Gratitude is the gateway

I’ve been exploring this idea of the “heart-mind” or tapping into heart wisdom, or intuition, or your Inner Knowing, in lieu of the rational mind (and the very noisy world), over the course of last year.

It’s not something that felt easy or natural to me. I couldn’t automatically call up a feeling of joy. I couldn’t automatically drop into calm/heart space/listening mode… even after listening to a lovely meditation like the one at the end of this podcast:

“The first step is to close your eyes. And then put one hand on the chest over the heart. And when you when you place your and over your heart, you bring awareness to your Heart Mind on a physical level. And then the energy loves to follow consciousness. So your consciousness begins now to go to the heart.

Then next step is to take a deep breath in. And to hold that breath. So when you’re holding the breath now, get in touch with or listen to, or feel your heartbeat. See if you can connect with the beat of heart on a physical level. When you need to exhale, do so, but you keep your awareness with your heartbeat. If you didn’t get in touch with the heartbeat on this first breath, then take another deep breath in, hold it… and connect with the beat of the heart. So we are beginning now to tune into the Heart Mind. You exhale and then you begin to slow down your breathing – slow inhalation, slow exhalation. You do this for a little while. Calming the mind, centering yourself in the Heart Mind. And the Heart Mind is the center of trust.

And then now you add one more element into your Heart Mind, you call forward something you really love. Something you really appreciate. Something that brings you joy. Something you have passion for. Something you really care about. And you just sit here now and feel that. And let those feeling fill you. Open up to the joy of that.

The answer to what we are looking for outside is actually right here in front of us. It’s so close and so obvious that we completely overlook it.”

A recent epiphany opened up new terrain for me: Gratitude is the portal.

Any time I am trying to drop in to a place of calm, quiet, listening, open-heartedness, I simply cannot get there UNTIL I offer gratitude. Then, I’ll think of things I feel gratitude for – not a laundry list, not a rote recital of polite thanks, but a really attentive conjuring of something that feels like a real blessing, that I can just sit with, sink into — and I can feel my heart open up, (and often I’ll get a bit teary, which seems to be part and parcel of that state of being – fluid, emotional…)

Gratitude is the portal. Gratitude is the way to open my heart-space, to call up heart-mind or inner knowing up to bat.

I think we’re going to need to navigate the year ahead, the regeneration of life, the transformation of our systems, to more life-affirming ones, from that heart-space… and so the more easily I can tune into it, the more I’ll have to offer, and the more grounded I will be. So, gratitude… it all boils back to that. Let it be the gateway for the new year. Cross here.

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