Constructive Living: Unpublished Texts Series #1

I have received permission and will be periodically posting excerpts from unpublished Constructive Living texts written by David K. Reynolds. Today’s piece is from the “Reflections” section of Reynolds’s book The Ears Have It.

The Ears Have It
David K. Reynolds

You cannot expect to understand the depths of these writings without help. Please don’t misunderstand; it is not my help that you need. It is the same help that inspired the production of these writings that will inspire your understanding of them. Understanding is acquired through donations of a mysterious benefactor. The benefactor goes by many names, none of which is, or even can be, descriptive. It is useless to try to stick gummed labels on air. Too many of us try to do so. Outlines and metaphors are equally futile. So just listen to the air, the space, the silent voice.

Listening is more important than speaking. Some people have the mistaken notion that they create reality with their thinking and speaking. Such ignorant arrogance is immediately exposed by an earthquake or flood or plane crash. Cancer cannot be vanquished by proper thoughts. But you can listen to cancer and what comes along with it. While utilizing proper medical arts learn from whatever comes to you. In order to learn you must listen.

When you know how to listen you won’t be fooled, not even by your listening itself. Proper listening doesn’t permit fooling or being fooled, although it allows becoming a fool. So sit quietly and listen. You may go to a corner of the room and corner yourself. Sometimes you will be “just listening.”

All creative authors practice listening some of the time. So do creative painters and musicians and others. Without listening nothing worthwhile emerges. The difficult part is to avoid imposing yourself on the listening. The trick is to get out of the way, to dissolve into the listening. Can you hear me?

More precisely, we cannot actively listen. Something listens us. Our work is to get out of that “something’s” way. So we cannot take credit for listening. Again, more precisely, we cannot even take credit for getting out of the way. Something gets us out of the way. We have to allow that activity to happen. More precisely, something allows us to allow that activity to happen. Can you see the infinite regress here? Happenings happen.

For a comprehensive list of all of David K. Reynolds’s unpublished books, please visit: Constructive Living.

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