Voice is most commonly thought of as the way we use our mouths to audibly communicate our thoughts to the external world.
But if our audible voice were taken away, we would have no choice but to be immersed in the silence of our thoughts and the sensual perception of our surroundings.
With our audible voice silenced, we can begin to express ourselves through our eyes. Letting our eyes become our voice allows us to fully process what is before us. Our eyes gather the information we need to completely understand what we are experiencing inside.
Our eyes help us develop a unique perspective that silently influences our actions.
Perhaps one of the few times we can fully experience this loss of audible voice is under water. At such great depths, the only sound we hear is the bubbling of water as we breathe oxygen from a tank attached to our backs. We can’t feel our surroundings because the wet suit numbs our touch to the outside world.
Our eyes become all we have to engage us with the surrounding world.
The other day, I listened as a man described his scuba diving experience.
He described the fear he felt in being blinded by a large gold fish turning quickly in front of him, cutting him off from all he could see:
All is dark
a spark of light
projects a tunnel
through the night
a quick spray
and a trail of bubbles
like a wand in the wind
aside a golden orange
glow it flipped past
like a clap of lightning
deflecting the path
lost in a golden firework
an explosion in my mind
in the aftershock
it passes by
a sky line of a tail
leaving all dark
In that under-the-sea world—one I have never seen first-hand, yet one I vicariously envisioned through his words—our sense of vision is magnified. There, all that we witness is through our eyes: motion, light and color. For this man, in his heightened state of vision, darkness became the most riveting moment under the sea.
“Our eyes become our voice,” was the poignant phrase he used.
Author: Jane CoCo Cowles
Apprentice Editor: Melinda Matthews; Editor: Catherine Monkman