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Learning to Listen

March 7, 2012

I end my book, Looking for Don: A Meditation, with the following.

I remember what he said on January 15, 2009, at the ICU of the Columbia Presbyterian Hospital three days prior to his final departure. “Dai Sil, Listen to me carefully. Because you don’t listen carefully, you often misunderstand me.”

Everything has changed for me since he left. Nothing is the same since he closed his eyes. Hazel green eyes, laughing eyes, eyes shiny with compassion, eyes that spoke love to me in silence.

Now I am learning to hear him in silence.  Now Don is teaching me how to listen. I know it will take enormous patience. That’s another thing–I was so impatient with him. I realize listening and patience are related.

Spring turns to Summer, then to Autumn but I am ready. Memories return and take me to the reservoir of love where nothing is separated.

As I am trying to learn how to listen, I introduce you to a poem by the great Sufi master of Persia, Hafiz (given name, Shams-ud-din Muhammad, 1320-1389). It comes from The Gift, translated by Daniel Ladinsky.

 How Do I Listen?


Do I

 Listen to others?

 As if everyone were my Master

 Speaking to me






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  1. Joseph Brennan permalink

    Lovely and inspiring and something to aspire to – I would also add leaning to listen to self (Self) is also important.

    • thanks for your insightful comment. yes, yes, yes, it is important to learn to listen to one’s innermost self.

      Dai Sil

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