Perhaps the primary reason for my unequivocal silence in the virtual world was the sentiment that the community I exist in has, in a sense, either misused or overused the freedom and the privilege of being heard. I remember thinking “too much talk, too less action” and though I share the same weakness, I am quite certain it has become prevalent. In this exercise of silence, which I have practiced as a young boy albeit unconsciously, I’d like to believe I’ve somehow learned a lot of things- lessons mostly about my own processes and my niche as a social and individual being. This “exercise” has led me to participate in even more specific experiments on the importance of silence, its fundamental purpose in our evolution. One such experiment was the four-day retreat I spent at the Priory of the Brothers and Sisters of St. John where I found for myself another hiding place- the Celestial Gardens. Situation-based experiments also contributed greatly to my foray with the absence of noise, instances such as social gatherings in various scales from parties to small-group interactions where my apparent silence expresses observation as a participative reaction. This portion of my immersion with silence, however, might have only affirmed my inherent proclivities as far as social interaction is concerned. I am a confessed observer, and even my initiatory actions are observation-oriented as well. As a practitioner of performance art, observation plays a vital role in the creation and success of my performances, much like the mechanics of silence and observation where one has a considerable need for the other.
I should have qualified silence first before I started this discussion. Silence practiced maybe defined as either of the following: being absent of noise or being in environments absent of noise. And because I included the word “noise” in my definition, the word can refer to the literal “noise” or the noise as in the excess use of speech in the process of interaction. Noise can also refer to unreasonable stress one inflicts on oneself. Having stated these qualifiers and qualifications, the exercise, ultimately, has rendered me- to put things simply –addicted to silence. Perhaps this is how my initial reasons have evolved into and thus prolonged my refusal to write text in whatever form. I have come to realize, however, that although silence has and will remain a preoccupation as far as my existence is concerned, it should be, at least challenged and deconstructed. Challenging and deconstructing silence will not come as a counter-study or an immersion in the definitions of “noise” I have stated, rather, an acceptance of the importance of language and the documentation of observations through language aka writing. This discussion is one of the first attempts; thus, forgive me if this comes out rather alienating.
With that, I am pleased to announce that READ RUSS will from here on in, push itself to publishing observations in a close-to-regular frequency.