Listening to the Other: a new approach to counselling and listening skills by Caroline Braziers is a worthy subject. Though being a good listener sounds easy, the art requires considerable training. Listening is a powerful method of caring and supporting someone who is in need of quality time and attention. When a person feels that another person has understood their pain, loss or unhappiness, they are often able to let go of the past and move on. Many useful exercises are provided.
Caroline Brazier comes from a Methodist Christian background and holds a Masters degree in counselling. She is an ordained Buddhist minister and lectures worldwide. She works with the Amida Trust and Training Institute based in Leicestershire and North London and has written a number of books with her husband, David. I was particularly impressed with the Japanese Buddhist influence, called Nei Quan which has an unusual perspective for us Westerners, but is, no doubt, a powerful tool for personal growth and spiritual development. Nei Quan focuses on creating autonomy and achievement and it also confronts those who feel disillusioned or dissatisfied with their lot in life. For instance, it is asked of those examining their first three years of life: What did your mother do for you? What did you do for her in return? What trouble did you cause? Powerful stuff, eh? .
Initial review by Wendy Stokes, October 2009 – Wendy is a local writer for New Age magazines.