Posts tagged: Quakers

PASSIVE LISTENING TURNS: Quakers, 12-Steps, Sacred Circles

By , November 22, 2008 4:17 pm

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Instant “Ahah!”s #3: Passive Listening Turns: Stop Argument.
Does Passive Listening Work? —
Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director Week Two

Does Passive Listening Work?

Did you have a chance to try Passive Listening turns this week? If so, what was your experience? Please email me.
If you just joined this e-course, see last week’s Instant “Ahah!” #3: Passive Listening Turns Save the World? for an introduction and example of this exercise.

Do you think that everyone could learn this simple protocol starting as children, in school? Do you think it would work, e.g., that, not allowed to interrupt each other, people would “hear” something different that would soften their opposing positions?

Reminds me of the Gestalt Two-Chair procedure where, even for intrapsychic conflict resolution, one has uninterrupted turns for each side, expecting a “softening.”

And, of course, the Quakers have used a no-interruption sharing circle for decision making and conflict resolution for decades.

And, purportedly, at least some Native American tribes used a similar Sacred Circle for conflict resolution and decision making, going around and around the circle for days if needed.

And almost every women’s group I have joined uses this Sharing Circle as a meeting format, each person having an uninterrupted turn.

And, of course, all 12-step meetings have this “no-cross talk” structure.

Why? Because without interruption:

(a) the speaker can refer to the fresh Creative Edge, the bodily-felt sense and create new, fresh words and images out of this “intuitive feel” of the whole situation

(b) the listener can really “hear” what the other is saying, instead of concentrating on grabbing a turn to have their say.

Remember, you want to review Instant “Ahah!” #3 Passive Listening Turns with your significant others when there is no argument, and find a timer, a place, and a neutral signal, like “popcorn,” that everyone will recognize means “sit down, start the timer, and take turns.”

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Dr. Kathy McGuire, Director

Creative Edge Focusing (TM)

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