Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

Listening

"Those who speak always and those who never speak are equally unfit for friendship. A good proportion of the talent of listening and speaking is the base of social virtues." - Johann Kaspar Lavater

"Listen to your conscience, for you may be listening to God." - J. H. Rhodes, fully John Harold Rhodes

"One of the best ways to persuade others it with your ears - by listening to them" -

"Live among men as if God were watching. Talk to God as if men were listening." -

"The art of conversation consists as much in listening politely, as in talking agreeably." -

"The situation of our youth is not mysterious. Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. They must, they have no other models." -

"The child's entire life is influenced by his ability to listen. Good listening habits make it possible for him to broaden his knowledge, enjoy music, conversation, storytelling, drama; discriminating listening makes it possible for him to select radio and television programs for enjoyment. Critical listening helps him function intelligently in selection of governmental leaders. It is quite possible that the ability to listen effectively may be one of the most valuable tools he can use in his efforts to bring understanding and peace to the world." - Lucile Cypreansen

"I have suggested that listening requires something more than remaining mute while looking attentive, namely, it requires the ability to attend imaginatively the another's language. Actually, in listening we speak the others' words." - Leslie H. Farber

"Every individual is a king in the castle of his own mind. As king of his thoughts he can think those thought which will make him an unhappy and fearful monarch, or he can make his reign joyous and harmonious by listening to the Father within himself before making decisions." - Lowell Fillmore

"It is one of the many paradoxes of psychology that the pursuit of happiness defeats its own purpose. We find happiness only when we do not directly seek it. An analogy will make this clear. In listening to music at a concert, we experience pleasurable feelings only so long as our attention is directed towards the music. But if in order to increase our happiness we give all our attention to our subjective feeling of happiness, it vanishes. Nature contrives to make it impossible for anyone to attain happiness by turning into himself." - James Hadfield, fully Captain James Arthur Hadfield

"I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen." - Ernest Hemingway, fully Ernest Miller Hemingway

"Listening is a magnetic and strange thing, a creative force. The friends who listen to us are the ones we move toward, and we want to sit in their radius. When we are listened to, it creates us, makes us unfold and expand." -

"The magic of listening brings us closer to the central core of the universe. To begin to comprehend... life it is not sufficient to touch and see." - Yehudi Menuhin, fully Sir Yehudi Menuhin, Baron Menuhin

"There is a divinity that shapes our ends - but we can help by listening for Its voice." - Kathleen Norris

"Today, thanks to technical progress, the radio and television, to which we devote so many of the leisure hours once spent listening to parlor chatter and parlor music, have succeeded in lifting the manufacture of banality out of the sphere of handicraft and placed it in that of a major industry." - Nathalie Sarraute, fully Nathalie Tcherniak Sarraute

"Real communication is impossible without listening." - Ralph C. Smedley

"When you stop learning, stop listening, stop looking and asking questions, always new questions, then it is time to die." - Lillian Smith, fully Lillian Eugenia Smith

"Each of us carries about a great many 'truths' with which we are not only comfortable but which we consider sacrosanct. These 'truisms' can be things we learned at our parent's knee... idealities we have nurtured over the years... or prejudices we have hugged to ourselves over a period of time. More often than not, our personal convictions take precedence over antithetical arguments. This is why most people are not good listeners. They hear another person's thesis but simultaneously they form an argument to back their own belief. The result is that they really aren't listening. They are simply hearing. And they mentally counter what it is they choose to hear." - Greta Woodrew, Pseud. for Greta Andron Smolowe

"Purpose is about developing relationships. Purpose is about bringing attention and intention into the present moment, moving ahead with new ideas, giving and receiving support, volunteering, mentoring, listening to the imagination and intuition, communicating, taking action based on inner direction and hints from the external, being adaptable, taking responsibility and ending the victim stance forever surrendering to the divine will and working with the lessons developing fluidity, tolerance, compassion, and the ability to love." - Carol Adrienne

"The situation of our youth is not mysterious. Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them. They must, they have no other models." - James Baldwin, fully James Arthur Baldwin

"Children have never been very good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them." - James Baldwin, fully James Arthur Baldwin

"We cannot live in a world that is not our own, in a world that is interpreted for us by others. An interpreted world is not a home. Part of the terror is to take back our own listening, to use our own voice, to see our own light." - Hildegard Von Bingen, Blessed Hildegard of Bingen, Saint Hildegard

"It is a man listening through a tornado for the Still Small Voice… a soul standing in awe before the mystery of the Universe… a hungry heart seeking for love… Time flowing into Eternity… IT is a man climbing the altar stairs to God." - Dwight Bradley

"Listening, not imitation, may be the sincerest form of flattery. Trust your hunches. They’re usually based on facts filed away just below the conscious level." - Joyce Brothers

"While the right to talk may be the beginning of freedom, the necessity of listening is what makes the right important." -

"Listening is a form of accepting." - Stella Terrill Mann

"One of the best ways to persuade others is with your ears – by listening to them." - Dean Rusk, fully David Dean Rusk

"Prayer begins by talking to God, but it ends by listening to Him." - Fulton Sheen, fully Archbishop Fulton John Sheen

"Don’t judge. Just hear what the person has to say. Thoughtfully consider its meaning for him. When you attend to another’s speech in this way, you may come to recognize the miracle of words. This is sacred listening. To such an ear, story, in all of its forms, is transformed into a melodious language. When the listener is this receptive, both he and the teller are elevated to a new realm of communication. This is the foundation of building trust and safety in any relationship." - Richard “Rick” Stone

"Real listening is the creation of a sacred space in which another’s words are contained and transformed into hallowed speech. Like remembering, this form of listening is also intentional." - Richard “Rick” Stone

"Healing depends on listening with the inner ear - stopping the incessant blather, and listening." - Marion Woodman

"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." -

"Our culture of discussion in our region is to debate, to know the truth, and try to prove to the other one how they are mistaken - and it's not really helpful. Listening compassionately can enable us to let the other person reveal and discover what is really there." -

"I will spend time with those I love. My spouse, my children, my family. A man can own the world but be poor for the lack of love. A man can own nothing and yet be wealthy in relationships. Today I will spend at least five minutes with the significant people in my world. Five quality minutes of talking or hugging or thanking or listening. Five undiluted minutes with my mate, children, and friends." - Max Lucado

"The simplest way of listening to music is to listen for the sheer pleasure of the musical sound itself." - Aaron Copland

"The simplest way of listening to music is to listen for the sheer pleasure of the musical sound itself." -

"The simplest way of listening to music is to listen for the sheer pleasure of the musical sound itself." -

"A man who listens because he has nothing to say can hardly be a source of inspiration. The only listening that counts is that of the talker who alternatively absorbs and expresses ideas." - Agnes Repplier

"A man who listens because he has nothing to say can hardly be a source of inspiration. The only listening that counts is that of the talker who alternatively absorbs and expresses ideas." -

"A man who listens because he has nothing to say can hardly be a source of inspiration. The only listening that counts is that of the talker who alternatively absorbs and expresses ideas." -

"People love to talk but hate to listen. Listening is not merely not talking, though even that is beyond most of our powers; it means taking a vigorous, human interest in what is being told us. You can listen like a blank wall or like a splendid auditorium where every sound comes back fuller and richer." - Alice Duer Miller

"People love to talk but hate to listen. Listening is not merely not talking, though even that is beyond most of our powers; it means taking a vigorous, human interest in what is being told us. You can listen like a blank wall or like a splendid auditorium where every sound comes back fuller and richer." - Alice Duer Miller

"When men hear imitations, even apart from the rhythms and tunes themselves, their feelings move in sympathy. Since then music is a pleasure, and virtue consists in rejoicing and loving and hating aright, there is clearly nothing which we are so much concerned to acquire and to cultivate as the power of forming right judgments and of taking delight in good dispositions and noble actions. Rhythm and melody supply imitations of anger and gentleness, and also of courage and temperance, and of all the qualities contrary to these, and of the other qualities of character, which hardly fall short of the actual affections, as we know form our own experience, for in listening to such strains our souls undergo a change. The habit of feeling pleasure or pain at mere representation is not far removed from the same feeling about realities." - Aristotle NULL

"It is easier to understand a nation by listening to its music than by learning its language." - Author Unknown NULL

"Children spend too little time listening to their elders but too much time attempting to imitate them." - Author Unknown NULL

"We are always doing something, talking, reading, listening to the radio, planning what next. The mind is kept naggingly busy on some easy, unimportant external thing all day." - Brenda Ueland

"Wisdom is the tears of experience, the bridge of experience and imagination over time. It is the listening heart, the melancholy sigh, the distillation of despair to provide a realistic, if often despondent, view of the world." - Daniel Bell

"I can foresee a day when education will routinely include inculcating essential human competencies such as self-awareness, self-control, and empathy, and the arts of listening, resolving conflicts, and cooperation." - Daniel Goleman

"What interferes with listening... is that thought jumps in very fast with a word and all its associations, which then goes so fast that thought takes that to be direct perception." -