When the question, “Can I watch and listen without motive?” is asked, one is motivated to find a satisfactory answer, or one realizes one can’t do anything without motive because action is response to stimuli. So the question is , “What constitutes motive?”. What moves me to do what I do? Is it always conditioned response, or is it sometimes an instantaneous response to what actually is? I’m usually operating on the basis of what past experience has imprinted in memory, but there are times when attention responds immediately to what is, before I know what I’ve done.
There will always be conditioned response because it’s practical, necessary for survival, and we know that responding defensively or aggressively to that which does not support or reinforce our self-image is neither necessary nor practical, but quite the opposite. So when someone asks whether I can watch and listen without motive, the answer is, Only when my self-image is not threatened or challenged. And since my self-image is always under threat and sometimes challenged, the answer is Sometimes, but not often.