Publish Unit：Interpretation & Education Section(解說教育課)
The Nature Quiet mountain view in Yangmingshan National Park
The word "Quiet" emphasized in "Nature Quiet" can be interpreted differently as silence, calmness or serenity in Chinese. To make people better understand the meaning of the term, we use "quiet". The concept of so-called "Nature Quiet" is stated as follows:
- "Nature Quiet" describes the many colorful sounds that already exist in nature. It is not a soundless state, but a realization of connecting all living beings in nature through deep listening.
- "Nature Quiet" is the key element of conservation. Maintaining a quiet environment is equally important to human health and communications among wild lives. We must concern about the need of listening for other creatures, not only for the mankind.
- "Nature Quiet" is the key literacy for a citizen to know about environmental aesthetics. Through quiet contemplation, one can construct the value and attitude towards listening, that is, modesty, respect and tolerance.
The Background of International Quiet Topics
The morning light in the woods is the best recipe for nourishing your mind
In the World Conservation Congress held by IUCN in Hawaii in September 2016, the strategy and outline for future nature soundscape conservation and human noise control were discussed through a work team on the world Nature Soundscape conservation. The impact of Nature Soundscape on the environment and wildlife has become a world-recognized subject of conservation. More than catching on with the world trend, this park wish to implement the idea of healthy environment as well as to provide more health resource, to promote the health of body-mind-spirit, and to educate and spread it out to the public. Only by using the nature and human resources of the National Park, will the goal of "Healthy Park, Healthy Mankind" be reached. This is a place where people with hectic daily life can learn and experience how to quiet down and slow down. It is also a way to protect the environment and cleanse the heart, as only if the heart changes, will the ecology change.
The prominent global organization "Quiet Parks International" （founded on Earth Day, April 22, 2019） which focuses on Quiet topics, was initiated by the well-known wilderness sound recordist and acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton, who classified Quiet places into five categories: Urban Quiet Parks, Wilderness Quiet Parks, Quiet Trails, Quiet Hotels, Quiet Residences and Communities. Gordon’s view on "Quiet" has two facets, one is internal, a sense of respect for life which belongs to soul aspect; another is external, a feeling when one stays in a quiet natural environment without getting any man-made noise.
Quiet Topics in Taiwan
A good partner to promote soundscape conservation
In recent years, scholars and experts in environmental research, wilderness sound recordists and sound artists are displaying and saving sound data through ecological survey, marine whale and dolphin acoustics, hearing healthcare and noise examination, soundscape composition, and the implementation of Sound Map and Sound Data projects. In March 2015, Laila Fan, an environmental education advocator, organized a group of people who were dedicated to acoustics research, sound arts and environmental education, and founded the "Soundscape Association of Taiwan". As a forerunner in this area, this association expects to become a cross-disciplinary platform which combines science, culture, arts, history and soundscape ecology to promote soundscape conservation and cultural heritage preservation, and each one can share his dream and voice with others.
The Soundscape Progress in Yangmingshan
According to the Noise Control Act, Yangmingshan National Park is listed as class 1 noise control area, which is the most quiet area. In this area, using loudspeaker, shooting firecracker and any conducts that would affect the quiet environment are prohibited. Besides, any noise generated from the sites, constructions and facilities in this area must not exceed the control limit.
"Listening by the Pond" transmits the soundscape of Nature
- Re-discover the connection with land by listening
- Recorded the nature sound at Menghuan Pond of Qixing Mountain and made an audiobook "Listening by the Pond" in 2017
The concept of preserving "quiet" needs to be addressed with a clear object which will demonstrate the importance of Soundscape preservation. That is how Ms. Laila Fan was invited to start a one-year sound recording project by the Menghuan pond. A CD was made and an elegant essay on nature was written to send the message from the land, hoping one could feel connected with the land and with himself through natural soundscape. In fact, sounds in Yangmingshan are so abundant, while most people never know how to listen. This work is an invitation of you to reflect and experience the power of quiet through reading a fine essay and listening to a pristine soundscape.
- The Soundscape Survey in Yangmingshan National Park in 2018
A group photo of Gordon Hempton and Laila Fan, Chin-Hui Fan who is the chairman of Soundscape Association of Taiwan
In 2018, under a research project on Yangmingshan National Park Soundscape, the Soundscape Association of Taiwan did an extensive survey on the soundscape resources in the area of Erziping, Lujiaokeng and Zhuzihu, where sound characteristics recording and noise analysis were performed in natural environment. The results from the survey lay the foundation for pushing forward nature soundscape conservation in Yangmingshan National Park. This effort shows that "Soundscape Conservation" can actually be implemented in National Parks. Taiwan’s urban type National Park has set a benchmark for bringing the power of Nature Quiet to people in Taiwan and from abroad as well.
- In 2018, the world well-known acoustic ecologist Gordon Hempton was invited to Taiwan by the Soundscape Association of Taiwan. During his stay in Taiwan, Gordon was deeply impressed with the soundscape environment in Yangmingshan National Park.
Gordon and other people founded Quiet Parks International （QPI） in 2019, a non-profit organization whose missions are focusing on worldwide national parks conservation, and Nature Quiet in urban parks and communities. At the invitation of QPI, Yangmingshan National Park is becoming the first Urban Quiet Park in the world, and a representative of the most forward-looking International Quiet Parks. Nature Quiet thus brings body-mind recovery and inner power to people in Taiwan and from abroad, and becomes a working example for nature conservation.
Gordon Hempton came to Taiwan for the Soundscape Workshop
- "2019 Menghuan Pond International Quiet Park Soundscape Symposium" held at Taipei City Teachers’ In-Service Education Center on November 9th, 2019
Yangmingshan National Park is located to the north of Taipei basin. For most people in Taipei, it is easily accessible and a healing place. Though you may see crowds at some hot spots, there are still many quiet places you can rest and relax. Take Menghuan Pond for example, according to the survey conducted by the Soundscape Association of Taiwan, the background noise can be lower than 30dB on a regular early morning day with few visitors. However, the sound level could jump over 60dB if there is a chorus of frogs, birds and cicadas, or an airplane flying above. If the airplane noise can be neglected, the various sounds from the wildlife are amazing. It is also a place where you can appreciate abundant nature soundscape in different seasons. The Menghuan Pond has therefore become a demonstration site for soundscape preservation. Elementary and middle school teachers in Yangmingshan area are invited to join the listening to the nature program through Taipei City Teachers’ In-Service Education Center. By making nature soundscape listening an outdoor learning experience in the future, the soundscape education will definitely take root on young students.
The Menghuan Pond Trail is the first "Quiet Trail" in Yangmingshan area starting June, 2020.
The Menghuan Pond provides a quiet listening experience
The Menghuan pond is an important national wetland and also a marvelous outdoor classroom for listening. The Yangmingshan National Park is located to the north of Taipei basin and is close to Greater Taipei area with population of nearly seven million. More than four million visitors go to the park each year. Though some popular spots are jammed with crowds, there are quiet places where the busy city dwellers can rest and relax. The Quiet Trail is intended to provide the visitors a guaranteed quiet listening experience.
Certification of the World’s first Urban Quiet Park
On June 5th, 2020, World Environment Day—Yangmingshan National Park will be proclaimed the World’s first Urban Quiet Park
Listening to Nature Quiet in Yangmingshan National Park
Laila Fan, chairman of Soundscape Association of Taiwan, is currently Taiwan representative of Quiet Parks International. She invited QPI founder Gordon Hempton to visit Taiwan and give lecture, then holding a two-day workshop "Listening to Nature Workshop 2018" in Yangmingshan National Park. Gordon Hempton was very impressed with the overall soundscape environment in Yangmingshan, and thought the park has great potential to be an urban quiet park and saw the necessity to push forward. After working in collaboration with Yangmingshan National Park for the past two years, Yangmingshan National Park will be designated the World’s first Urban Quiet Park on June 5th, 2020, and announced to the world.
Last Updated on ：2020-06-03