(en español lo publicó la Revista Integral en su número 278 de febrero de 2003)
There is quiet, a stillness in all of us. So we thirst for quiet and silence, like we thirst for water. We search for silence in quiet places such as forests, oceans, gardens, churches, libraries, and in our homes. Our quest for silence comes to us also in prayer and sleep. We all have special places we seek to be in quiet, in peace, in silence. Silence makes me feel alive. There are no distractions in silence and it is here that I find what is truly important in life.
I collect nature sounds that is my job. However, today I am much more likely to be called an acoustic ecologist, than a just a sound collector, because sound production, transmission, and perception has everything to do with how ecological communities work. Natural sounds carry the news about weather, food, danger, a possible mate or challenger in every direction, easily for miles under calm atmospheric conditions. My extensive library, amassed from around the globe, is applied to everything from computer games, radio programs, movie soundtracks and music CDs, to museum exhibits, art galleries, and environmental education programs. Why do my clients come to me, rather than record the sounds themselves? The world has become so incredibly noisy with the sounds of human activity that silence, the canvas on which auditory experience is written on, has just about vanished, unless we preserve it. Why is natural silence important?