Cultural Proficiency

The Lost Art Of Listening

Are You A Good Listener?

Cultural Proficiency Training
Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr. was a Baptist minister and social activist, who led the Civil Rights Movement in the United States from the mid-1950s until his death by assassination in 1968. Martin Luther King Jr. was born on January 15, 1929, in Atlanta, Georgia. King, both a Baptist minister and civil-rights activist, had a seismic impact on race relations in the United States, beginning in the mid-1950s. Among many efforts, King headed the SCLC. Through his activism, he played a pivotal role in ending the legal segregation of Black American citizens in the South and other areas of the nation, as well as the creation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. King received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964, among several other honors. King was assassinated in April 1968, and continues to be remembered as one of the most lauded Black American leaders in history, often referenced by his 1963 speech, "I Have a Dream."

Listen To Learn

It sometimes seems that everyone on the planet has heard Dr. King's "I Have A Dream" speech. However, while many may have heard Dr. King speak, I wonder how many have truly listened to him and heard the values in his heart. Hearing isn't necessarily listening, nor is it necessarily listening well. As G.K. Chesterton said "there's a lot of difference between hearing and listening." The truth is, many people come to conversations with their own agendas. And just because you're quiet and you let others do "X" percent of the talking, doesn't mean you're a good listener. Nor does it mean you've mastered the art of listening. To master the art of listening you need to halt any "good thoughts" that come to mind and let the person say everything they need to say. In other words, listen without forming responses in your mind. The art of listening isn't simply about staying quiet, it's also about asking questions. These questions are for clarification, or for further explanation so that you can fully understand what the speaker is telling you. To effectively master the art of listening it's extremely important to withhold any negative evaluations or judgements. Make it your goal to be open minded. As Diogenes Laertius said: "We have two (2) ears and only one (1) tongue in order that we may hear more and speak less." The art of listening is an invaluable life skill. Not only will it help you communicate better with your friends and family, but it will help you become effective in reaching cultures outside of our own.

Test Your Ability To listen … 

The seven (7) question quiz below is a simple test to see if your hearing or listening to Dr. King. The video is two (2) minutes in length and you can play it over and over again as you like. Ideally, you will have one of our instructors in the room with you where you can ask questions after listening to the video and before taking this quiz. However, if this is not the case, there is still value in taking the quiz. Enjoy.Top

For Your Consideration:

Remember "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care." — Theodore Roosevelt


James 1:19 (ERV) …

"My dear brothers and sisters, always be more willing to listen than to speak. Keep control of your anger." Top


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