Why is it ‘all too rare’ for human beings to experience a true meeting of minds, to really ‘connect’, to ‘understand one-another thoroughly’ ? Although we want it – and may even have a yearning for it – there is a fundamental difficulty, even for those of us with similar backgrounds and speaking the same language. We each inhabit a private world, have an inner life we can observe directly through a mysterious faculty we call consciousness – a mind busy with our own sensations, memories, thoughts, feelings, hopes and fears. But we have no direct access to one-another’s private world, we can only guess at it and often our guesses are wrong. It is much easier to misunderstand than to understand one-another.
How then can we make better connections? It depends on the quality of the signals we send to and receive from one-another. One of our signalling methods is conversation, and that is what this book is about – what kind of conversation creates good enough connections for us to live and work successfully and harmoniously together?