Heart Practice to Connect with Everything

 
Mary Magdalene of the Burning Heart  by Tanya Torres

Mary Magdalene of the Burning Heart by Tanya Torres

 

How to Practice the Three Faces of God — Part Two

Heart Meditation and Prayer

to Relate to the Face of God-Beside-Us

Transfiguration  by   Lewis Bowman

Transfiguration by Lewis Bowman

Previously, in Part One, I wrote about classical meditation where we use the mind to move beyond the mind. Now we turn to heart centered meditation.  

At this point I add the word “prayer” to “meditation” because we can not only mediate with the heart—sitting quietly in God’s formless presence surrounding us—but also move to connecting to God’s personal presence in what is traditionally called prayer.

In heart centered meditation we can sit quietly, surrounded by divine formless love and peace.  Or, in heart sourced prayer we can move into an experienced personal relationship with God where we embrace God as a divine, intimate presence with some kind of meaningful form. The form may be simply an identifiable presence, a cloud of light and/or color, or a sensed personal presence, seen or unseen such as Jesus, Mary, and/or other saintly guides. We don’t come to experiencing these loving presences conceptually, but through moving into our heart sensations. It is letting that which is already true — God is with us personally—become an experienced relationship.  (For more on integrating meditation and prayer click here.)

HEART PRACTICES

Letting Go  by Alisha Lee Jeffers

Letting Go by Alisha Lee Jeffers

1. Allowing everything to be as it is

When we meditate and pray, we are often trying to get somewhere else.  We have a busy mind. We consider ourselves far from enlightened or awake. We have a litany of life situations we bemoan having happened. We still have feelings around old angers. This involves not just a letting go of mental thoughts, but also a releasing of heart-grips which are often the source of resentful, obsessing, or attached thoughts.

What would happen if we let go of all our concerns about the past and the future, even just for a few seconds? Allow everything to be as it is at the beginning of all spiritual practice. Allow at work. Allow getting to work in the traffic(!).  Allow when going to sleep. You may call it surrender to God, letting go, releasing all things into God’s hands, or allowing. Whatever you call it — this frees your heart to the joy of loving.

Head to Heart no words.jpg

2. Move your attention from your head down to your heart.

Some find it helpful to tap on you head with your hand a few times until your attention is there. Then tap on the way down your face and neck until you reach your heart and continue tapping until your attention is fully there and you are no longer thinking about your heart, but being in your heart space and experiencing the world from there.

3. Think of someone you love such as a loved one or Jesus.

Let this bring up feelings of affection and gratitude.  With Jesus, you can ask yourself, “What would I feel if the historical Jesus were really here with me now in his risen spiritual presence? Let your heart fill with gratitude, awe, and love.

After getting in the flow of this, you may find you no longer need to think of someone because simply moving down to your heart brings up feelings of love.

Supper at Emmaus  by He Qi

Supper at Emmaus by He Qi

4. Meditate, Pray, Transmit

Now, if you choose to meditate, remain in the formless love and bliss of pure heartfulness for as long as you want.

If you choose to pray, allow yourself to be drawn to God such as a fatherly motherly personal presence, Jesus as a close friend, and/or other saints such as Mary whom you find guiding you at times.

Heart focused transmission can be done anytime and anywhere. If you are waiting in line somewhere, such as the grocery store, you can move down to your heart and begin sending a field of love energy to all those you see around you.

If you are anxiously waiting for a job interview, move down to your heart and hold the interviewer in your heart field. You will find yourself instantly relaxing as you connect with your heart, even as you operate from the most reasoned and sensible responses to the questions being asked.

Revealing the Self  by Rassouli

Revealing the Self by Rassouli

Perhaps you are finishing up your Centering Prayer time – observing all thoughts and sensations as they pass by, using your centering word if they linger to bring you gently back to observing. You decide to move to the relational prayer Jesus practiced. While still in your heart space, become aware of the spiritual presence(s) with you. You can sit quietly soaking up the energy they are directing to you. And/or you can begin a conversation, both talking and listening for words, images, or intuitions that come back to you from them. 

 Four Steps of Heart Centered Meditation and Prayer

1.     Allow everything to be as it is.

2.     Move your attention from your head down to your heart.

3.     Think of someone you love.

4.     Meditate, pray, and/or transmit.

I Give You My Heart  by   Deborah Nell

I Give You My Heart by Deborah Nell