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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Tuesday, 6 August 2013


Okay so I was watching a program tonight, and there was a new catch phrase being thrown around to describe a not-so-new, but increasing habit of ignoring other people because one is using their phone…PHUBBING they call it…well if you’re confused it’s a mix of the word ‘phone’ and ‘snubbing’!

I suppose it makes sense…anyway, IMO phubbing has been around for quite a long time…but now it’s so much more prevalent, because so many more people are using smart phones!  It seems now that there are many more young people using technological devices (including phones) than previously AND there are so many older people, who have realised that for them to connect that they too must comply…

Well I’ll admit that I’m blogging about phubbing because it’s current, but also because I think it relates to my current essay topic for study…stay with me because I think you’ll get the correlation!

You see, my essay topic is about listening…no…not just hearing someone, but truly listening!

I have read a challenging article by Jean Stairs* about the ministry of listening; I won’t cover it all here or do it justice, but it has some amazing points…that really IMO aren’t so new…

For example, it’s asserted that few of us actually have the patience, will or time to intentionally listen to another person!

Do you agree?  Well I tell you in all honesty, that I know I have to be intentional in my listening to others, because it is so easy to get distracted!

Stairs talks about listening as being truly present with the other person, and also listening as an act of soul inquiry…

Quite hard hitting is the assertion that a part of being a human is having a story to tell…but one cannot tell it if there’s no-one to listen…yes?  And also that by being listened to, a person knows that THEY EXIST, and that they are a valued CHILD OF GOD!

So how do you rate yourself as a listener?

Are you guilty of phubbing while in other people’s presence?

I worry that our societies are become more and more fragmented, and about people becoming more isolated…technology is great, but we all must fight our natural bent towards narcissism…tell me, is it more important to upload your location, or check your newsfeed while dining with a friend, or to actually connect on a meaningful level with the IRL friend that you are with?

We ALL know the answer…cheers, maybe I’ll see you IRL someday and we can have a real conversation!


* Stairs, Jean. "Soul Inquiry: Evocative Listening for the Soul." In Listening for the Soul, edited  USA: Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2000.


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