Quotations about communication. People are social beings, and we need communication to live in relationship with each other. The challenge of communication is that we are also diverse individuals with different experiences, so what we are trying to communicate may not be exactly what the other person receives.

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To have much learning, to be skillful in handicraft, well-trained in discipline, and to be of good speech — this is the greatest blessing.

— Buddha

When we speak, in gestures or signs, we fashion a real object in the world; the gesture is seen, the words and the song are heard. The arts are simply a kind of writing, which, in one way or another, fixes words or gestures, and gives body to the invisible.

— Alain (Émile-Auguste Chartier)

In describing today’s accelerating changes, the media fire blips of unrelated information at us. Experts bury us under mountains of narrowly specialized monographs. Popular forecasters present lists of unrelated trends, without any model to show us their interconnections or the forces likely to reverse them. As a result, change itself comes to be seen as anarchic, even lunatic.

— Alvin Toffler

Though Buddhism is a religion like any other, it began with at least two specific characteristics that were quite unusual, to wit, its foundational agnosticism and its commitment to public communication and discussion.

— Amartya Sen

Heaven, n.: A place where the wicked cease from troubling you with talk of their personal affairs, and the good listen with attention while you expound your own.

— Ambrose Bierce

There is an endless net of threads throughout the universe…
At every crossing of the threads there is an individual.
And every individual is a crystal bead.
And every crystal bead reflects
Not only the light from every other crystal in the net
But also every other reflection
Throughout the entire universe.

— Anne Adams, an adaptation of one of the oldest written creations of humanity: “The Net of Jewels, or Indra’s Net”

If you can’t protect yourself with talk, you won’t be alive to protect yourself with guns.

— Arthur Boyd

There are no new ideas. There are only new ways of making them felt.

— Audre Lorde

Living with integrity means: Not settling for less than what you know you deserve in your relationships. Asking for what you want and need from others. Speaking your truth, even though it might create conflict or tension. Behaving in ways that are in harmony with your personal values. Making choices based on what you believe, and not what others believe.

— Barbara De Angelis

A good laugh makes any interview, or any conversation, so much better.

— Barbara Walters

To truly love we must learn to mix various ingredients — care, affection, recognition, respect, commitment, and trust, as well as honest and open communication.

— bell hooks

We are more connected than ever before, more able to spread our ideas and beliefs, our anger and fears. As we exercise the right to advocate our views, and as we animate our supporters, we must all assume responsibility for our words and actions before they enter a vast echo chamber and reach those both serious and delirious, connected and unhinged.

— Bill Clinton

People often silence themselves, or “agree to disagree” without fully exploring the actual nature of the disagreement, for the sake of protecting a relationship and maintaining connection. But when we avoid certain conversations, and never fully learn how the other person feels about all of the issues, we sometimes end up making assumptions that not only perpetuate but deepen misunderstandings, and that can generate resentment.

— Brené Brown

Loneliness does not come from having no people around you, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to you.

— Carl Jung

Loneliness does not come from having no people about one, but from being unable to communicate the things that seem important to oneself, or from holding certain views which others find inadmissible.

— Carl Jung

I’ve found that if I say what I’m really thinking and feeling, people are more likely to say what they really think and feel. The conversation becomes a real conversation.

— Carol Gilligan

When you have nothing to say, say nothing.

— Charles Caleb Colton

I just come and talk to the plants, really–very important to talk to them, they respond I find.

— Charles III of the United Kingdom

Isn’t it strange that we talk least about the things we think about the most.

— Charles Lindbergh

How can we speak to each other like equals when one of us is holding a gun?

— Cliff James, Life As A Kite

Music may be the activity that prepared our pre-human ancestors for speech communication and for the very cognitive, representational flexibility necessary to become humans.

— Daniel J. Levitin

The greatest problem in communication is the illusion that it has been accomplished.

— Daniel W. Davenport

There are many controversial topics out there – abortion, nuclear weapons, the 2nd Amendment, guns, whatever, the war in Iraq. You’re going to be on one side, somebody’s going to be on the other side. Invite those people to the table. Sit down and talk.

— Daryl Davis

Yet, in spite of this world-wide system of linkages, there is, at this very moment, a general feeling that communication is breaking down everywhere, on an unparalleled scale.

— David Bohm

Communication is a continual balancing act, juggling the conflicting needs for intimacy and independence. To survive in the world, we have to act in concert with others, but to survive as ourselves, rather than simply as cogs in a wheel, we have to act alone.

— Deborah Tannen

For most women, the language of conversation is primarily a language of rapport: a way of establishing connections and negotiating relationships.

— Deborah Tannen

The fantastic advances in the field of electronic communication constitute a greater danger to the privacy of the individual.

— Earl Warren

Communication does not depend on syntax, or eloquence, or rhetoric, or articulation but on the emotional context in which the message is being heard.

— Edwin H. Friedman

The colossal misunderstanding of our time is the assumption that insight will work with people who are unmotivated to change. Communication does not depend on syntax, or eloquence, or rhetoric, or articulation but on the emotional context in which the message is being heard. People can only hear you when they are moving toward you, and they are not likely to when your words are pursuing them. Even the choices words lose their power when they are used to overpower. Attitudes are the real figures of speech.

— Edwin H. Friedman

While you are proclaiming peace with your lips, be careful to have it even more fully in your heart.

— Francis of Assisi
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