bridge to other people's souls, that without it we are alone in this world.
This struck me as a sad and typical view. It could be interpreted as saying that the souls of introverts are shut off from others. At the least, it portrays being alone as an undesirable thing. But why must it be undesirable? It can be wonderful! Also, there are other routes to the souls of others. There are many ways to communicate and there are far worse things than not being able to speak to people. In fact, it could be said that many of the troubles in life occur because we speak too much!
Anyway, I haven't written in a while and I figured I'd jot down these simple thoughts. Nothing serious. I'll try getting into more of a groove here.
I agree. Talking is completely overrated. I once went on a ski vacation and met a woman in my lesson group from Japan. She didn't speak a word of English and I didn't speak any Japanese. When she would fall down, I would ski over, smile and help her up. She would do the same for me. We would demonstrate different techniques to each other and learned from one another. We would laugh when each of us took a goofy spill and shared lunch together every day that week. We showed each other pictures of our families and went shopping together. By the end of the trip I would absolutely call this person my friend and neither of us had spoken one word to each other. So I'm with you, the voice is certainly not the only bridge to other people's souls. Great blog!
I completely agree.
The character's thoughts are interesting considering that they seem to ignore the fact that the primary mode of delivery of poetry is through the written word, which requires no voice.
Claiming that voice is the sole window to the soul (which the character does by claiming that "without it we are alone") is quite insulting to artists, sculptors, writers, programmers, engineers, and even athletes. --CLS
Anon #1, that's a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing it. You've illustrated my point much better than I did.
CLS, yes, true. I think that the best communication sometimes comes in small packages, with few words, or without any words at all. Even a simple drawing with stick figures can convey a wonderful message and make me happy.
Beautiful. Just beautiful. I came to this blog feeling so anxious and 'beside myself', wondering what's wrong with me. Turns out the only thing wrong was that I forgot what a beautiful thing it is to be silent and alone, to be an introvert. Thank you.
AmongTheRuins, exactly! I'm glad I'm not the only one seeing it.
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