There’s been much ado about the freedom of expression right from the time of constitutional evolution the world over. But sometimes being quiet is more important than being vocal about an issue. So how come nobody thought of the freedom to shut up?
Spiritual teachers have time and again emphasised the need to be alone with yourself to achieve inner peace. But somebody who wants to stay mum has no legal backing to do so in our world! Friends and well-wishers around you will force you to speak up, tell them what you’re thinking, try to force you out of your solitude by cajoling, persuasion and emotional blackmail. The message is loud and clear: you have no right to shut up when you want to, especially if you’re the gregarious types most of the time.
The only occasion when the law gives you the choice to keep quiet is when they’re arresting you for an offence: ‘Whatever you say or do can be and will be held against you’. But not all of us get the opportunity of committing so grave a crime when such a privilege could be accorded to us. So we’re stuck with the freedom of speech for most parts of our lives, having to make the right sounds forever! And because our society does not comprehend the Right to Silence, we’re bound to make most gaffes throught incorrect speech and suffer the repercussions of bad Karma. Tragic, don’t you think?!
Like the not-so-popular-now Boyzone would put it, It’s only words and words are all I have….