Erling Kagge is a Norwegian explorer, lawyer, art collector, publisher, and author. He is the first person to have completed the Three Poles Challenge on foot — the North Pole, the South Pole, and the summit of Mount Everest. As a Renaissance man, Kagge is fascinated with the silence around us and the silence within us. In this intriguing book, he asks three questions:

  • What is silence?
  • Where can it be found?
  • Why is it now more important than ever?

After charting the noise pollution of cities and measuring the subtle ways in which silence works wonders is us, Kagge firmly states: "Silence is the new luxury. Silence is more exclusive and long-lasting than other luxuries." It is an experience that is free and does require new models. Best of all, it can be found wherever you are inside your mind; "You don't have to go to Sri Lanka: you can experience it in your bathtub."

Both Jesus and Buddha sought out places of silence to prepare themselves for dealing with Mystery. The author respects the hush that descends upon us when we stand before a work of art and allow it to seep into our bodies, minds, and souls. Kagge believes that the most important book you can read is the one you live every day. (See the excerpt.)