Tag Archives: #heart

You know

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RobinLK Studios, Creative by Discovery

Some things you just know, without understanding or reasoning. They just are.

From that first breath we’re privileged with, the gasp that comes from the longest silence, you know there is something greater than any understanding can reveal.

It’s a look. A smell. A touch that melts a hundred hardened hearts and can prompt the unfurling of the first delicate petal from the centre of a tightly bound rose. It unleashes an unimaginable, a vast infinite beyond comprehension.

It’s when time is nothing and growth is everything, when nothing can morph into everything and everything can become entirety. That first breath tells all. Is all. The first step, the first word spoken. It’s when a teenager admires a parent’s bravery, and that other teenager rises to speak her mind in forthright candour and with a strength you wish all people had.

In that, is a knowing that can’t be explained. It’s something that stirs deep within the youngest of people and oldest of souls, and prompts action when no action may be wanted. It comes on impulse voicing care and concern, as a surprise savvy loaded in activism that inspires and binds to accomplish more.

As the croon of tyre on bitumen can hum into daydreams of what was yesterday and what’s to come tomorrow, mumbles onto foreign lands can feel so familiar. To start over or return, it can be the same and one, as is the knowing and not knowing and catching a whiff to follow your nose when there is no scent.

It knows. As sure as the sun rises each morning and sets each night, even when it hovers in a haze of pink and orange to dance on a horizon and never really set or rise, you know. Deep in your centre, it calls. Even when a kick in the gut strikes in the dim of dark to seethe in swells and spits of molten lava, or the broken of heartache that has no end, in all its fragmented fracture, it knows what to do. It understands what is.

When a touch can send quivers into a rabid fever, when luminous and incandescent eyes of blue, green or brown pine unwavering into you, whether human, canine, feline or other living creature, you know. No matter where you are, what you’re doing or for how long.

It’s there in the last breath in a long line of breaths, bellying out as a knowing in one’s core of all that is. That knowing of instinct, you know it, even when you don’t know it.

And yet the simplest action for all of us is to listen. Hear that call, hear that knowing of instinct. It can flutter in the flap of a butterfly wing, or a bam-shazam punch of tungsten tough.

Stop. Breathe. Listen in silence.

What it is that we know, is in the pits of no end. Hone in on that knowing for in its centre, is the sound of love. Touch it. Stroke it. Gaze upon it. Taste it and smell it. Devour it. That’s all we need to know.

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Stop for a minute, or a week

Stop War by Irina Ivanova

Stop and smell the roses, so they say. Force the halt, cease all activity apart from the necessity to breathe. Even if only for a few minutes, although a week or two would be best. Give yourself that time to be and do whatever you’re guided to do, without question.

Give yourself permission to not think and listen to what calls from inside. Feel that breath rise from your belly, imagine the pent-up of must-dos passing through parched lips into a vanquished place of no return.

Step off the doing and thinking treadmill and rest from what needs to be done for an hour, even 10 minutes a day will give the heart the freedom to do as it wills. Leave your phone, emails and all social media. Allow yourself to turn off from the crazy of the world, whether the cat crying at three or four in the morning to be let outside or the tantrum throwing adult wanting the red lollypop in the supermarket that one person holds, when a thousand red lollypops sit on the shelf.

Shut down from the tormenting anger spiked in the anguish of a river bed scorched in skeletal frailty, shelter from the spits of narcissistic demands of entitlement with no care for anyone but an ego self. Such darkness of malice hurts, especially when devoid of care or nurture.

Take a breath in the open air, even if clouds loom in grumbling grey and screams of me, me, me taunt a genial breeze. Wriggle your toes in the grass and feel the soft blades bend to your curve of step, appreciate the occasional stab from a broken twig or thorn from a weed as a reminder that without pain, we cannot know pleasure. Notice cars zooming by, and the occasional siren of urgency. Discern the hues of mauve and lilac tinging those pillows of brewing above.

Eat when you’re hungry and not according to the clock, play in the sand pit with your toddler or the foot beneath the table of the woman you want to lunch with, even if it’s to share a cheese sandwich by a lake.

Make love. Eat some more, the hommos in the fridge with Turkish bread or the goji berries coated in dark chocolate. Some say cold meat pies are best. Watch movies. Walk the dog and stroke the cat, allow them to sneak onto a bed for an afternoon nap. Lounge in your favourite leather chair and watch more movies. Doze, then read. Sip a slow brewed coffee dolloped in cream or a glass of wine or beer, or better yet, a Wild Thing cocktail swimming in passionfruit with a flaming cinnamon stick for stirring.

Take that sojourn from daily grind and do your nothing, whatever that is to you. Say no to the meeting you must have with him or negotiation you must have with her. Help that person you promised after you’ve had time to catch up with you. Give yourself the courtesy and good health of time. Talk to her or see him when you’re ready. You won’t burn at the stake or be stoned for ignoring a sulking demand.

It’s not a luxury to give this time to oneself, but a necessity to be in your nothing. It comes with a level of courage though, for what floods in when the weave of distractions slackens, can swirl in muddy torrents that whip into a whirlpool of lost swirl.

What to do when one stops doing what is supposed to be done can confuse day and night and merge thoughts of today and tomorrow to a mess of exhaustion. Legs can grow heavy and struggle to move, feet trip over a pavement of no undulation. Eyelids hang tired and ache in limp muscles and steadying in this whirlpool of lost takes every imaginable speck of strength.

Where to, what now, how can I … this is awful.

Yet among the birds continuing to chirp in varying trills to a background of murmuring traffic is the eye in the muddy torrent, where the muck settles and glimpses of love without judgment begin to flicker. That light and love grow and soon, the radiance of those that give and appreciate shine as stars that blind all that take with the insatiable intensity and selfish desire of a Vampire Bat, tearing blood vessels with its sharpest of teeth and sucking half its weight in blood without being noticed.

In that light is a care that comes without effort because it simply exists as an endless purity, sometimes bound in intrinsic fibres that can’t be explained, understood or denied. Surrendering to the heart to find the natural flow is all that matters. The head has no say.

Demands of work, children and family can mellow with time to be. Legs will gain their strength as you stroll through that moist grass in the backyard, the tips tickling between your toes. You’ll notice the single leaf falling from the plum tree in tune with the season and remember the sweetness of the first summer fruit. You’ll appreciate the time you’ve given yourself and ease into that groove of being.

The washing machine goes quiet; time to put another load on and maybe make a cup of tea to have with a piece of chocolate-raspberry mud cake topped in luscious cream. Lunch. With a movie. And the tea should be peppermint, to make for a slightly healthier lunch.

To relish in the freedom of being and to understand that a few days of time to be yourself and not fulfil a string of obligations, is an unexpected gift.

Transition II: Nurturance

Find yourself

Nurturance: emotional and physical nourishment, support and care given to someone; the ability to give such care.

Transition and nurturance go together. The two are like the rain and sun, night and day. The rain comes, dampens, sometimes floods us and brings the wind with it as its partner to wreak havoc and destruction. Then suddenly, we’re out of the storm and wake to the sun emerging, peering over clouds as if arriving with careful consideration of what’s gone on before. It slowly expands in shine to help grow life again.

Occasionally, that sun bursts past clouds as if to say, ‘Enough is enough!’

With life as a string of constant transitions, nurturance exists as the ability for us to care for others, as well as to care for our own self. But when we’re deep in transition, how do we find or summon that nurturance?

Sometimes that nurturance appears when we feel a small progressive step towards a goal we’re striving towards and which we’ve taken great chances on, or at the senseless passing of a another human who may seem to be a stranger but whose passing strikes so much more in us.
It can manifest in the simplest of grounding forms, as three children home from school crowding around me with two dogs mingling in between, at the ‘Aha, you did it!’ moment of one of those children’s impressive school report after years of struggle.

As I gasp for air while swimming my laps at the pool, I’m appreciative of my powerful breathe when I’ve just heard family news of a grandmother suffering with emphysema leaving this planet. I’m groundingly grateful, albeit in water, for the ease she has once again, and for what I have.

Ultimately, nurturance finds its way, just as Daphne flowers emerge to bask in the day-after sun of a winter solstice to permeate every molecule of air. Poet Rumi sums it up well,

Your heart is the size of an ocean.
Go find yourself in its hidden depths.

However sometimes, it’s not as easy as those simple words reflect and when I’m in deep transition and struggling for nurturance, I use KISS – Keep It Simple Sweeties. Following, is an earlier blog on KISS …

Sometimes life is about keeping it simple sweetie

Sometimes, KISS just doesn’t work. Life is supposed to be about keeping it simple stupid. Yet today, a drabness overcomes me and mutes me to make me question whether my heart exists.
I know what to do though, to connect with my heart and open that love channel again. I’ve learnt how to do it.

So I sit, albeit a squirmy still, close my eyes and ‘be’ in the quiet. I blank my mind and bar thoughts from entering, and begin searching for my heart. To my surprise, I can’t see it or feel it. I know it’s there though, pumping this muted life through me.

I look harder and see nothing but darkness. I glimpse a mass of black, thick tar that has dried rock hard over where my heart should be beating. At least I found where my heart should be.

I begin to visualise breaking through the crust of the tar, but not a budge, nothing. I can’t see my heart, yet I know it’s there suffocating, unable to feel and give, unable to care. I know I must uncover it so I can breathe again.

I squint and squeeze my eyes to envisage my heart beating under the shiny crust.

More, stronger, forcefully …

And there it goes, a pump bursts through to shoot off shattered black pieces of rock-solid tar into forever.

Streams of light begin to pump in and out as a light show of sunbeams blazing. My chest collapses. Relief.

I’m open again, breathing.

Now to the next step of being able to feel and give again.

Our hearts can shut down and our love can be battered and cloaked from time to time, but it’s an energy that never dies. It can become scared and vulnerable, and can go into hiding. It can be so easily hurt and smothered and sometimes feels too hurt to recover. It wants to shutdown forever. And why not? It would save a lot of pain that sometimes, can be too great to acknowledge, let alone overcome.

Yet I refuse to believe that the heart and love can be restrained or stopped, or lay dormant for too long. Love never stops and is endless.

One day, I asked a mother of thirteen how she could love all her children so equally, how she could have that much love for so many. ‘I just do,’ she said to me, calmly and reassuringly. I didn’t understand the concept until I had my own children.

Listening to one’s heart and love can hurt and send us into a black hole. The trick to recovery is to be gentle and understanding, to allow time for recovery even in the face of a gloom and smother greater than one can imagine.

I think a wise friend understood this when she said to me that maybe KISS should be Keep It Simple Sweetie.

Maybe that’s the secret, to be compassionate to one self as well as to others. Love is two-way after all.

Integrity + Love = Life

Integrity. Acting from the heart, from a place of love and compassion and understanding. That’s the essence of life.

Integrity and the heart go hand-in-hand. We can’t have one without the other. If we live and think with integrity, then we can only come from a place of love and honesty, a place where we are true to ourselves. And in being true to ourselves, we become authentic and true to others.

I was reminded of this on the weekend when I had the chance for some time out to be still and to contemplate. It was in that stillness that my heart opened and softened again, even though I didn’t realise it was beginning to close! I’ve talked about how to be still and connect to our hearts in my Keep It Simple Stupid blog of a few months ago.

It’s so easy to forget to do that. We get caught up in what’s happening around us, who has and done what, the things we want. All too soon, we’re on that treadmill and on the way to that place where self-centredness and ego live.

But once I’m reminded to live that way again, to listen to my heart and feel what it’s telling me, it’s such a simple and stress free way of living.

Acting from the heart and with integrity allows the synchronicities within life to become obvious too.

In the evening of that time-out day, I watched the movie, Seven Years in Tibet. It was based on the true story of an Austrian mountain climber who became friends with the Dalai Lama at the time of China’s takeover of Tibet. It portrayed the integrity of people and their love of life so beautifully. At one point in the movie, the Dalai Lama asks Heinrich, the mountain climber, to save the worms that were being killed whilst constructing a new village building. Heinrich laughed at the suggestion. But it was so important to the Dalai Lama and he tells Heinrich that he must find a way to save the worms from being killed.

Life’s synchronicities are all around us if we take the time to become more aware and look, reminders of the weave of life that guide us, are everywhere. I’m sure you see them in your own life.

My weave of leave is leading my family and me to two weeks of swimming and snorkelling in sunny northern Australia. Now that’s a lovely synchronicity!

 

Of course, synchronicity isn’t all about positive and good. In the time between drafting this blog and finalising it for publishing, I discovered my beautiful, gentle Plymouth (a breed of chicken) dead in her garden. That unfortunately is part of the weave of life too.

I’m heartened though, that at least she died knowing the touch of my hands when I lifted her from the eggs she often brooded over, and the sloppy peck through food scraps with her friends. I found her this sunny afternoon where she would regularly sit in a hole of bare earth with the warmth of the sun on her back, occasionally dusting the fine dirt through her feathers.

We’re all part of this world

A wonderful verse struck a chord lyrical within, a few weeks ago.

Love so vast, love the sky cannot contain. How does all this fit inside my heart?

Popular thirteenth century poet, Rumi, wrote it.

I know love is vast and endless. I feel it. I see it.

What I don’t know is how such grand amounts of love can fit into the small heart of ours, especially when its physical function is to pump mechanically and continuously to keep our life flowing. And yet despite its tireless work, the heart feels, gives and receives endless amounts of love that a sky cannot contain.

Ask a parent about the love for a child that takes its first steps or performs at a first concert, or new and old lovers about what they feel for their mate. Ask any pet owner about love following the loss of their dog or cat after fifteen years together. They will struggle to utter a word through tears that weep from an endless well in their broken heart.

I like to believe that we humans know what love is and what it means to love and be loved, even if it’s after being hurt in love. And although I sometimes wonder how the vastness of love can fit inside a small, pumping heart, I know it’s because at the essence of our hearts, is a soul.

It is a soul that is endless in its being and strength.

Days later and as quickly as the beauty in Rumi’s quote struck me, a shock jock spoke and jarred me out of my warming image.

A well-known radio broadcaster in Australia told a crowd at a $100-a-head political fundraiser that the Australian Prime Minister’s father died a few weeks earlier of shame because his daughter was a liar. Unbeknownst to the shock jock, his address was recorded and subsequently leaked.

However, the recording wasn’t important. It’s his heart, or maybe missing heart, that interested me.

His callousness and disregard for a grieving human being, bewildered me. Where was his compassion and love, his heart? Surely, even in political games, it must exist.

Perhaps I was naïve. Or perhaps his love sat quietly and alone in a small crevice in his heart, unable to extract itself from its depths. Or perhaps he was without a soul. I felt saddened by that thought.

I didn’t understand and I didn’t know that I was meant to. As I’m told over and over, we live in a polarity of positive and negative, good and bad. It takes all kinds of people, plants, animals, air, and whatever else to live on this Earth. And that includes love.

I think we all have it, love, somewhere in our hearts, just differently. Maybe dressed differently, acting differently.

I think it takes all of us, as different as we are, to live in this world.

Takeaway truth

Here’s a striking truth:

‘When nobody else celebrates you, learn to celebrate yourself. When nobody else compliments you, then compliment yourself. It’s not up to other people to keep you encouraged. It’s up to you. Encouragement should come from the inside.’ ~ Your Daily Woo

After reading that, I saw a feed on Twitter asking whether anyone knew of someone who had committed suicide and whether acceptance and unconditional love would have made a difference.

Pretty powerful question. I rarely respond to anything on Twitter but felt so compelled that I tweeted yes, but that it was far more complicated than having acceptance and unconditional love.

And yet within that complicated mix, something has to come from inside of us.

For me, that inside is about centring and sitting still to allow and feel all that is around me, to connect with my heart, myself as well as with others. In doing that, I feel gratitude for all that I have and experience, all that is around me. That wonderful grounding is something I’ve written about before in Keep It Simple Stupid.

Centring and connecting with my heart allows me to acknowledge and appreciate the love a teenage boy has for his younger brother while looking after him one night as he vomits into the toilet, and the love he has for me for not wanting to wake me. Connecting with my heart allows me to feel a passion and desire that can burst through me and remind me that I’m alive. It allows me to feel the deep, loving sentiment behind receiving flowers because I’ve had a battering week and not because it’s Valentines Day and that’s what you do on Valentines Day. And of course, it opens me up to feel my heart shatter.

Connecting with inside of ourselves means acknowledging that us humans are who we are with all our idiosynchronicities, it’s the real us without any outside influence.

When we can acknowledge that we can find love within us, we have what we need to live on this Earth. We find acceptance in that love and everything we need to survive and live, is inside of us.

There are no magic answers or solutions to life or living in this world. Sometimes we make it more complicated than it actually is and we can live a lifestyle that is so fast and materialistic, that we seek answers and expect them to be there instantly and without having to do anything for them.

But if we can simply connect to our centre, our heart, through meditation, exercise, sitting still or doing anything to help us stop and be grateful for all that is around us, we can learn to be in our own peace, to follow our heart in what makes us truly happy. We can find our self-love and with that, we will love beyond ourselves.

Our human spirit and soul naturally evolve and each day brings an element of evolution, whether we’re conscious of it or not. Some may evolve faster or slower than others, we’re all individual with our own paths to travel. That’s what makes the world so beautiful.

So if we connect with our heart, our inside, we have everything we need, and it comes effortlessly – love, hope, peace, faith, forgiveness, courage, gratitude, wisdom, and encouragement. We have divine love within us.

 

Sometimes, life is about Keeping It Simple Sweetie

Life is supposed to be about keeping it simple stupid. Yet today, a drabness overcomes me and mutes me with a darkness to make me question whether my heart exists.

I know what to do though, to connect with my heart and open that love channel again. I’ve learnt how to do it.

So I sit, albeit a squirmy still, close my eyes and search for my heart. To my surprise, I can’t see it or feel it, but I know it’s there pumping life through me.

I look harder and sight nothing but a mass of black, thick tar that has dried rock hard over where my heart should be beating.

I visualise breaking through the crust of the tar, but no a budge, nothing. I can’t see my heart, yet I know it’s suffocating, unable to feel and give. I know I must open it again.

I squint and squeeze to envisage my heart beating under the shiny crust.

More, stronger, forcefully …

And there it goes, bursting, smashing black pieces of rock-solid tar into the air and shooting them off into forever.

Then, the light streams in and out, as sunbeams blazing.

Relief. I’m open again, breathing.

Love can be battering and cloaked from time to time, but it’s an energy that never dies. It can become scared and vulnerable, and can go into hiding. That’s the downside to opening up the heart. It can be so easily hurt and smothered and sometimes feels too hurt to recover. It wants to shutdown forever. And why not? It would save a lot of pain that sometimes, can be too great to acknowledge, let alone overcome.

I refuse to believe that the heart can be restrained or stopped though, or lay dormant for too long. Love never stops. It’s endless. One day, I asked a mother of thirteen how she could love all her children so equally, how she could have that much love for so many. ‘I just do,’ she said to me, calmly and reassuringly. I didn’t understand the concept back then, but I do now.

Listening to one’s heart and love can hurt and send us into a black hole. The trick to recovery is to be gentle and understanding, to allow time for recovery even in the face of a gloom and smother greater than one can imagine.

I think a wise friend understood this when she said to me one day that maybe, KISS should be Keep It Simple Sweetie.

Maybe that’s the secret, to be compassionate to oneself as well as to others. Love is two-way after all.