When we truly listen to others, we provide places in our minds and hearts for them. This is one of the most important forms of hospitality.
Only then can we get to know them. Only then can we empathize and sympathize. Only then can we begin to love them as distinct persons.
So listening gets us outside of ourselves and into relationships. When we don’t listen to one another we become ships passing on foggy nights, barely able to see the names on our hulls, let alone to hear others’ mayday calls.