January 20, 2022

Tinnitus: A Crazy-Making Curse or a Spiritual Blessing?


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What an unusual phenomenon! It’s quiet in my home and it’s quiet in the neighborhood.

The tranquility isn’t typical. I often wince at my husband’s loud speaking voice when he talks on his iPhone, cringe at his stomping feet on our creaky upper floor while I’m trying to write downstairs, and I find myself completely annoyed by his “Mister Fix-It” assortment of loud tools for outdoor and indoor use.

Don’t get me wrong. I appreciate and deeply love him, but I find him noisier than me. And as for our side street? It is a favorite small highway for noisy trucks, souped-up cars, and motorcycles—and for negative dessert—there is a helicopter that whirs close to our house every day at 5 a.m.

But right now, in this moment, at 3:49 p.m., it is quiet. Ahhh. I found perfect peace. Or did I? I thought I liked silence. I am an introspective writer and musician who gently rings sound healing crystal bowls to meditate, pray, and send peace, healing, and love to the world. While the silence I hear in this moment should soothe me, I am feeling an emotional contradiction.

I may have a problem with silence.

It is in the silence that I am tortured by constant inner noise. Continuous high pitches. This affliction has a silly name that makes me laugh and cry. Tinnitus. The popular website, WebMD, says that “tinnitus, or ringing in the ears, is the sensation of hearing ringing, buzzing, hissing, chirping, whistling.”

I wouldn’t describe my noises as chirping, whistling, ringing, buzzing, or hissing. The sounds are higher than any sound I have ever heard, played, or sung. It is debilitating, and when my surroundings are quiet, my focus zooms in toward the high-pitched sounds even more.

Despite this curse, there is something inside me that is determined to survive these unrelenting shrill shrieking pitches. Thanks to a spark of creative insight, I found a unique way to orchestrate these horrible sounds into pleasurable and even spiritual experiences. I redefined the never-ending noises as unique sound meditations, and because I believe in the mystical world of chakras, my negative experience has shifted into a positive one.

Because the sound is high, it relates to the seventh chakra. What if these grating sounds are gifting me with a strong seventh chakra—the most spiritual chakra of them all?

The seventh chakra is a “wheel of spinning energy” that swirls around the crown of the head and sends a healing violet color all around and within me. The crown chakra tells me that I can know everything without knowing anything. It encourages me to trust in the mystical magic of life and it lets me know that I am guided, protected, and loved every step of the way. The sounds are my cheerleaders, urging me to keep faith and hope and giving me the strength to surrender to inner peace, no matter what.

Tinnitus. A crazy-making curse or a blessing? I am determined to look at it as a blessing. I have no choice. I must accept what I am experiencing “as is.” My challenging experience has become a personal metaphor filled with spiritual messages: dark times can turn into hope, hatred can shift to love, unrest can transform into peace, and calm moments can be chosen amid chaos.

Life is all about attitude, imagination, inner growth, curiosity, creativity, and determination. We can survive and even thrive through any challenge, and discover—as my eight-year-old granddaughter says —“the silver lining” in almost everything. Even tinnitus.


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