I stumbled on a story in National Geographic, called Planet Walker Wants to Hear What You Have to Say by David Maxwell Braun . I am ashamed to admit I had never heard of this gentleman. It is an interesting account of a young man who, in 1971, witnessed an oil spill in San Francisco Bay. This experience awakened an awareness within him, which sparked an idea and started him on a journey that would carry him across the U.S. and around the world.
Poking around a little more, I found this TED Talk.
To me, the lesson is only partly about the environment and the avoidance of crude oil, though admirable and worthwhile; instead, it is a lesson in silence. It is true that we human creatures listen to reply, not to understand.
Silence and the art of listening to understand empowers us to recognize when we must listen and then, through understanding, know when it is our responsibility to speak.
I hope you enjoy. I am now going to go look for his book.