Living from the Heart

To live from the heart is a very important mission indeed.  One I embarked on years ago, and has led me to places I couldn’t have dreamed up.
I’ve always had a strong heart.  I was very loving and open as a child.  I was no angel, but I loved to help people connect to each other, to laughter, to their own light.
Even though I wasn’t not raised in a religious household, I longed for a relationship to the divine and was obsessed with writing about love.
Love was my salvation.  I found it reflected in boyfriends who honored, cared, and shared themselves with me.  I found it reflected in courageous women in spiritual communities.  I found it in the fire, sacred teachers, and meditation.
The year of my self-exploration into self-love happened in my junior year of college.  I traveled to far away lands, and as much as I traveled outward, I also travelled inward.
I traveled to China, where the culture shock was intense; Tibet, where I found a lot of peace, solace, and beauty in a place where China sought domination; India, a place that shook me to my roots, slowly taking me apart piece by piece; and northern Scotland, where I again found more peace, awareness, and put myself back together again with love.
I lived in 2 eco-villages, Auroville and Findhorn.  I recommend going to both once in your life.  These places showed me there are very different ways of living in relationship to yourself, others, and the divine.  India is on its own level of living in relationship to the divine planes of being.
I had learned to meditate, and began to really foster my own inner relationship to the witness, the part that is non-judgemental, but bears witness to all our experiences.  Identifying with this part of ourselves is the key to self-love, awareness, and transcendence.
A relationship with a boyfriend had started and ended for me, but my inner exploration was even more enlivened.  I discovered many others on the way that helped me see my own inner beauty, as I worked diligently on seeing it for myself.  I had a mantra of “I love myself,” which I repeated daily on the tibetan mala beads.  Beads passed down from my father, broken on my travels, and repaired by Tibetan nuns in their holy land – now that is full circle.
I did a 10-day silent Vipassana retreat in Italy at 21.  My first retreat ever.  I felt compelled to do it.  My young 20’s mind was very upset by it.  But it was the heart voice that compelled me forward, moving me closer to my inner self.  Even though it was very hard, it was also very beautiful.  I never experienced so much clarity and happiness as I did towards the end of and after that retreat.  It was the beginning of a path that would eventually lead me to places so blissful it was unimaginable, and as clear as a mountain lake in the Himalayas.
It would eventually lead me to states of oneness with myself, divinity, and my deeper humanity.

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