Can Silence Actually Drive You Crazy?
*Watch with headphones on! Is 45 minutes really the longest anyone can stay in a perfectly silent, pitch-black room? To me this sounded like unsubstantiated rubbish, like the claim the Great Wall is the only manmade structure visible from space. So I put my own psyche on the line, subjecting myself to over an hour of the most intense quiet on Earth. No, this was not THE quietest room on Earth (-9dB) but it is one of the quietest, and the truth is once you put a person inside, they are by far the loudest thing in there so the sound rating of the room is irrelevant. I was not surprised to find that I could stay in there for as long as I liked and feel perfectly fine. What was surprising is that my heartbeat was audible. You can hear it on the sound recording. Now I wasn't consciously aware of the sound of my heart while in the room, but I was more aware of the feeling of it beating. Huge thank you to everyone at BYU: Duane Merrell, Spencer Perry, Cameron Vongsawad, Jazz Myers, Ann Clawson, and Robert Willes.
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