Practicing the Art of Compassionate Listening


By Andrea Cohen, with Leah Green and Susan Partnow

This practical “how to” book provides a step-by-step approach to helping you implement the practices of Compassionate Listening into your daily life. Whether you’re challenged by self-judgments – or by conflicts in your family, workplace or community, the practices of Compassionate Listening can provide a solid foundation upon which to bring greater peace, understanding and healing into your world. The exercises in this book are based on the core practices of Compassionate Listening as taught in our Basic Intensive training and are geared toward increasing your ability to do the following:



  • Listen to yourself and others with greater compassion
  • Avoid the pitfalls of defensiveness and blame in the heat of conflict
  • Intervene in conflict in a way that adds the wisdom of heart-to-heart listening to the equation
  • Create a safe and respectful environment that supports honest expression of thoughts and feelings
  • Step into the shoes of another person so you can truly understand the other’s perspective

People wanting to understand more about the theory of Compassionate Listening are invited to read Carol Hwoschinsky’s Listening with the Heart: a Guidebook to Compassionate Listening.


With an economy of words, Andrea Cohen masters the how-to of human relationships that really work. She clarifies like no one else how the art of listening-to-learn is transforming despair into successful engagement at home and among nations — so much closer at hand than most people would imagine.

Libby Traubman, BA, MSW and Len Traubman, DDS, MSD, Co-founders, Jewish-Palestinian Living Room Dialogue

I endorse the program for Compassionate Listening. It’s very important to begin efforts to try to heal the world, and we need to know that we have the potential and the power to do that.

Dennis Kucinich, United States Congressman

Finally, a heartful way for us all to benefit from the pioneering work of the Compassionate Listening Project. Andrea Cohen, with Leah Green and Susan Partnow, provides this groundbreaking invitation to living more compassionately with ourselves and others. Read this so we can use Compassionate Listening where we need it most—in our daily lives!

Pastor Don Mackenzie, Rabbi Ted Falcon and Sheikh Jamal Rahman, the Interfaith Amigos, authors of “Getting to the Heart of Interfaith.”

I believe if human beings practiced the skills and philosophy laid out in this robustly comprehensive handbook, we could co-create together a true “Heaven on Earth.”

Linda Wolf, Founder/ED Teen Talking Circles

Table of Contents

This book describes the five core practices of Compassionate Listening and offers ways to practice them through a combination of theory, exercises and take-away suggestions.

This 84-page book is divided into the following chapters:

  • Forward
  • What is Compassionate Listening?
  • Listening Basics
  • How the Heart Matters
  • Bridging and Inquiry
  • Conflict as Opportunity
  • Judgment and Blame
  • The Drama Triangle
  • Productive Dialogue
  • Afterword
  • Appreciation

Purchase Practicing the Art of Compassionate Listening from the Compassionate Listening online store.

Copyright © 1998-2018 The Compassionate Listening Project.