Communication / by kevin murray

Communication is far more than the simple verbal communication that we often believe is the be-all and end-all of our communications.  Communication between one human to another is far more complicated and nuanced than just hearing the words that are spoken, or speaking the words that are heard.  Not only is it that the same word, or the same sentence, can have different connotations depending on how the words are spoken, this is also true depending on the intimacy of the participants in a conversation, or the environment of said conversation.  That is why when we overhear a conversation between two people that we are strangers to, our interpretation of what they have just said can be widely inaccurate, even though we have clearly heard their words.


Additionally, in communication there are certain non-verbal or simple affirmations that are expected from the other party that is participating in the conversation and when these clues are absent or are not at the level that we are expecting, we believe, often correctly, that the other party is not listening to us or paying full attention to what we are communicating to them.  Within communication there is a quid pro quo that is expected and desired, and those that do not adhere to these common standards will over a relatively short period of time become marginalized, because everyone that communicates with you believes that what they have to say is at a minimum, important to them, if not to you.


Paying close attention to what your partner is saying, how they are saying it, and what they are trying to convey, and then responding in such a manner to them that confirms that you have indeed been attentive, will make you a very good friend.  To determine how good of a listener you are, you only basically have to ask yourself, how often have you have heard the words "you aren't listening to me", when, in fact, your belief is that you have listened, and listened quite well.


Communication is a very valued skill and not all communication is conveyed through the spoken word, as we learn through Luke 8:45: "and Jesus said, Who touched me? When all denied, Peter and they that were with him said, Master, the multitude throng thee and press thee, and sayest thou, Who touched me?" In which a woman eventually admits that she did touch the Master, a special touch, a healing touch, that joined the two together, with the result that immediately upon touching Christ that she was healed, in which Jesus perceived within Him that virtue had gone forth from Him, and that the woman's faith had made her whole.  This is communication at its most sublime level in which the seeker has found their desired sanctuary, because of their belief and their pureness in pursuing it.


Humans have an intense desire to communicate effectively, it is a way of gaining and trading information, knowledge, and intimacy with others, and brings clarity and better meaning to life.  It is also, a skill set, and like many things in life, you get out of it about what you put into it.