Deep Listening

One of my patients told me that when she tried to tell her story people often interrupted her to tell her that they once had something just like that happen to them. Subtly her pain became a story about themselves.  Eventually she stopped talking to most people. It was just too lonely.

Rachel Naomi Remen

What a difference it makes when someone truly listens to us, deeply, compassionately! When that happens, we come to life. The same happens when we listen deeply to another. They come to life.

In those times of deep sharing and deep listening, we discover the stories of our lives, our own inner wisdom, and the stories and wisdom of others. This kind of attentiveness is such an incredible gift of love when it is offered and received.

Deep listening might seem like something that we are doing all the time and therefore are quite adept at. The reality, I’ve learned, is that deep listening is a skill that requires that I set aside assumptions and judgments – and also my need to interrupt or talk. When I’m able to do that, able to be present, an enormous shift takes place. A holy connection takes shape.

This month as we reflect on and practice deep listening, I hope that we will experience deeper connection with ourselves and each other.

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