Most people do not listen - to themselves, as well as to others. We are wrapped up in our thoughts because we have been trained to think by ourselves, for ourselves. Separated by personal devices, by exams, by cars, by headphones, by anger, by school desks, by newspapers, by identities, by walls, by hygiene. We divide ourselves and close ourselves off, paying attention only to the partitions which keep us there.
Listening is an act of subterfuge, a dangerous rebellion that brings us back to the real world. It is nothing much, except awareness - the awareness that has been removed over the years to be channeled into productivity and profit. Listening brings profit back to that which is heard - gives power to that which is able to make a sound. To listen is to empower.
Listening comes in many forms, aside from audio. In tai chi, maintaining a connection, we listen through skin and muscle and bone, all the way back to thoughts and the earth. In empathising, we are giving awareness to feelings. Driving and cycling and skiing, we hear the ins and outs of motion and momentum.
To listen is to permit, to encourage, to nurture, and therefore: to love. The soil listens to the seeds. You are listening to me right now. You can listen to anything you want to.