Difficult as it is really to listen to someone in affliction, it is just as difficult for him to know that compassion is listening to him.
Doubt yourself and you doubt everything you see. Judge yourself and you see judges everywhere. But if you listen to the sound of your own voice, you can rise above doubt and judgment. And you can see forever.
Too often we underestimate the power of a touch a smile a kind word a listening ear an honest compliment or the smallest act of caring all of which have the potential to turn a life around.
The hearing that is only in the ears is one thing. The hearing of understanding is another. But the hearing of the spirit is not limited to any one faculty, to the ear or the mind. Hence it demands emptiness of all of the faculties. And when the faculties are empty, the whole being listens. There is then a direct grasp of what is right there before you that can never be heard with the ear or understood with the mind.
Listening is a magnetic and strange thing a creative force. The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward. When we are listened to it creates us makes us unfold and expand.
When we talk about understanding, surely it takes place only when the mind listens completely — the mind being your heart, your nerves, your ears — when you give your whole attention to it.
We may want to love other people without holding back, to feel authentic, to breathe in the beauty around us, to dance and sing. Yet each day we listen to inner voices that keep our life small.
Listening is such a simple act. It requires us to be present and that takes practice but we don’t have to do anything else. We don’t have to advise or coach or sound wise. We just have to be willing to sit there and listen.