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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Deep Listening and Total Listening

Aloha - Everyone

Benefit from Deep Listening or Total Listening in your meditation and daily living.

These are skills any of us can learn regardless of your age, intellect or life experiences.  Historically, Buddhists, Quakers and psychotherapists have been practicing some forms of deep listening, compassionate listening or total listening.  This kind of listening requires that we put aside our judgments and listen from an open heart. Don't be so eager to fill the sound of silence.  Try to bring Deep Listening and Total Listening in our daily practice and live.a joyful and compassionate life. 


"Deep Listening is the kind o listening that can help relive the suffering from the person.  You can call it compassionate listening.  You listen with only one purpose: to help him or her to empty his heart and if you remember that you are helping him or her to suffer less and then even if he says things full of wrong perception, full of bitterness, you are still capable of continue to listen with compassion.  Because you know that listening like that, with compassion, you give him or her chance to suffer less.  If you want to help him or her to correct his perception, then you wait for another time.  But for the time being, you just listen with compassion and help him or her suffer less.  And one hour like that can bring transformation and healing. "
 - Thick Nhat Hanh

Except from Thich Nhat Hanh's interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Thích Nhất Hạnh is a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk, teacher, author, poet and peace activist. He lives in the Plum Village Monastery in the Dordogne region in the South of France


You are either listening or talking; it is impossible to do both at the same time.  Here, I don't just mean stopping your external speech, but I mean quieting the inner speech as well.  When you are quiet within, only then can you really listen.  To listen totally, you have to listen with everything you've got. Through such training in mindful silence, all barriers to communications are fully dissolved.  You become effortlessly sensitive to the people around you.  You generate happy harmony in your family and rich success in your business.

From the place of total listening, you might even hear your own body trying to tell you something.  Before coming down with a sickness, the body always gives many warnings.  However, very few of us listen to our bodies' signals, because we are too busily engaged in our inner conversation.  Even when our bodies scream a desperate warning, begging for a rest, we are too busy thinking to hear the S.O.S.  Then we get caner, heart-disease, or some other terminal ailment.  Mediators, on the other hand, learn to listen to their bodies from the place of mindful silence.  They hear the needs of their bodies, like they hear the needs of their families, and end up living long, happy lives with both. Total listening generates insights:  From silence, you get to know the true nature of things.  And the very best insight is realizing life's meaning.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if we all would put aside for a while every dogma, both religious and personal, and just listen to the throb of life with an alert, silent mind.  Then we would totally listen to the teaching of life.  Life is constantly, patiently, and gently offering us her wisdom, but we are too busy talking to ourselves to ever listen totally.  No wonder so few of us ever understand.

Mindfulness, Bliss, and Beyond, A Mediators’ Handbook by Ajahn Brahm
Born Peter Betts, in London, United Kingdom, Ajahn Brahm is a Theravada Buddhist monk. Currently Brahm is the Abbot of Bodhinyana Monastery, in Serpentine, Western Australia

Namaste -- Cathi

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