You really can have it all - I realised that this year. Not in the smug sort of material sense (of course) but in the deep, secret, honest sense that stems from acceptance. An acceptance that has come through finding joy in all of the moments on this journey we call life. An acceptance of where we are at in the midst of this global pandemic. An acceptance of the requirements to adapt and come out more resilient in the face of it all.
I talked a considerable amount in my last blog post about the heart. But I wanted to continue through this post as it has been a place that, this year, I have consistently worked in my personal practice. It is the place from which we can inspire ourselves and others. It is the place from where our loving kindness comes, it is from there that we find joy.
Very few people really understand the heart. It really is a masterpiece of creation. It is the first thing that is created in the womb when a fetus forms and whence all the other limbs and body parts grow out of. This is why it is the center of the body. It is an instrument with the potential to create harmonies and vibrations. You can feel it. You are the experiencer of your heart. Everything is touched by it.
Take a moment as you sit here reading to pause. Shut your eyes and just take a few breaths, then sense your heart. Perhaps you can feel the pulse, the beat? Perhaps you can feel its energetic vibration?
Biologically the human heart, like the heart of all mammals, is a muscle that pumps blood through the body. On a level of physics it is an energy center (a chakra in the ancient Indian Tradition) through which your energy focuses, distributes and flows. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) the heart meridian is one of the vital Yin meridian lines that rules the blood and blood vessels, regulating blood flow, controlling our heart beat and creating an even rhythm to our pulse.
In TCM they also believe the heart stores the shen (the spirit), anchoring the mind. They believe (in a balanced body) the shen comes out during the day and goes back into the heart at night to rest, nourish, rejuvenate. I love visualizing this! If the body is imbalanced in this meridian line you might find you have difficulty with sleep, anxiety, palpitations (high blood pressure), restlessness. You might also find you have difficulty with boundaries, separation, intimacy or being alone.
Being the center of our emotional and mental activity it is super important to be balanced in this energy channel. Helping you to maintain a joyful, enthusiastic, passionate vibe to your energy, to your communications with others and your self-expression. It will also help you remain capable in sustaining intimacy and meaningful relationships which, in my opinion, when in the midst of a global pandemic, forced into separation as we are can be a really useful thing to work with.
Another feature of the heart meridian is that it opens into the tongue and manifests itself in the complexion. Which is such a helpful way to connect to this meridian line. When it is balanced we are able to choose our words precisely to convey meaning well. We are able to communicate with warmth and engage people through our facial expressions.
As we draw into the festive season, whatever holidays you celebrate, or even if you don’t - I wanted to offer some ways to reconnect to your heart. To stimulate and balance that vital Yin Meridian Line that can keep us joyful over the coming months.
I will be offering up a ‘mindful advent’ - each day from now leading up to 25th December giving you a practice or activity that you can use to tap into the heart - each offering will support your self-care. You can join me for this on Instagram or Facebook to follow this mindful advent.
I have also loaded up as a GIFT for you all class from my new Yoga for Anxiety Course (still yet to launch) a restorative class for insomnia. To help calm you for a deep nourishing nights rest, helping you restore balance to your Heart Meridian.
We will be challenging ourselves through our mindful month to finish the year with the caves of our hearts wide open. My hope then that we can, whether through adventure, experience or relationships tap into the essence of light within the heart - divine love.
I hope you can join me.
'There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle.'
- Albert Einstein -