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“A Listening Heart”*

November 19, 2017

Here are two more  “Small Things Are Big Things” true stories, with the same message.

Dr.Viktor Frankl, who is very well-known for his compelling book, “Man’s Search For Meaning”* tells a very interesting story.  A patient (he was a psychiatrist) once phoned him in the middle of the night to tell him, that she was about to commit suicide. He spoke to her for two hours.  He gave her every reason to live that you can imagine giving. Finally, she said that she had changed her mind and would not commit suicide. The next time he saw her, he asked her which of the things he said convinced her to change her mind.  “None,” she replied. “Why then did you decide not to commit suicide?” She replied that the mere fact that someone cared enough to listen to her for two hours in the middle of the night was all that it took.

When King David was dying he appointed his son Solomon to be the heir to his throne.  Solomon was only twelve years old and as you can imagine, was quite anxious about becoming King.  G-d appeared to King Solomon in a dream (1 Kings 3: 9) and asked him what he would like to have as the King.  He could have asked for more treasure, a larger population to rule over, more territory to rule over, a greater army, etc.  The one and only thing Solomon asked for was a listening heart”

P.S. If you haven’t read this book, then consider it a homework assignment

* “An Oldie But Goodie”

Heart and Soul

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Steven permalink
    November 20, 2017 10:00 am

    A great reminder. Thanks

  2. Matt permalink
    November 19, 2017 9:20 am

    Nice thoughts to live by, again. Thanks Freddy!

  3. jocko permalink
    November 19, 2017 8:15 am

    Thank you, Fred. I love those stories.

    As a young cop working in the Tenderloin, I was pretty overwhelmed with the despair that was the norm there. I was lucky enough to have seen that a kind word or gesture could often matter way more than any “official” help we could offer.

    I know it helped me not to burn out–and I believe it lightened an awful load for folks who had ended up there.

    You mentioned “Man’s Search for Meaning” after spin class, the first night you and I met around 10 or 15 years ago. That book and your friendship have been a great help. May you be happy. May you be well. Jocko

    • Fred Fox permalink*
      November 19, 2017 9:09 am

      Thank you very much! Your friendship is invaluable, and your example is as well

  4. Alison permalink
    November 19, 2017 7:20 am

    Warms my heart to read these stories. What a different world we could live in if we all practiced a listening heart. This is a good homework assignment!

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