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"Life is all about noise, but silence is more important today than it has ever been."

Erling Kagge

In 1993, Norwegian polar explorer and author Erling Kagge embarked on a personal journey to the end of the world. Trekking across the arctic plains of the South Pole, the adventurer became the first person in history to reach the 'three poles' - North, South and the summit of Everest on foot. Today harnessing the experience of his solo expeditions, the gifted explorer shares his aspiration for silence in the age of noise.

 Lars Petter Petterson

Life’s not about the great big things but the small things we choose. Sometimes it makes sense to not just skip lightly over the lowest part of the fence.

Erling Kagge

Q: When did you first feel the profound appreciation for silence?

It came to me during my solitary journey to the South Pole. I spent fifty days and fifty nights under the midnight sun, walking into the depths of the most silent, still continent on earth. Alone on the ice, I could hear and feel the silence. Early on, when I was a child, to be silent was about boredom, it was about being left out, it was a sad place. But when I started to dig into it and notice the moments of silence around us in nature and in daily life, I became more aware of the importance of the silence within us. Life is all about noise, but silence is more important today than it has ever been. 

Q: A study once showed that people were more likely to self-administer electric shock than to sit in silence. This seems to be a powerful testament to how uncomfortable silence makes us.

One of them pushed the electric shock button 190 times. I’m surprised that it became so extreme but it’s true.

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