Quakers (society of friends) have much to say on your issues raised. my own feeling's that one difference between alone-silence and group-silence is the further delight of feeling the surrounding presences.
it's very physical joy as well as the other ineffables we talky-types try to describe.
same old sow
> From: Mark Weiss <[log in to unmask]>
> Date: 2005/11/26 Sat AM 11:50:03 EST
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: Other French joke
> My experience is something like this. I'm an intensely social being, living
> for some years now as something of an isolate. When I find myself in
> congenial company I quickly revert, and the transition back to solitude can
> be painful. It usually takes no more than a day. Driving cross country solo
> has been a favorite adventure for me since my twenties, despite that first
> painful day, which gives wy to an intense, often ecstatic, feeling of
> freedom. I rarely listen to music (same at home, though right into my
> thirties I don't think I had a waking moment without music), but the
> internal monologue flows on, often including music that I've pretty
> thoroughly absorbed. Then come the moments when something surfaces without
> words, or with words that make no sense to me. I assume that this is what
> imposed or self-imposed silence is about. The question becomes, still, what
> 's different between doing this in a group or by oneself. I'd guess, for
> instance, that in a group there's an awareness to be overcome (or perhaps
> embraced?) that the silence is a social act, to be acknowledged and
> renegotiated every time one encounters another what, communicant--the
> presence of others very much a part of one's internal environment. Is
> silence in that environment (as in, say, a Cage concert) its own kind of noise?
> At 11:18 AM 11/26/2005, you wrote:
> >Interesting question, Mark. I would like to think I do something similar a
> >lot of the time, but is reading being 'in' silence? Writing, perhaps. But
> >then, I usually, while not talking to anyone, have music on: so, not silence?
> >And I talk to myself.
> >On 25-Nov-05, at 7:02 PM, Mark Weiss wrote:
> >>Here's an interesting question, interesting to me, at least. A lot of my
> >>friends go on retreats to Catholic or Buddhist venues, where they're
> >>silent among others being silent. I live and work by myself and in fact
> >>spend many days saying very little. My favorite travel is solitary
> >>walking and camping. Obviously a lot of people for a lot of millenia have
> >>referred being silent in a crowd. Any ideas?
> >Douglas Barbour
> >11655 - 72 Avenue NW
> >Edmonton Ab T6G 0B9
> >(780) 436 3320
> >Drag yr mouldy old bones
> >Up these stairs & tell me
> >What you died of,
> >I think
> >I've got it
> > Sharon Thesen