A few inches above the heart chakra and deep within our being lies the Cave of the Heart, the heart soul center. Entering this center, we pass into a deep, profound stillness -- the “peace that passeth all understanding.” Those who are absorbed into this sacred stillness often say that this is the soothing balm they have longed for but did not know how
The disconnected, frenetic striving of modern life is brought to rest in the peace of the soul. Once it is experienced, the thirst for living in this peace becomes a central focus in our lives. And the more we merge with that peace, the more our daily lives outpicture it. Discord and disagreement diminish, both within ourselves and in our relationships. The addiction to the adrenaline rush of stress-filled living falls away. In more and more moments, we experience joy and happiness, instead of suffering and conflict.
This newfound joy arises out of being itself -- it has no specific cause or reason, and is unrelated to outer circumstances and conditons. Most of us have spent decades attempting to find and secure whatever we think will bring us the peace and happiness that are our native condition. When we realize this deep joy and inner stillness are who and what we are, all seeking subsides, and we discover that we are happy and joyful in the most mundane of circumstances.
Once this authentic joy has been tasted, we find ourselves drifting away from the activities of the personality’s quest for happiness, which begin to feel empty and false. As the realization of innate joy, peace and happiness deepens, it increasingly underlies and even consumes feelings based in separation, such as anger, fear, guilt, and despair. Resting in a foundational sense that all is okay, just as it is, our inner Mona Lisa smile gently remains present through the ups and downs of life.
As we deepen in the heart soul center, the realization that love is not only our nature, but also the nature of all things, eventually pervades every aspect of our experience. Love and Oneness are no longer experienced as distinct, but merge and join as a unity best expressed as love~oneness. The deeper our immersion in love~oneness, the more fully we experience it as a universal constant, underlying even those appearances that would seem to contradict this, such as fear, anger, and hatred. All such states are eventually seen as temporary aberrations or distortions in the omnipresent field of love, arising out of believing the illusions of the mind.
The more deeply we merge with the love that is our innate beingness, the more thoroughly we come to know that love is All That Is, the very fabric and essence of God/ the One. We become exquisitely aware that love~oneness eternally emanates from the living God Presence that forms the core of our being. The God of Love that the Sufis and Christ Jesus extolled is now a directly apprehended, living reality. This realization might be simply stated as God is Love, Love is All That Is, and I AM That. We call the full, embodied realization of these fundamental truths En-Love-enment.
Whereas enlightenment is typically experienced as oneness with pure consciousness -- a oneness of mind -- enlovenment is a felt experience of love as the fabric of Creation. This realization is powerfully transforming -- now we, as individuated being, know that all of Creation is based in love and that love is omnipresent. This ultimately dissolves away all fear and separation, and imbues us with a loving, compassionate embrace of all life.
Diving into En-love-enment
Unification with love~oneness or God becomes the path to the unification of all that is unlike itself. This process carries us right into the middle of the ego-personality, where each of us will certainly find much that has been held outside the embrace of love~oneness. The foundation of the separate ego/personality self sense is the core illusion of separation and the innate existential fear this evokes. Our primary childhood woundings, involving those who, because of their own wounding, were unable to consistently hold us in love~oneness, convince the non-reflective, infantile mind that the illusions of fear and separation are real. In response, a separate ego/personality develops in order to survive in this “hostile” world.
The separate ego goes about the work of sculpting a personality by building a mask that best gets its needs met, while suppressing in the subconscious whatever it believes threatens its safety and survival. Gradually, this personality becomes who we think we are. Of course, it is not in the least who we reallly are. At best, it is a fragmented assemblage of identities, few of which are in harmony with one another, much less the larger sphere of Life. This fundamental disharmony manifests at all levels of being -- spiritual, mental, emotional, and etheric/physical.
There is only one true source of healing and wholing -- the truth of our core being as the living presence of love-oneness. When the fragmented and dis-eased aspects of the psyche are brought into the unifying presence of love, they begin to be restored and resurrected to their innate soulful nature. Those parts of our being that were fearfully exiled to the basement of the unconscious rise up to be expressed as whole, love-infused, integrated aspects of the personality. Shame and guilt dissolve in the knowing of our true sinlessness and eternal, unquestionable value as divine souls. Where there was withdrawal, contraction and blockage, life energy flows and healing occurs.
As mentioned above, God realization and love~oneness are intimately connected, as universal love is an emanation of the divine presence. Going deeper into love, all that remains is the living presence of God the One; to separate or even clearly differentiate this from love and oneness becomes impossible.
Enlovenment, the realization of saints and lovers of God throughout history, has been demonstrated by the Christian mystics’ fervent adoration of Jesus the Christ, the God-intoxicated Hindu saints, and Sufis drunk on the Beloved. The heart aflame with a passionate love of God possesses a willingness to give all, surrender all into its fiery, all-consuming presence. In the end the separate self is immolated, burned into the nothingness that it has always been.
The frequences of energy and consciousness we hold within ourselves, sooner or later, one way or another, outpicture as our outer reality. Whatever we hold most near and dear -- whatever we “love” the most -- is what we create, whether our experience is challenging or seemingly miraculous. When we love God more than anything and yearn for nothing but God, manifestations of the divine begin to crop up all around us. In one in whom en-love-enment is blossoming, siddhis and spiritual gifts may unfold. So much love flows through such a being that outer reality can rapidly shift and morph to reflect the truth of the divine nature of whoever or whatever is experiencing dis-ease. In this way, miraculous healings occur.
The opening of the heart soul center also results in a coordination of the activities of the head and belly soul centers, for it is the center that lies between them. Just as the heart chakra unites the lower and upper chakras, so too does the heart soul center mediate the integration of non-dual, transcendental awareness with the earthy, life-engaging consciousness of the hara/tan tien or belly center. True oneness flowers through loving and including all parts of the journey, as well as all parts of ourselves, and this ongoing process focalizes in the heart soul center.
To deny the oneness of the imminent expression of God as our bodies and the earth, while seeking union only in the transcendental, can only lead to imbalance. Awakening to the heart soul center, we become able to love and include all parts of our humanness as w”holy” divine aspects of our true nature. In the soul’s “heart of oneness,” all is embraced, loved and made whole.
As previously suppressed and denied aspects of the psyche are welcomed into the “heart of oneness,” it expands and enfolds even that which we have viewed as irredeemable. Realization of this center is synonymous with knowing that all parts of us are worthy, inextricable facets of the One. We no longer need to try to fix, change or get rid of even our most difficult shadow aspects. All are seen as parts of the divine that have become distorted because of judgment and exclusion. As we bring them back into the spiritual heart center, we experience their transformation and re-integration as integral aspects of the soul.
The Limits of En-Love-enment
When this center has awakened without a corresponding state of enlightenment, a dualism or separation between self and God can remain. A higher power or source is perceived as residing above and beyond one’s own self. Even while miracles may be common in the individual’s life, they seem to emanate from an external God.
If the head soul center has not yet been sufficiently activated, the great love that flows from an awakened heart of hearts may be expressed without a corresponding sense of intelligent clarity. The kindness and generosity that flow from such a person may be taken advantage of, for discernment is lacking. There may be a desire to give as much as possible to everyone in need, which may not be the part of wisdom. Burnout can result.
If the spiritual heart has been blasted open without a corresponding awakening of the belly soul center, the enormous love that is experienced may not have sufficient grounding to support it. There may be a sense of overwhelm at feeling such extreme love for everyone and everything, and a confusion about how to live such love. As the belly soul center comes into balance with the heart opening, the great, all-pervading love can then find expression in grounded, ongoing ways. The life pattern increasingly provides a sturdy, trustworthy container in which the love can be lived. The overwhelming tsunamis of ecstatic love give way to a gentler, subtler, everpresent undercurrent of love which is deeply known to be the unifying fabric of one’s life.
The heart soul center may be quite developed, and love and intelligence may be evolving toward a healthy balance, yet one’s outer life conditions may reflect a lack of attention to and honoring of the belly soul center. This may manifest as persistent poverty, physical dis-ease, particularly in the belly region, frequent changes of address or homelessness, and feeling world-weary. Although one may be able to access the soul’s wisdom with ease, a sense of joy in living on Earth in a physical body may seem elusive. The simple, sensual pleasures of incarnation may seem distant and out of reach, available to others but somehow inappropriate for oneself.