Listening can remain a constant in an ever changing world
This Listening Post has been in a month long pause in its formal listening in our community. And, while we had looked forward to soon returning to our normal schedule of serving in 8 locations in Anchorage and Palmer, that is not yet going to happen. Nor do we have an exact date of when it might happen. All of our locations remain closed at this time.
Yet the need for listening has not gone away. Perhaps that need has even intensified during these times of the ongoing wisdom of social distancing. Many of us are experiencing loss. And loss on a broad spectrum. Some of us will lose, or have lost, loved ones. We may suffer critical illness ourselves. Most, if not every single one of us, have lost a level of normalcy in our familiar lifestyle. Some of us have lost faith or have an increased feeling of insecurity. I, myself, still struggle with waves of anxiety and questions – most of which are unanswerable.
There have been unexpected moments of connection, though. Moments of contact with old friends or contact with distant family members that we never forgot but had lost touch with nonetheless. Perhaps some experience grace and gratitude for the downtime, even though we wouldn’t have chosen it in the form of prescribed social distancing or no longer being able to work.
And listening proves to be a constant – listening to others even if remotely, listening to ourselves, listening to the wisdom of what’s arising now.
While we at the LP are deeply committed to serving others, it does come as a sign of support when there are others who value listening enough to want to learn to listen and ask us for help. We’ve recently had two new requests for volunteer training and are in the process of moving our training to a ‘remote’ format.
The LP has also received a request for help to find other listening organizations. A person in Australia wrote to the LP to see if we knew of any organizations Down Under. Some ‘listening’ correspondence ensued.
Urban Confessional is once again promoting National Listening Day, which is tomorrow 4/11/2020. Urban Confessional, like the Listening Post, has been impacted by social distancing and they are also, like us, looking for ways to still listen yet maintain the healthy standards needed to limit the spread of Coronavirus.
There are other listening organizations, too, that have been exploring ‘remote’ listening – and again, like us, is bumping into some challenges with how to offer that yet maintain privacy for listener and guest. The LP and other listening organizations are all doing our best to meet challenges and remain deeply listening the whole way. We’re all rising to the occasion. Those who have dedicated themselves to serving others understand that none of us can do this on our own. We’re in this together.
If you haven’t already received it, here is the link for Urban Confessional’s National Listening day: https://urbanconfessional.org/free-listening-day-2020
In that link you’ll find recommendations for ways to listen while respecting the need for social distancing. Not surprisingly, the LP’s support for ‘informal’ listening falls into the same categories Urban Confessional suggests.
Personally, I am choosing to host a zoom listening session tomorrow morning. It is late notice, for which I apologize. Still, my intention is to invite any and all who are willing to show up, be present, share if you feel called to, and simple see how it is that we can gather with the intention to listen and to be heard. As host, I will be introducing guidelines similar to a ‘talking circle,’ and welcoming people to begin sharing.
Here is the Zoom link for Avie’s Free Listening on National Listening Day at 10:30am AK time (GMT-8):
All are welcome. If you need a listening ear, please join us. If you want to explore what the practice of listening is, please join us. If you have a listening ear to offer, please join us. Pass the link along if you know of someone who is in need of a listening ear.
(Note to LP volunteers, the above zoom meeting link is different from our monthly meeting link!)
as always, and with a consistency like nothing else I’ve ever experienced,
I offer you my thanks, and our dear Susan offers hers as well,