Sunday, June 21, 2009

Westphal on being a good listener...

"If I am a good listener... I try to hear what is said, but I listen just as hard for what is not said and for what is said between the lines. I am not in a hurry, for there is no pre-appointed destination for the conversation. There is no need to get there, for we are already here; and in this present I am able to be fully present to the one who speaks. The speaker is not an object to be categorized or manipulated, but a subject whose life situation is enough like my own that I can understand it in spite of the differences between us... This does not mean that I never say anything, but I am more likely to ask questions than to issue manifestos or make accusations."

(From "God, Guilt, and Death")

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