Peace and quiet in the middle of Berlin? At the Brandenburg Gate of all places? The Raum der Stille is open to everyone – to relax, to rest or to meditate.
A moment ago you were standing among Berliners and tourists on Pariser Platz admiring the Brandenburg Gate – and suddenly it’s all gone quiet. The Raum der Stille is designed for precisely that: calm and relaxation. And all that at one of Berlin’s busiest attractions.
Silence in the middle of the city
Relaxation, prayer, remembrance, meditation and contemplation – those are precisely the activities that the Raum der Stille (Room of Silence) is ideal for. Quite simply, it is there for anyone who needs time to think in a peaceful and neutral atmosphere. Anyone is welcome to spend some time quietly there. The Raum der Stille also symbolises tolerance among people – without violence, hate or xenophobia. The 30-square-metre room is modestly furnished, the most eye-catching item being the woven wall tapestry by Ritta Hager, entitled Light that Penetrates the Darkness. In contrast to the Raum der Stille itself, the anteroom is brightly painted. The walls are a calming blue. This is how the relaxation stage begins before visitors enter the silent room where they can sink further into their thoughts.
An American inspiration
The idea of the Room of Silence was inspired by a meditation room set up in New York in 1957. The UN General Secretary at the time, the Swede Dag Hammarskjöld, had a sparsely furnished room set up, free of any religious decorations. In 1988, the idea of a room like this, but open to the public, was picked up in the GDR. After reunification, the idea took hold and a group initiators formed in 1993. The most challenging thing at first was to find a suitable place for the room, because if possible, they wanted it to be somewhere on the former border. Finally, on October 1994, the Raum der Stille opened in the northern gatehouse of the Brandenburg Gate.
Every day since then it has had more than a hundred visitors from many different places and religions, wanting to take some time off from the noisy and pulsating metropolis.