Quotes about silence

A collection of quotes on the topic of silence.

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Ali photo
Citát „What keeps my heart awake is colorful silence.“
Claude Monet photo

„What keeps my heart awake is colorful silence.“

—  Claude Monet French impressionist painter 1840 - 1926

Paul McCartney photo
W. H. Auden photo
Michel Foucault photo
Swami Shraddhanand photo
Claude Debussy photo

„Music is the space between the notes.“

—  Claude Debussy French composer 1862 - 1918

As quoted in Turning Numbers into Knowledge: Mastering the Art of Problem Solving (2001) by Jonathan G. Koomey, p. 96; since at least 2010 similar statements are also sometimes attributed to Mozart, and a similar remark, apparently one of Ben Jonson, is quoted in "Notes to Cynthia's Revels, in The Works of Ben Jonson: With Notes Critical and Explanatory, and a Biographical Memoir (1875), edited by William Gifford, Vol. 2, in notes to p. 223, on p. 551: Division, in music, is "the space between the notes of music, or the dividing of the tones."
Unsourced variants:
Music is the silence between the notes.
The music is not in the notes, but in the silence between.
The music is not in the notes, but in the silence between them.
Variant: Music is the space between the notes.

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Gabrielle Roy photo
Ram Dass photo

„We're fascinated by the words--but where we meet is in the silence behind them.“

—  Ram Dass American contemporary spiritual teacher and the author of the 1971 book Be Here Now 1931 - 2019

Muhammad Ali photo

„Silence is golden when you can't think of a good answer.“

—  Muhammad Ali African American boxer, philanthropist and activist 1942 - 2016

Michael Parenti photo

„Maintaining silence about a dirty truth is another way of lying, a common practice in high places.“

—  Michael Parenti American academic 1933

2 MEDIA AND CULTURE, The Invisible Bloodbaths, p. 132
Dirty truths (1996), first edition

Arthur Rimbaud photo

„I turned silences and nights into words. What was unutterable, I wrote down. I made the whirling world stand still.“

—  Arthur Rimbaud French Decadent and Symbolist poet 1854 - 1891

Source: A Season in Hell/The Drunken Boat

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart photo
Rumi photo

„Silence
is an ocean. Speech is a river.“

—  Rumi Iranian poet 1207 - 1273

"The Three Fish" Ch. 18 : The Three Fish, p. 196
Variant translations or adaptations:
Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.
As quoted in Teachers of Wisdom (2010) by Igor Kononenko, p. 134
Silence is an ocean. Speech is a river. Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.
As quoted in "Rumi’s wisdom" (2 October 2015) http://paulocoelhoblog.com/2015/10/02/character-of-the-week-rumi/, by Paulo Coelho
Context: Silence
is an ocean. Speech is a river.When the ocean is searching for you, don't walk
into the language-river. Listen to the ocean,
and bring your talky business to an end Traditional words are just babbling
in that presence, and babbling is a substitute
for sight.

Susan B. Anthony photo
Linda Sue Park photo
Audre Lorde photo

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“