As a response to Le Fils, a film directed by the Dardenne brothers (2002), we explore the idea of speaking as an invitation and juxtapose it against ideas of speaking as a transactional, calculative, calibrated, activity. Speaking tends to be understood as a relatively straightforward matter: as a means of communication structured by such values as the reciprocal balancing of rights and obligations, of clear communication of information, of the gaining of insight into what is happening. Speaking, then, is a means by which we explain, prove or pass judgement on something. Understood this way, it is easily associated with ideas of empowerment or of the mediation of information: one directs or commits oneself to a (shared) orientation—for example to what Jürgen Habermas refers to as ‘communicative reason’. It presupposes a particular attitude of the subject; speaking that addresses the listener and the speaker herself in the name of an orientation or particular expertise to which access is claimed. In this article, by contrast, we would like to explore a different avenue of thought whereby speaking appears rather as an abandoning or exposing of oneself. It is less an activity than a passivity or passion, through which one becomes present in the present, which is at once also a kind of invitation. In exploring this form of speaking, we take up some ideas of Martin Buber. Our discussion relates speaking to being inspiring and being inspired, revealing in the process the way that to be inspiring is at the same time to be inspired. Speaking as invitation, we conclude, is what education is about.