prepared by Fr Michael Whelan sm
The art of asking open questions can help with true conversation.
An open question is a question which I ask but do not answer.
Learn to just listen!
Practice asking yourself open questions as you go about your day:
What is happening here?
What is happening inside me?
What is happening between us?
What am I feeling?
What might he/she be feeling?
Open questioning will often surface obstacles to relationships.
Simply face what surfaces, ask the next open question and listen.
Resist the temptation to analyze.
Trust the truth of it.
The truth will set you free!
“Life is not so much beginnings and endings as it is middles, middles that don’t measure up — and our happiness depends on how we come to terms with the pale reflections of our dreams.
(Paul D. Zimmerman, “Middles and Muddles,” Newsweek, September 27, 1971, 106)
(To be said each morning)
“Lord, keep my heart always set on You today,
so that from it will flow the springs of life.
Protect me from crooked speech,
and put devious talk far from me.
Let my eyes look directly forward,
and my gaze be straight before you.
Keep straight the path of my feet,
and all my ways will be sure.
Let me not swerve to the right or to the left;
turn my feet away from evil. Amen”
(Adapted from Proverbs 4:23-27)
“We exist solely for this, to be the place He has chosen for His presence, His manifestation in the world, His epiphany.”
Thomas Merton: Spiritual Master – The Essential Writings, edited by Lawrence S Cunningham, Paulist Press, 1992, 425