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ChangingMinds Blog! > Blog Archive > 12-Apr-15

 


Sunday 12-March-15

The bell and the cry

I was walking through our local town today and heard a hand-bell ringing occasionally in the distance. I wondered what it was all about. As I approached, it got louder and I headed in its direction to see what was up. I found a stall outside the local baker, with one of the staff standing there, dressed up in period costume, ringing the bell while calling out their wares.

What a splendidly traditional thing to do. And so effective, too. Our ancestors did not know about psychology theory. In fact psychology as a discipline really only took off in the 20th century. But our forefathers certainly knew how to change minds, and ringing a bell proved a brilliant way to get attention. The frequency response of the bronze or brass and the nice curvy shape of the bell are all perfect for creating a penetrating sound that, with a big bell, carry for miles. It is no surprise that churches have bells, mounted up high, to call their flocks for service. Nor is it a surprise that ringing bells have been used as a signal for both danger and victory for so many centuries.

Another means of gaining attention is the human voice. Children know instinctively that crying will automatically grab the attention of any nearby adult. Another non-surprise is how adults on public transport will sit as far away as possible from young children.

So what is your bell? How do you cry for urgent attention?


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