The most basic and powerful way to connect to another person is to listen. Just listen. Perhaps the most important thing we ever give each other is our attention. … A loving silence often has far more power to heal and to connect than the most well-intentioned words.
Rachel Naomi Remen, Kitchen Table Wisdom

Listen is such a little, ordinary word. Yet we all know the pain of not being listened to, of not being heard. … In a way, not to be heard is not to exist.
Margaret Guenther, Holy Listening

Let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak.
James 1:19b (NRSV)

The origin of all trouble
Within this world
Is a single word
Spoken in haste.
Moritake Arakida, One Hundred Poems about the World

If one gives answer
before hearing,
it is folly and shame.
Proverbs 18:13 (NRSV)

You know they're going to hit you from all sides; better make up your mind who to, who not to listen to.
Amy Grant, "Who to Listen To," on Unguarded.

Everything has its wonders, even darkness and silence, and I learn, whatever state I may be in, therein to be content.
Helen Keller, The Story of My Life

When hearing is good, speaking is good.
Ancient Egyptian proverb in Ancient Near Eastern Texts

The whole idea of vocation, whatever form that vocation may take, implies the response to a call. If I am to live up to my vocation, I must go on listening for this voice. "Today, if you hear my voice, harden not your heart." That phrase of Psalm 95:7 makes a wonderful opening to daily prayer.
Esther de Waal, A Life-Giving Way

To live without listening is not to live at all; it is simply to drift in my own backwater.
Joan Chittister, Wisdom Distilled from the Daily

There is not in the world a kind of life more sweet and delightful than that of a continual conversation with God.Brother ...

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November 13, 2000

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