The Garden of Hesperides

An Appeal by an Unknown Author


When I ask you to listen to me
and you start to give me advice,
you have not done what I asked.

When I ask you to listen to me
and you begin to tell me why I shouldn't feel that way,
you are trampling on my feelings.

When I ask you to listen to me
and you feel you have to do something to solve my problem,
you have failed me, strange as that may seem.

All I asked was that you listen.
Not talk or do -- just hear me.
I can do for myself, I'm not helpless.
Maybe discouraged and faltering, but not helpless.

When you do something for me that I can,
and need to, do for myself,
you contribute to my fear and weakness.

But, when you accept as a simple fact
that I am feeling what I feel,
no matter how irrational it might be,
then I can stop trying to tell you
and get on with understanding
what is behind this feeling.

And when that is clear,
the answers are obvious and I don't need advice.
Any (irrational) feelings make sense
when we understand what is behind them.

Perhaps that is why prayer works for so many people.
God is silent,
and He doesn't give advice or try to fix things.
He just listens
and lets you work it out for yourself.

So, please listen and just hear me.
And if you want to talk,
wait a minute for your turn.
Then I'll listen to you.

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