Picture this: you’re standing in the center of a major city, perhaps it’s Times Square.

All around you is a cacophony of sounds: horns honking, tourists laughing, street musicians playing on the corner, vendors peddling their wares, the rattle of the subway below, the hammering and drilling from a construction site and the distant sound of sirens.

The soundscape of a place is the collection of sounds from all sources that can be heard by someone in that place. The urban soundscape has long been associated with increased stress, fatigue, high blood pressure, anxiety and sleeplessness. It can be hard to find moments of quiet and freedom from noise amongst the hustle and bustle of the city and learning to quiet the mind and shut out the noise is a daily challenge for city dwellers.

According to architect Kaydee Kreitlow, putting on headphones offers sanctuary from the noise by providing, what she refers to as, audible isolation. But what happens if instead of tuning out the sound, we find sanctuary in it?

When you start listening–really listening–you can hear beyond the honking horns and sirens. You begin to hear the soft, soothing ambient sounds of the city–the pigeons cooing, the footsteps on pavement, the sound of steam rising from the subway.

Where do you go to hear the peaceful sounds in your city? Share on FB & IG and tag us using #citysoundscapes.

Interested in learning more about the study of sound and its powerful effect on the mind, body and spirit? Sign up for updates for our upcoming Integrative Sound & Music Institute (SMI) Online Certificate Program HERE.

Click HERE to read Part I in our Urban Sanctuary Series.

Click HERE to read Part II in our Urban Sanctuary Series.

© 2020 New York Open Center, Inc. Terms & Conditions | Privacy Policy