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A Moment of Silence For Norway, When We Need To Scream…

Get ready for a rant. I’m writing on four hours of sleep.

I am a firm believer in talking therapy.

A member of our community mentioned in a comment yesterday that in Sweden, where she lives, a minute of silence was observed for Norway.

Here is what she wrote to me in response and support of my post yesterday.

Listening beneath my words…

She was listening, really listening, beneath what I was writing. She was hearing something, because she always listens keenly, intuitively, and she’s always, somehow, tunes into me and what I’m feeling. Even when I don’t hear myself.

She has a special gift as so many of you do, here.

Listen to what she wrote:

“Scandinavia has just observed a minute of silence for the victims. Details are gruesome and far too many than I’d like. It’s easy to click on one link, then another, and another. Norwegian is similar to swedish, easy to piece together. On Friday swedish television and online media ran news off norwegian television nonstop.”

This comment really resonated with me, but so did that “minute of silence” for Norway. So please forgive me for what I’m about to say. I’m upset. I’m exhausted. I’m spent.

What good is a minute of silence, today?

It’s respectful, but then what? After that minute is up?

I ask you, without meaning any lack of respect for this long held, tradition

Did you know a journalist came up with this idea in 1919? Well, the face of journalism and it’s practice has evolved since 1919 and I think it’s time to update the idea that this Australian soldier and journalist, named Edward George Honey (1885-1922) is credited with creating for Armistice Day (now known as Remembrance Day) …

Because, I ask you, how will the citizenry of Norway feel about a Moment of Silence observed for them in Sweden? Now? Today?

All a Moment of Silence will accomplish, it seems to me, is cause you and I and anyone to bury our feelings shock and pain and disbelief even deeper? I do not think this tradition works anymore. I think it’s well-meaning and kind in nature, but not necessarily helpful.

Not in our world, where we can connect so effortlessly. Let’s forget about silence and shout out. Do something, together. As the “Global Theatre” we have become. (Marshall McLuhan originally called what we’ve come to know as a “Global Village,” the world he envisioned, a “Global Theatre” and he was right on. We’re so connected we’re almost intuitive. ALMOST.)

Let’s really explore how we feel about Norway and that particularly heartless, soulless “DESTRUCTIVE Craziness” behind the slaughter of its innocent children and citizens, that has traumatized those of us who are left behind. I feel pain and fury. Don’t you?

There are two kinds of craziness ~ Destructive Craziness and Constructive Craziness…

And that monster in Norway is DESTRUCTIVELY crazy. Is he human? Can anyone like that be human? Flawed to such an enormous degree?

I don’t know, but I doubt it. No one monster like that has any humanity left, if ever he did. He is so severely flawed and damaged ~ probably born with a very severe genetic problem, an unfixable, untreatable abnormality.

But don’t lump him in with me and my craziness, please…

With 99.99% of the human population, craziness is a multi-faceted, complex, uniquely individual phenomenon and so many of us are help-able. We are emotionally a little skewed, but who isn’t? I ask you? Who’s normal? We’re all “Next to Normal”…

Some drugs are good tools to help us calm down or up and get talking.

Healing must involve talking, and talking, depending on who’s listening, is healing. Therapeutic. You don’t feel alone. But, only if ~ I repeat ~ only if the listener is really hearing you with her/his eyes, ears AND heart. Soul. Even my little Dandie Dinmont Terriers can listen like this to me, to a certain degree. With their eyes and their souls. And my closest friends, especially my husband. I’m lucky. And Dr. Bob.

That’s the difference between minds and brains. Pills don’t listen. They numb nerves. That can help, but there’s more to it.

Trust me, I’m not going into any specifics here. I just know…

After 51 years and counting of talking therapy, I know what works.

After experiencing the after shock of two summer suicides. Two years apart. Two wonderful human beings who died by suicide.

They DID NOT COMMIT ANY CRIME. So let’s take that one out of our lingo, okay? It’s hurtful to the people who survive them and they have enough pain and convoluted emotions to deal with. They don’t need that, too.

Two superb human beings with everything to live for were not able to be helped by modern medicine including anti-depressants because, perhaps, no one was really able to hear the whisperings of their hearts, because they weren’t able to find the words or those ears or both ~ who knows?

I know that talking with someone helps you feel you’re being heard. Who’s really listening, when you’re FEELING LISTENED TO, you can feel better. It’s not instant. It takes time. And patience.

But ultimately it’s the feelings that come first. And they’re not always rational. They run deep. Almost always, they trump reason and that’s the problem with this world. Feelings aren’t taken seriously enough. Everything has to have reason and rational.

Am I upset? Can you tell that I’m upset? Well, if you can, you’re right. If you cannot, I’m sorry.

Perhaps you’re not feeling and hearing with your eyes. With your heart. I’m sorry. I’m very upset. I have to stop.

End of rant…

Painting titled “The Scream” by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, 1883.

A Moment of Silence For Norway, When We Need To Scream…

Sandy Naiman

Sandy Naiman is a Toronto freelance journalist.

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APA Reference
Naiman, S. (2019). A Moment of Silence For Norway, When We Need To Scream…. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 18, 2019, from


Last updated: 26 Mar 2019
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