Reflecting on Silence

So, I did a week of tracking “Silence”. This is a hard one for me because your ability to avoid trivial conversation is constantly bombarded by others. In order to be a social person, you have to engage in smalltalk. Smalltalk is inherently trivial. You talk about things at work, you get to know people you’re dating and in my job as an English teacher, the topics are usually trivial things like “Where’s the chair?” and “Do you like bananas?”

Ben Franklin’s definition of silence as “Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation” doesn’t lend itself to common social interaction. Perhaps it applied more in the 1700’s when you were working more in solitude or just didn’t come across as many people as you do today. After a week of contemplating my avoidance of trifling conversation, I have to wonder if Ben Franklin would be a guy you’d ever want to hang out with socially.

Next up: Order

Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.

I’ve got this one, I think.

Published on December 8, 2014


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