According to the Heart Math Institute, the heart is the first organ to develop in the human embryo. It circulates blood through the body and is regulated by its own internal computer. It has its own brain cells, very similar to the ones found in the brain located in our head, that also produce electromagnetic energy. In addition to it being the pump muscle that moves our blood, researchers have described the heart as a storage place for emotional information with both long and short term memory, a feedback mechanism, and a sensory organ. Or, as Robert Hunter expressed it in the lyrics of a song, "the heart has its beaches, its homelands and thoughts of its own".*
Mere cognitive assertion does not make something true. It helps to start us on a path, but unless we engage the heart in the transformational process, much of our power is missing. Sometime things are clear in our minds before we come to embrace them in our heart, and sometimes our mind will lead us astray in attempt to protect us from discomforting knowledge. It is easy to rationalize and justify our positions with logic and lean heavy on the linear process while ignoring the other more intuitive parts of our internal guidance system, forgetting that it is the gestalt of our knowledge that offers the deepest wisdom. It has been said that it is only with the intercession of divine guidance, the opening to spiritual connection, that the heart can fully expand to realize its potential. One of the lines from Ephesians reads "I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened", ** acknowledging a special wisdom in that center of our being.
Keeping your heart open in the face of adversity can be challenging. Sometimes fear overwhelms love and the heart get drowned out by all the mental noise. A visual meditation to support the open flow of energy involves the imagining of a connecting device between the brain in your head and the heart in your chest. In a repose position, deepen your breath and allow your body to relax. With every breath you take, allow your mind and body to slip deeper into a relaxed state of well being. Visualize a passageway of connection between your heart and head. It might be a tube, an elevator, a stairway, a roadway, or a tunnel of light, whatever image comes to you. In your mind's eye, watch energy moving along this pathway, traveling smoothly from your heart to your head and then back again. With every breath, feel that peaceful easy feeling of relaxation deepen and your heart and mind open in harmonic convergence.
* Eyes of the World, 1973
** The Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians, 10th book of the New Testament