Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio's Calling of Saint Matthew depicts the spiritual practice of listening. Levi, the tax collector who will be named Matthew, is seated at a table with four assistants when Jesus appears in the room and summons him with a simple gesture of his hand. Levi's face is illuminated with light from the doorway, but it is a different kind of attention that he responds to. Calls and messages, some of them nonverbal, are always coming to us from all directions. The challenge is to recognize the important ones, which may only be possible when we have learned how to listen.

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