Questioning vs. Asking

A question is a sentence worded or expressed so as to elicit information; a doubt about the truth or validity of something; the raising of a doubt about or objection to something; a matter requiring resolution or discussion; a matter or concern depending on or involving a specified condition or thing. To question means to interrogate, to call to account, challenge, or to accuse. To question also means to ask (someone) questions, especially in an official context; to feel or express doubt about; to raise objections to.Oxford English Dictionary

“When you have asked the right question, you are in sight of the answer.”
—Edna Lister

Jesus often used the Socratic question and answer technique as part of his teaching style. When teaching, he asked his listeners rhetorical questions because he wanted them to think about what he was saying. Asking questions elicits a response from the listener(s), creating a two-way flow of conversation instead of lecturing.

Confrontational questioning is a soul taint, but asking questions is part of the learning process, an extension of the mental faculty. When you have asked the right question, you are in sight of the answer. Paying attention is critical, for the answer can come from any direction or through any person.

Edna Lister on Questioning versus Asking

Don’t interrupt a teacher, lecturer, or speaker. Write your questions and ask them later. Do not cut another’s vibration anywhere with untimely questions.—Edna Lister, July 2, 1942.

Banish worldly thoughts from your mind, picture the problem, close out the mundane, conversation, persons, or sound in the room when you ask. You will receive your answer of Wisdom.—Edna Lister, May 6, 1943.

Even a questioning look is the same as asking a question.—Edna Lister, July 17, 1945.

Ask no unnecessary questions ever. Ponder first, and someone may answer your question before you ask. Listen, do not interrupt when a teacher speaks. God often works incognito as the teacher.—Edna Lister, November 11, 1946.

A question should be well thought out before asking, then nine times out of ten you will not ask. Do not ask silly questions ever. Asking foolish questions is kindergarten.—Edna Lister, June 17, 1947.

Ask questions only after due consideration and pondering. Say, "Please, give me the law on this." Your Guards will answer you.—Edna Lister, June 27, 1947.

Your Guards will aid in lessons, but it is first necessary to ask for it. Have all questions ready to ask of your teacher.—Edna Lister, July 29, 1947.

Do not ask "why." Self may add no conditions. Bring all facts to bear upon it, and use the faculties of logic, reason, discrimination, discretion and discernment. When understanding is impossible, ask the question.—Edna Lister, August 20, 1947.

Seek advice, not for some silly unformed question with no facts or thought behind it.—Edna Lister, August 20, 1947.

You are never reprimanded for a real question.—Edna Lister, August 20, 1947.

When a teacher repeats a question or a phrase, it is your guardian angel speaking to you. Even the Bible uses repetition to highlight the subject—Edna Lister, December 13, 1947.

Gather all facts in the case here, then when up against the need for aid to decide, ask.—Edna Lister, January 8, 1948.

When you can rise and stay up, you need only to look about you and you have the answers. They are all there.—Edna Lister, January 8, 1948.

Look up for the new until you do not look to anything of the world for explanation (your Guards would explain it), for that which has gone out into the world, what someone else has found, or what you find in the pages of a book is old.—Edna Lister, January 8, 1948.

If you ask such a question as, "Isn’t it right for me to do this?", the Father will say, "Thou hast said," for God has given man the gift of freedom to choose and thus may not refuse to let man choose. Ask instead, "Please advise me, Father. Please suggest what to do. Please give me the idea," and listen for your answer.—Edna Lister, June 12, 1949.

A pin point’s worth of questioning can block the answer.—Edna Lister, June 7, 1950.

Never ask two or more questions in one.—Edna Lister, November 24, 1950.

The law for all teachers is "Let there be no argument at all." Hold questions until the end of class or phase of teaching. Pray and lift your hands if the vibration is lowered.—Edna Lister, November 29, 1950.

Questioning is illegal, and implies repudiation of the lesson given, not acceptance. -Edna Lister, December 20, 1956.

You can answer any question if you know where God is. Divine Mind will answer if you extend your antennae from the brain’s nerves, look up and ponder.—Edna Lister, How to Cultivate Photographic Memory: Five Categories of Expression, November 19, 1957.

The Father may give you contradictory stints of service. He expects you to obey without question.—Edna Lister, December 16, 1957.

You can ask of a teacher but the Father will give you the answer.—Edna Lister, May 8, 1958.

A loud, shocking question is dangerous to ask a mediator who is high in consciousness. Ask questions only at the close of a phase. This requires discernment, discrimination and discretion. Usually, you need not ask questions, just keep looking and listening up in consciousness.—Edna Lister, May 8, 1958.

You don’t know when you will get your answer. God could never get the masses to hear if He didn’t give them a reason to listen.—Edna Lister, Revelation, the Beast with Ten Horns, June 3, 1958.

You can shatter the vibration with a questioning remark.—Edna Lister, December 1, 1958.

When you have asked the right question, you are in sight of the answer. To get an answer, your mind must be as calm as water on a still night. So, the first very great necessity for expression is to learn never to ask why. When you have extended your consciousness high enough, you do receive the answer. Yet you cannot bring truth through the veils of illusion unless you are balanced at the heart center.—Edna Lister, What is a Miracle? May 6, 1960.

If you question, you doubt and receive no understanding of the law. You get understanding through wisdom, which comes through acceptance and obedience.—Edna Lister, November 26, 1962.

Regarding the future, God’s Heavenly Councils have outlined and arranged everything in divine order, ready to appear at the right time, and will not reveal the answer before that time, so questioning is out of order, illegal and delaying.—Edna Lister, November 26, 1965.

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Edna Miriam Lister
1884 – 1971
The original Pioneering Mystic,
Christian Platonist philosopher, American Idealist, Founder, Society of the Universal Living Christ, minister, teacher, author, wife, and mother.

Edna Lister

Etymology of question: Latin quaestio, quaestion-, from quaestus, past participle of quaerere, "to ask, seek."

Confrontational questioning is a soul taint.

Asking questions is part of the learning process, a mental faculty.


Harper, Douglas. Online Etymology Dictionary, 2024.

The Holy Bible. King James Version (KJV).

The Oxford English Dictionary, Compact Ed., 2 vols. E.S.C. Weiner, ed. Oxford University Press, 1971.