Power of Love
A Tour of Your Sacred Heart
By Diane Goldner - from
access the power of love, your life will change in a heartbeat
It's no wonder that we celebrate
the power of the heart on Valentine's Day. The heart is truly a mystical
gateway, the seat of the soul.
On Valentine's Day we revel in the
beauty of romantic love, with heart-shaped boxes of chocolates, cards, ruby red
roses, and candle-lit dinners for two. Yet mystics and saints tell us that this
love is just a taste of the divine love that we can find in our own hearts. A
Hindu saint once summed it up: "The heart is the hub of all sacred places," he
commanded. "Go there and roam."
In every religion the heart is
celebrated as precious and magical, a place of harmony, compassion, love, and
healing. In Catholic art, Jesus Christ is often shown with a heart so
illuminated it is on fire. In Sanskrit writings, the blazing light of the heart
is said to be so great it can burn away all impurities. In the Kabbalah, the
mystical branch of Judaism, the light associated with the heart, tiferet, is at
the very center of the tree of life. It is where everything comes into perfect
In the East the heart is
considered to be the seat of consciousness. After all, it is when we strip away
the chatter of the mind that we can live in the wisdom of the heart. The
Tibetan mantra om mani padme hum means, in translation, "The jewel of
consciousness is in the heart's lotus." And the Chinese word for heart, xin,
means both "heart" and "mind." In acupuncture, the heart is viewed as the seat
of the spirit.
Since I first began exploring
this mystical terrain, I have been continually awed and inspired by the power
of our hearts. I used to think romantic love was the apex of it all. Romantic
love is stunning, of course. But the deeper I delved into the heart, the more I
learned that love can be transcendent. I found that the love in our hearts can
shine the way the sun shines--on everything and everyone and at all times. The
love we feel for our beloved and our children and family members can be brought
to everything and everyone.
For me, a deeper understanding
of the heart began when I started to investigate spiritual healing. I watched
as healers laid hands on people and caused profound changes and insights.
Naturally, I wanted to know how that could possibly happen. Being a diligent,
persistent reporter back then, I asked every healer I interviewed: "How does
healing work?" They would often answer. "Through love. It's love that heals."
I always wanted to say: "Yes.
Yes. But how does healing really work?" Their answer didn't make too much sense
to me. I thought of myself as a loving person. But I knew that if I laid hands
on another person, not much would happen. For a long time, I was completely
baffled by the healings that I witnessed.
Then I began to have experiences
of a more subtle realm than the physical. I discovered that I could shift the
rhythm of my heart just by shifting my thoughts and focus. When I did, the
whole world changed. At first, this seemed to happen by accident. One of the
first times I noticed it happening, I was at a writers' conference. I was in a
room, trying to sleep, listening to two people chatting outside, four floors
below. The longer they talked, the more enraged I got. Finally I decided to
meditate to pass the time.
At some point, I realized I had
expanded so much I was present with the people talking outside. I no longer
wanted to kill them. I felt only a sense of presence. I was everywhere,
radiant. It felt great. I realized that the man doing most of the talking felt
lonely. He was just trying to fill himself up. I felt so much love and
compassion for him. Our hearts touched. Then he and his friend were saying
goodnight. He finally got the connection he needed-from me!
Later I began to experiment more
consciously. One of the most vivid experiences occurred in an electronics
store, of all places. I went to return an alarm clock and, lucky me, ended up
with a very unpleasant sales clerk who seemed intent on giving me a hard time.
My first impulse was to be nasty right back. The situation began to escalate.
Then I decided to try connecting to my heart center. I didn't know if anything
would happen or, at that point, if the energy in my heart was really "real,"
but immediately, as if by magic, the sales clerk's mood shifted and she became
very pleasant and helpful. It was as if I had flipped a light switch. I was
amazed to see my inner state reflected so quickly on the outside, and in
You can turn to the energy of
your heart just as easily. All you have to do is imagine a radiant white light
in your heart. You can even imagine the light in your heart connecting to the
light in another person's heart, whether you are in the room with this person
or in another part of the country. You will probably see some kind of effect.
Don't worry if you don't see the light; just trust that it's there. You can do
this to enhance a loving relationship or even to create more harmony and a
higher flow in a difficult situation. The more you do it, without pushing or
trying for a result, the more harmony and ease you will begin to notice.
Being in an expanded heart space
is a spiritual experience. But there is also some science to help us understand
how the spirit of the heart works. Researchers at the
Institute of HeartMath
(an organization in Boulder Creek, California, devoted to studying the heart)
have found that when people focus on a state of appreciation and love, their
heart rhythm quite literally expands and becomes more harmonious. To measure
this, researchers use EKGs and computer analysis to graph the heart-rate
variability of a person and map it as a sine wave. During a state of love and
appreciation, the sine wave of a person's heart rate rhythm may become twice as
big as usual, and much more even and orderly.
Physiologically, what is
occurring is that a person's breath slows down and the heart synchronizes to
the breathing. During the inhalation, the heart beats faster than usual. On the
exhalation, the heart slows. "I'm not saying we can measure the frequencies of
love," says HeartMath researcher Rollin McCraty. "But when we feel love, it
causes real changes in our body that we can measure."
Researchers at Harvard Medical
School found the same kind of expanded heart rhythm occurring in long-time
meditators during meditation sessions. One of the Harvard researchers called it
an "exuberant" rhythm. In their report in Psychosomatic Medicine, the Harvard
researchers speculated that humans might have a special "resonant frequency" at
which many different biological rhythms--such as the heart rate and the
breath--become synchronized. We humans seem to reach this resonant frequency,
which creates harmony in the body, when we feel peace, gratitude, love and
As I became more attuned to my
own heart, I found I could sense other people's heart rhythms in my own heart.
It turns out a person's heartbeat can be measured by delicate electromagnetic
sensors from as far as four feet away. So what I began to experience is
actually quite natural. At first, it seemed to happen only when I was doing a
hands-on healing. Now, connecting my heart to my client's heart is the basis of
my healings. As I work, I can literally feel my client's heart unwind and
expand and come to rest in my heart rhythm. I can't force it. I just invite it.
I allow. I accept the person's heart right where it is. As soon as I do, his or
her heart usually opens. It melts into mine. I think a lot of healers work this
way, sometimes even when they don't know it. There are even a few studies that
show the client's heart comes into synchronicity with the healer's heart.
Once that union occurs, we're
together. I'm not really "doing" a healing anymore. We're in the same psychic
space. If I hold a healing state, a state of deep peace and harmony, a state of
total unconditional acceptance and presence, a person will accept it--just like
if you pluck a guitar string, the sound will resonate through the whole room.
In that space of the heart, people's pain, physical, emotional, mental or
spiritual, can melt away.
Over time, I found that I could
put my hands anywhere on a person, and our hearts will unite. Recently, I was
visiting with my nephews when one of their friends got his finger slammed in a
van door that closed automatically-and too quickly. The mom dropping the kids
off couldn't react fast enough to stop the disaster. The kid, a boy of about
ten, was absolutely hysterical from the pain. I didn't have time to go to his
heart first to calm him down. So I worked directly on his finger. As I started
the healing, my heart slowed down and expanded, as it does when I'm doing
healings. The boy's heart began to "float" on my heart. Soon he was calm and
quiet. After perhaps ten minutes the swelling and bruising in his finger had
subsided, along with the pain. "I'm okay now," he said to me. He ran out to go
play with his buddies.
Healing doesn't come from
forcing something to change. It actually comes from accepting and loving what
is. Things melt in that radiant love, whether its physical pain or emotional,
even anger and broken bones or hurting guts or poverty consciousness. If you
ever want to help someone grow or change, love them. Love them as they are.
Hold for others the same awe and appreciation you feel when you look at
something beautiful, like a mountain or an ocean, for each of us is beautiful
in a profound way. Truly, that kind of unconditional love is the ultimate
magic. You can even help yourself to grow and change by holding that state of
love for yourself as well.
So this Valentine's Day, why
don't you try a dose of that unconditional love? It will do wonders for your
romance and your heart.