Schulke-wideIn American society, living from the heart is unconventional. Why? Because our society fosters qualities that overshadow the heart, qualities such as academic knowledge, individual achievement, defeating the competition, and amassment of money and material goods.

These revered American qualities require vigilant, perpetual thought. Vigilant, perpetual thought keeps the mind very busy. All this mind-noise drowns out the messages coming from the energy system of the heart. If you can quiet your mind, a richer and easier way of living, powered by pure love, emerges from your heart.

To live from a place of pure love, you will need some new skills, otherwise your mind will shut your heart down in a flash. For instance, if you witness poverty from a state of pure love, you may give your stuff away — and you’ll cause the conditioned mind to flare up, “Don’t give that away, we need it to survive.”

When you begin a relationship, your mind might promote these thoughts, “Don’t be vulnerable, they’ll just hurt you eventually.” So, how can you live an open-hearted life without interference from the mind? The answer cannot be obtained through knowledge alone, such as the knowledge gained by reading this article. Instead, the answer must be experientially learned by your body.

First, you must gain control over the noise in your head. Any of the following mind-quieting activities can be done for seconds, minutes or hours:

  • Visualize your brain engulfed in a vast, dark emptiness inside your skull as if your brain is floating in deep, dark, outer space.
  • Close your eyes but focus their gaze in-between your eyebrows. Then imagine a shift in your mind’s energy to the upper, frontal part of your brain. Stay with this concentrated focus on the upper, frontal brain. If a thought enters your mind, imagine it floating away.
  • Mentally repeat one single word. Use any word you admire. I like “merge,” which can hint of so many things: a merging of the heart and mind, a merging with another human, a merging of one belief system with another. You could use “yam” (pronounced YAHM), the Sanskrit Bija Mantra for the heart chakra.
  • Set your mind single-pointedly on studying a flower. Study the curve of each petal, a dew drop pooling on a petal, the intricacy of a stamen, etc.

In addition to the quick tips above, yoga, meditation, centering prayer and hypnosis all quiet the mind.

Secondly, open your heart with these experiential activities:

  • Practice the yoga pose “Camel,” a beautiful heart-opener. In the beginning, you may feel vulnerable, nauseous or fearful. When you start to feel discomfort (but not pain), stay with the pose: this is when the real transformation begins.
  • Love your life unconditionally. How? Close your eyes, focus them between your brows, and repeat this centering prayer directed at a Spiritual Guide or the Universe in general, “Please, give me the grace to fully love this life of mine.”
  • Forgive yourself for mistakes with desensitization. Think of a “mistake” that haunts you. Mentally state the mistake and then add “so what!” to the end of the story. A perceived mistake that took only a flash of time does not define your entire existence. Don’t let anything in the past ruin another single moment of your beautiful life.
  • Forgive others. If you cannot stop yourself from making mistakes, how can you expect others to avoid them? They feel emotions about their mistakes just like you feel about your mistakes. Close your eyes and contemplate how the mistakes of others make you just like them.

Once your mind is quiet and your heart is open, a deep intuition arises. Intuition allows you to make quick, awesome decisions without mulling over reams of thoughts — thoughts that eventually invite doubt, worry, the quest for more knowledge, and the resulting perpetuation of mind-noise. Intuition emerges from a new-found love for living. Life becomes effortless and magical. Relationships are free of mind-made concepts and expectations. You project love. You attract love. You are love.

This is how we change the world, by each of us quieting our mind and opening our heart.

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Mindy Schulke
Mindy Schulke is a spiritual coach and yogi. Contact her at mindy.schulke@gmail.com.

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