I love coincidences - references that pop up twice in one day, a song you've been thinking of that comes on the radio, & themes or thoughts that circle around you so you can really soak them in & learn. They always make me feel like I'm on the right path & that I'm exactly where I need to be.
For instance, today, I heard two Stephen Hawking references. It's not everyday that happens so it makes me pay attention. It makes me stop for a minute & I don't think that's a bad thing.
Last night my husband & I watched a really amazing film, Hector and the Search for Happiness. You can stream in on Netflix & I loved it. One of the happiness "lessons" Hector learns is that listening is loving; listening is love. So true. It was my favorite line of the entire film (if you watch have tissues ready!).
And on a drive to meet up with my Mom today, I listened to one of local NPR station's TED Radio Hour. It was called Extrasensory & one part of the show emphasized listening - Julian Treasure: How Can We All Listen Better? How to pay better attention to the sounds & world around us - especially other people. It turns out, we are not so great at listening to one another & it drove home again that listening is love. It's an act of generosity & one of honor. It's a gift.
So I'm going to try & be better at listening. Get out of my own way (which is often what happens when we are "listening" - we are trying to think of our reply) & just listen.
I've also been using the Headspace app for the past 10 days (meditating for 10 days in a row is huge for me!) & it too asks you to listen to the current sounds around you - pay attention, not judge them, but acknowledge them as a part of your space. And those sounds are gifts too - a ceiling fan whirling that keeps me cool, the AC running during a hot summer night, one of my dogs snoring, my husband turning the page of his book. All of the those things are riches beyond belief & if I don't listen for them, pay attention to them - they are lost.
Listening is not only loving, it's an act of gratitude.
ps. Did you know you can donate your voice? This was also a part of the show mentioned above (& one of the Stephen Hawking references - the other was The Simpsons :-); I am fascinated & want to register & see if I can maybe do it too - check out VocalID.