Imagine it is twilight – imagine the northern woods – early spring. It is noisy with reawakening, even at bedtime. Perhaps there is a flock of northbound geese flapping and honking their way toward a lake to put down in.
Or, maybe it is afternoon rush hour – imagine a major metropolis – bursting with cacophony. Perhaps there is the wail of an ambulance siren squeezing an opening between the crush of vehicles.
Or, the small town bustle of evening homecoming – parents rounding up offspring for supper – the occasional howl of protest – the ambient drone of the mower.
Whatever the soundscape, there are possibilities. First, there is the object of hearing, the sounds themselves, where we usually focus. Or, there can be attention on the “me” who is listening. And then, there is the hearing itself – just pure listening – where the object of listening and the listener fold into pure listening – directionless.
Check it out. Watch this video three times (on relatively high volume), first with the emphasis on the object, next with the emphasis on the subject, and then just perceiving ,without perceiver or perception. Finally, turn off the video and open to the soundscape where you are right now as it arises in global listening.