Do We Listen, When we Listen and How We Listen? That is the Question.

A new friend recently moved into our community from across the globe. How could we connect and what could be the cement of our connection? I have learned that I cannot take any assumptions I might make as facts. Every individual is unique and has unique issues, joys, and concerns. My first step is to call, to show interest in knowing, and to get engage in conversation about what they care about. The rest will happen in an organic process of giving and taking.

 

I have learned from my own work that personal connection in order to listen first and then talk about how we care about the other and what is important to them, is one of the most powerful cement that bonds hearts and creates a wave of goodwill. The Baha’i community at large is preparing itself for one of its most timely teachings; living the oneness of humanity and learning in its process.

 

In an article by the Baha’i International Community published Dec 3, 18 called:

Contributing to social transformation—reflections on Baha’i participation in discourses

 

The following statement grabbed my attention:

No matter the setting, Baha’is are learning to contribute insights and experiences that are relevant to the profound challenges facing humanity today. In so doing, they strive to adopt a posture of humility, engage in genuine conversation, generously contribute relevant Baha’i principles, and learn with and from other like-minded individuals and groups.

In the absence of the role and position of the clergy in the Baha’i Faith, the task of nurturing personal connection deserves examination and conversation. The Baha’i community has an opportunity as well as a challenge to create frames where every individual feels a sense of belonging and is loved for whatever contribution they might bring to the community. How can we conduct ourselves so that every person feels celebrated, loved, cherished, treasured, and important? That to me as a Baha’i psychotherapist who is privileged to hear the cares and concerns of the community at large, is the question.

 

The word Shepard is associated with Guiding, protection, and nurturing, Both Baha’u’llah and Abdu’l-Baha referred to themselves as father figures. Shoghi Effendi signed his letters as your true brother Shoghi As Baha’is who are we to each other? what is the job description for who we claim to be? What is our expectation from our friends, community, and institutions, and what role do we play in this organic global community? Do we feel united? Do we feel loved? How do you show you care? When do you feel others care? Like everything man does, our conversation has two important parts: The form and the spirit. The form is the word, the spirit is about the heart, whether our words are fragrant or they stink!! When it comes to communication, there are lots of things to consider, like body language, facial expressions, tone and pitch of your voice, the time and place to talk, the capacity and readiness of the person who hears you, and how people feel when you talk and do they want to hear you and what you have to say. This talking and listening course will guide you, step-by-step, through the whole process.

 

Baha’u’llah guides humanity in this crucial process:

 

I have learned from my own work that personal connection in order to listen first and then talk about how we care about the other and what is important to them, is one of the most powerful cement that bonds hearts and creates a wave of goodwill. The Baha’i community at large is preparing itself for one of its most timely teachings; living the oneness of humanity and learning in its process.

 

In an article by the Baha’i International Community published Dec 3, 18 called:

Contributing to social transformation—reflections on Baha’i participation in discourses

 

The following statement grabbed my attention:

Utterance must needs possess penetrating power. For if bereft of this quality it would fail to exert influence. And this penetrating influence dependeth on the spirit being pure and the heart stainless. Likewise it needeth moderation, without which the hearer would be unable to bear it, rather he would manifest opposition from the very outset. And moderation will be obtained by blending utterance with the tokens of divine wisdom which are recorded in the sacred Books and Tablets. Thus when the essence of one’s utterance is endowed with these two requisites it will prove highly effective and will be the prime factor in transforming the souls of men. This is the station of supreme victory and celestial dominion. Whoso attaineth thereto is invested with the power to teach the Cause of God and to prevail over the hearts and minds of men.

(Tablets of Bahá’u’lláh, pp. 198-199)

Now this is what I call power only unique to human kind!

Keyvan Geula is a licensed Marriage, Family, and Child Therapist; LMFT. She received her Master of Science in Marriage, family, and Child Therapy from the University of La Verne, in La Verne, California. She employs the latest research in behavioral sciences, neuroscience, and the Baha’i principle of the oneness of all humanity to serve the well-being of her clients.

She offers her services as a clinician, lecturer, trainer, and supervisor to a global set of clients in person and online. In her clinical work, she incorporates the wisdom of the Baha’i Writings, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy research, Mindfulness meditation, and consultation skills, as well as knowledge of the spiritual self.

She is an adjunct professor of Behavioral Sciences at Citrus Community College, faculty of continued education at Claremont Graduate University. She teaches psychology online to students at Baha’i Institute of Higher Education.

She is the Founder and Executive Director of Center for Global Integrated Education (CGIE), a non-profit Baha’i-inspired educational organization, which explores oneness of all humanity, and teaches the integrated mind-body-spirit approach in education.

She has served for two years as the producer and host of a two-hour weekly live radio show for the Persian community in Sothern, California focusing on the role of the psychology of spirituality in personal and social transformation, creativity, emotional and social intelligence, and a greater sense of harmony in a global society. She also has been the host and producer of TV series called Transforming Human Consciousness for eight years. She regularly writes and blogs on www.cgie.org/blog on topics related to integrated education, the oneness of humanity, the powers of the human spirit in the betterment of global society, elimination of all prejudice, equality of women and men, and education reform. Some of her shows are posted on her; Keyvan Geula YouTube Channel.

Mrs. Geula has served in several Baha’i institutions since her youth in Iran and USA.

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