A moment of contemplation for yourself or on behalf of others on everything from the life-altering to the mundane.

Prayer: A conversation with The Higher Other who lives within each of us. An invitation to vent, to re-think, to ask, and to rest.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Meditation in Eastertide ~ Wednesday, Week 2: Are You Silenting?

April 10, 2024 ~ Wednesday in Eastertide, Week 2: Are You Silenting?  '24


To ‘listen’ another’s soul 
into a condition of disclosure and discovery 
may be almost the greatest service that 
any human being ever performs for another  

~ Douglas Steere* 


Well, Dear God, here's a big shocker for you ~ 
     I do acknowledge that sometimes I am so busy thinking about what I want to say that I forget to listen to what someone else is saying! I'm still learning, slowly, to give others their air time even though I'm sure my response is the better comment and the most necessary. (Yeah, ok, I'll work on that thought, too.) I have experienced the rare moment when I feel listened to, as if what I think and say and feel are important to someone. Other times I can go on and on about my stuff trying to re-experience the feeling of importance. But when I'm working consciously to be more aware, I have had moments of just being present and listening to someone in need while letting whatever I wanted to say go away, unspoken. It is a moment that combines the graces of humility and respect. 
    I know that true listening is a gift of personal attention to the one who is speaking in words and/or emotion especially in these times of so much yelling at others to make a point. I also know that deep listening is a gift to myself, as with it I learn more about the person I'm with and myself, in my own needs and wants, how and if to express them, and how to let the conversation flow with little or none of my stuff. 
     I will strive to be more attentive to others and less attentive to what I want to say about it. And the best example I have as a pay-off is You, always here, always listening even when I ramble (like now). Thank You for that and, as You already know, it's hard for me to take my own counsel in this so I'll be asking You regularly for a little smack on the back of my head along the way, OK? amen.  

Best advice for good listening:     

DO  Listen deeply to understand  

DON'T  Listen only with the intent to reply 




 *Douglas Steere [1901-1995] was a Quaker ecumenist who was professor of philosophy from 1928 to 1964 at Haverford College near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and spent a year as a visiting professor at Union Theological Seminary in New York.  Dr. Steere was significantly involved in Quaker post-war relief efforts in Poland, Norway, and Finland after World War II and was given national recognition by Finland in 1987.  He held a PhD from Harvard and was a Rhodes Scholar with two additional degrees from Oxford University.  A prolific author, editor, and translator of books and articles on Quakerism and other religions, he was invited as an Ecumenical Observer at the Second Vatican Council.



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