The heart chakra – opening your heart to love

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Art By Elena Ray

“When we balance our heart chakra, we simultaneously release past relationship wounds and attachments which may be hurting us in the present, and which could also compromise our future. The key to attaining the state of being ‘unhurt’ is to find love, forgiveness and compassion – for others, and also for ourselves.” – Natalie Southgate

The Sanskrit word for the heart chakra is अनाहत, Anāhata, meaning “un-struck.”

In last week’s post we talked about sound healing, and in the Indian tradition there are two kinds of sounds, the ‘struck’ sound meaning a sound that is heard aloud, and ‘unstruck’ meaning an inner resonance that is perceived through the heart.

The heart chakra is located in the centre of the chest, and it rules the heart and lungs.

This chakra is associated with the feelings of love and compassion. Anahata is related to the element air, it is accessible through the breath.

Visualising breathing through your heart centre, imagining love-filled light entering your body via your heart is a wonderful heart-opening exercise.

Anahata also means unhurt. Which is a nice image for those feeling a little weary of heart.

Tapping into the heart chakra is connecting to an infinite wellspring of love and compassion.

The heart chakra’s energy can help us fully and unconditionally experience love, without fear or pain, without attachment.

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The heart Chakradance is a dance of integration, of uniting the masculine and feminine energies, the energies of the more dense chakras below, with the more etheric above.

As we dance we honour Father Sky and Mother Earth, day and night, light and dark, yang and yin. We experience that beautiful space where all is united and integrated, where all apparent opposites move together in harmonious dance of love.

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To dance the heart chakra is to move with lightness, joy and compassion.

These dances reflect traditional dances from ancient Spain, Egypt and China.

Many of these dances used exaggerated arm movements to gently whirl into deep states of joyful harmony.

We draw inspiration from these dances, and move the arms to feel uplifted, light and free. As if we have wings to fly on air.

Inspired by the whirling of the ancient ones, we dance a soaring journey of love, compassion and joy.

Through your heart chakra, you have the choice to expand your consciousness through the power of love or contract your consciousness through the power of fear.

Many cultures believe the heart chakra is the seat of your soul in your body. That it is only when we tap into the wisdom of the heart that we can access our inner truth.

The latest scientific research suggests that the heart is far more powerful and influential that we have traditionally given it credit for.

Research from the Institute of HeartMath shows that the heart itself is an intelligent system.

The physical heart has its own nervous system, nicknamed the “heart brain.”

The Institute of HeartMath found the heart to be approximately 60 times greater electrically and up to 5,000 times stronger magnetically than the brain.

The heart and the brain are constantly in communication with one another, with the heart sending more information to the brain than vice versa.

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The heart influences the centres of the brain involved in perception, intuition and emotional experience.

You can increase your heart’s coherence – and enhance the way it interacts with the rest of your nervous system and brain – by focusing on love, compassion and gratitude.

The heart teaches us that themes of love, compassion, letting go, trust and openheartedness have physiological as well as psychological effects. Acting synergistically with your heart has personal, local and global effects.

Opening my heart means more to me than just healing my hurts. It signifies a commitment to love and compassion as a way of being in the world. That said, the only place it can begin is in my own heart.

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Natalie’s 5 Top Tips for balancing your heart chakra:

  1. Try to find compassion and kindness for yourself daily, so that it is possible to find it for others.
  2. Try to see beyond people’s behaviours and through to the real person.
  3. Live your life in the most generous and open way that you can.
  4. Know that compassion does not mean that you have to fix things; just being present for another person is in itself healing.
  5. Do your best to be non-judgemental of others. If you find yourself judging others, breathe into your heart and let the judgement go with your out-breath.