Listening Your Way to the Moment
An excerpt from Working on Yourself Doesn’t Work
by Ariel & Shya Kane

One way to access the moment is to truly hear what others are saying. If you listen newly to each individual conversation, the act of listening can shift your life instantaneously. It does this by pulling you into the moment. And the moment is magic. Transformation happens when one gets into the current moment of now. Here is an example:

A man named Cecil was walking down Second Avenue in Manhattan one Monday evening and noticed our poster announcing an Instantaneous Transformation evening seminar. Intrigued, he came in and joined us. A rather private man, Cecil sat quietly toward the back of the room. Over the course of the evening different people stood and spoke about what was happening in their lives. One of these was a man in his early sixties, Glenn, who asked a question about the Second Principle of Instantaneous Transformation. We will present the Three Principles of Instantaneous Transformation in depth in the chapters ahead, but let us just say here that we were discussing how you can only physically be where you are in any given moment.

During this conversation we talked about how no two things can occupy the same space at the same time; in other words, no two people could be seated in the exact same chair at the exact same moment. In fact, from moment to moment, you can only be where you are and how you are. This includes your body sensations, emotions, thoughts, feelings, and life circumstances. (Again, this is the Second Principle of Instantaneous Transformation.) As the discussion continued, we talked with Glenn about how he could only be standing and having this conversation with us in that moment. He might have the thought he could be in Hawaii, for instance, but in reality he was in New York City. Cecil heard the discussion and had a direct experience of the truth of it.

One week later, Cecil returned. And here is what he had to say: “Hello, Ariel and Shya. Hello, everyone, my name is Cecil and I didn’t speak last week but I listened and something remarkable has happened. I feel so free – free in a way that I never felt before. Let me explain: I come from South Africa, and two years ago my mother fell ill and she died and I was unable to be with her. I have had such tremendous guilt, such heaviness and pain. Every day I was so hard on myself that I wasn’t there to hold her hand at the time of her passing. I had been berating myself for two years. Suddenly, I heard something you said to Glenn. I simply realized that I could not have been there when my mother died for no other reason than the fact that I wasn’t. It wasn’t good; it wasn’t bad. It just was the truth. I don’t know why or how this happened, but the heavy burden spontaneously lifted. I am no longer plagued by guilt. It happened in an instant. I don’t understand it, but I guess I don’t have to. I am very, very grateful.”

If you truly listen to what somebody is saying, not by comparing what he or she is saying to what you already know or agreeing or disagreeing with what is being said, but if you are listening to hear it from the other point of view, this act of listening is enough to pull you into the moment. However, you have an incredibly facile mind. You can race ahead in your thoughts and finish another person’s sentence before he or she gets to the point. Or you can take exception to a word he or she uses and stop listening altogether. If you pay attention, you will see that there are many times when you have an internal commentary on what is being said rather than just listening. If you can train yourself to hear what is being said, from the speaker’s point of view, it takes you outside of time and into the current moment. This is a magical space where, once accessed, the by-product is Instantaneous Transformation.

True Listening is actively listening
to another with the intention of hearing
what is being said from the other’s point of view.

The act of listening pulls you into the moment, and the moment is where transformation happens. Transformation is not something that happens in the future; it only happens in the present moment of now. Being fully engaged in an activity pulls you into the moment, which sets the stage for transformation. In the case of this book, we suggest reading without adding anything, such as applying it to your life while reading, agreeing or disagreeing with what is being said, or commenting to yourself as you go. The act of reading will then be akin to truly listening, and it will access the moment, thus creating the possibility of Instantaneous Transformation.


Since 1987, internationally acclaimed authors, seminar leaders, radio show hosts and business consultants Ariel and Shya Kane have acted as guides, leading people through the swamp of the mind into the clarity and brilliance of the moment. Find out more about the Kanes, their seminars in NYC, in the UK, Germany and Costa Rica, the Say YES to Your Life! Meetups their work has inspired, their Being Here radio show or join their email newsletter. Also get information about their award-winning books.  Their newest book, Practical Enlightenment, is now available on