The practice of heart: A meditation on openness

So often we’re “in our heads”. As a culture, we are experts at analysing, critiquing and dissecting the world around us. I know I do it all the time and have to catch myself.

Why? Because like everything, there needs to be a balance between the head and the heart. We’re taught quite early in life to to suppress instinct for order, vulnerability for strength, openness for a veiled view of our emotions. It’s a rare being who wanders this earth with their heart on their sleeve.

Often that kind of openness is confused with weakness, or, dare I say it, madness.

Am I promoting a swing across to emotional vulnerability? No, well, not exactly. What I am saying is that we need to recognise what walls we have up, what cloaks we wear, and make an effort to disengage with them. Why? Because they are part of a pattern of dialogue that we have with ourselves, and what we say to ourselves internally, becomes our external reality.

Our thoughts are not facts. They are a fleeting, transient image of ourselves at best.

The practice of meditation, while mentally cognitive on a base level, is also a leap of faith. It is a dialogue with ourselves. It is a pause, a reflection and a promise.

Sitting with yourself takes great strength, and more importantly, openness of heart. It is a quiet word, deep down that says “I recognise that the way I think doesn’t always serve me, but I believe I can change that”. It’s a moment of ego-less confidence. A high five to the divine (if you want to get peace, love and mung beans 😉

So this morning, before you start your day, take a minute feel centered, with your back straight, eyes semi-closed, mouth slightly open.

Take a few seconds to breathe, paying attention to the feeling of your chest rising and falling.

Bring your attention to your heart. Imagine if you can, that inside your heart is a speck of diamond dust. In that speck holds a universe of potential for love, clarity, peace and enlightenment. It glows radiant, clear and bright light.

As you breathe in and out, it pulses and radiates luminous rays from your chest. This is the openness of heart and spirit. Slowly the rays connect to surround your entire body in white, clear, luminous light. This light then spreads to your surroundings, out past your abode, your street, your suburb, your country and to surround all that you know in this universe and beyond. This is the potential of an open heart. Take a few minutes to bathe in this openness, remembering to take this with you wherever you go. Enjoy your day.

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