Beans in our Ears
Most of us have learned the prevailing form of listening in our society. Much of the time we don't really listen. Rather than listen to connect deeply with the experience of another, we listen to reply. Rather than listen with undivided attention, we are often thinking of what we are going to say next.
As a matter of habit, we automatically analyze, compare, judge, often immediately relating it to an associated personal experience. On automatic pilot, we seek to advise, counsel, or otherwise react without a deep awareness of what is really going on -- either inside ourselves or the other person. As a result, whole realms of emotional and intuitive energies remain beneath the level of our awareness. Rather than really connect, we often end up bouncing of one another.