The Chosen Topic Tracking: Silence
Silence 1: Danny explains his father's idea of living in silence for the first time. Reuven cannot understand how such a practice of communication can exist between a father and son. Danny and his father exchange no words except during the study of Talmud.
Silence 2: During Reuven's first visit to Reb Saunders' shul, he is confronted by Reb Saunders, asking him to talk about Danny's experiences in the library. Danny is upset that his father won't simply talk to and ask him instead of speaking through his friend. The silence between father and son is upheld, as Reuven becomes the communication between the two.
Silence 3: During the month of August, Reb Saunders and Danny go on a trip to Lakewood, where they spend an excruciating amount of time together on a bus in complete silence. Even while traveling they do not speak.
Silence 4: Reuven realizes the amount of torture that Danny goes through when he sees him reading in the library. He believes the silence between Danny and his father to be torturing his soul and does not know how to help.
Silence 5: For two years, Danny and Reuven have been living in silence, for Reb Saunders has placed a ban on speaking to any apikorsim, or non-Hasidic Jews. Now that the ban is lifted, Danny sits down next to Reuven and begins to speak to him. The silence between friends no longer exists, but it still lives deep within the Saunders family.
Silence 6: When Reuven visits the Saunders after the long period of silence, Reb Saunders shakes Reuven's hand and continues to invite him over to study Talmud on Saturdays. He never once mentions the horrible silence he forced upon the two friends.
Silence 7: When Reuven jokes about the silence living in Hasidic Jewry, Danny becomes hurt and angry. The silence is real to him and not simply a fact read in a textbook on Judaism. Reuven expresses his pain, anger, and sympathy towards Danny over the silence.
Silence 8: Reb Saunders explains to Reuven that he forced the silence upon his son so that he would learn to have the soul of a tzaddik. He already possesses a brilliant mind and wanted Danny to possess a brilliant spirit, as well. He believed the only method to do so was to raise Danny is silence. His father also raised him in silence, and it is from his own experience that he wanted to create a blessed soul for Danny.
Silence 9: Reuven and Danny hold one another, weeping over the years of hurt and silence. Although they are silent in their cries, no words need be exchanged. They are communicating in silence themselves.
Silence 10: Reuven asks Danny, as he leaves for Columbia University, if he will raise a son one day in silence. Danny says he will do so if he can find no other way.