My connection with the heart

I was particularly inspired by an IGTV posted by Dr Rick Hanson about letting go (part of a talk after Wednesdays Meditations with him that I always catch up on).  I would love to share some insights.

It was meaningful to learn that we can internally let go of things that are painful to us. It is however hard sometimes, due to a more natural tendency of holding onto something (in the IGTV there was an example of rock climbing).

In order to make this happen concretely, it could be beneficial to select something that has been upsetting, perhaps from the past (but still there, or something current that felt not quite right, perhaps an unfulfilled desire, something bothering). A general example of what to do when someone is dismissive. Of course, there can be human reactions and suffering to this behaviour. The process of letting go, is not getting rid of it (which is quite the opposite).   The focus is on patterns of craving, holding onto it and cause contraction and pain in the heart.  There is some holding, underlying somatic markers, as most of this happens in the body.

Some good ways that Dr Rick Hanson suggests are:

  • Exhaling (specifically to tension related and visualise the air coming out, imagining it smoky, to then feel the relief when it is released)
  • In the body scan, through feet to head, letting  go
  • Via patterns of holding  (imagining a punch in the stomach, for example) release of that contraction, movement letting go
  • with the hands like imagining letting go of a hefty stone
  • a gesture of flicking
  • surrender to the way things are

In another IGTV which is related to it, there is some emphasis on bringing the heart to the letting go. Touch the heart. Feel compassion for the self.  Show the heart to others for openness for them, sending good wishes when grappling with the issue.  Come into the heart, the storage of the emotional memories.  I previously wrote about courage (the root being the heart etymologically). There is a sense of arrival in the heart.  Like feeling at home.

I was also recently reading a story by Tara Brach, an adaptation to the tale of the Buddha. He was just about to die and told his beloved disciple that there is no need for his light.  We all have our own light that shines and just needs to be awakened. A heart that is ready to anything is a heart that is willing to live the fullest and experience and feel vitality in the process.

Going back in time, some of my favourite songs were about the heart, being “Open your heart” by the Europe (the band from Sweden).  I explored my love for the English language and my translation skills with this song when I was a child.

“Open your heart” (still moving to me to feel it, with the lyrics and music in my head) as I write: The song explores emotions, honest feelings and the importance of opening the heart to others, for ourselves. I listened to this song many times when feeling sorrow, especially in my life when I was a teenager,

Here is some significant parts of it:

… And I’ve been waiting
For the angels to knock on my door
I’ve been hopin’
Everything could be like before, oh…

Open your heart
Let me hear you
Make up your mind
I wanna hear you call
Open your heart
Want to come near you
Make up your mind

Open your heart
Tell me what’s wrong
why can’t you talk
Like you used to do before?
I don’t know if I’m weak
I don’t know if I’m strong
Hey girl, I can’t cope anymore

Open your heart
Let me hear you
Make up your mind
I wanna hear you call…

When I moved to the Uk, back in 2008, I immediately started to volunteer at a BHF store in Wimbledon. It was a fantastic experience and I still do my best to be involved in the cause, when I can.  

Kindness, coming from the heart, is one of the core virtues that simply translates into a warm smile, a touch, or a words of encouragement.

Back in 2017, at a Conference about Neurolanguage Coaching®, in Mainz, I leant about Heartmath®, leadership from the heart (tapping into the intuition, be more open and creative). I revised some notions of history and philosophy in that occasion. The Egyptians believed that the heart had to be lighter than a feather in the afterlife. According to Aristotle it was the very centre of intelligence. In the speaker’s journey the heart has the “unknown power to move mountains” that they had to study and discover for themselves.  It is usually associated with love, but it actually expresses several other emotions. I enjoyed revising this concept during the Conference last year (at this time, online mode, due to lockdown).

I love bringing an exercise I learnt into the meditation practice in order to focus and explore that space by placing the hand on the heart. It supports overall coherence and alignment. In this way we feel we begin to build resilience and make decisions for an increased sense of stability.

Finally.  I learnt a fantastic technique of heart opening and I apply it in my meditation sessions.

Always follow your heart.

Here is the link to the IGTVs I mention:

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