Silence comes from the Latin word, silens, meaning to be still, quiet, or at rest. Other words related to it are: calm, peace, serenity, tranquility, poise, composure, noiselessness, hush, and solitude. In his description of stillness, Romano Guardini cuts to its very essence: “Stillness is the tranquility of the inner life; the quiet at the depths of its hidden streams. It is a collected, total presence, a being ‘all there,’ receptive, alert, ready . . . It is when the soul abandons the restlessness of purposeful activity.” Within this definition we learn silence’s first fundamental lesson: It is not so much a lack of sound as it is a cultivation of interior stillness.
Eugene Hemrick, Silence: Taken from the promise of virtue