One son and I are participating in an on-line workshop with Adyashanti.  This week is about the heart.  My son is struggling to understand what it means to embody the emotional heart in the spiritual.

In going back and forth in our discussion, I remember holding hands with another as we’d swing around, both pulling as we balanced the circle until we collapsed laughing and tired on the ground.

Maybe when we discuss with another, go back and forth with thoughts, ideas, and sharing, it’s like that. We balance centrifugal force until we collapse in knowing what matters is circling with held hands and heart.

With another friend right now, we’re looking at what it is to be the first child in a family of elders, and then, second, third, fourth.  I’m a first child with all that that entails. I was worshipped as the Holy Grail. That’s lovely and there’s a pressure, too, so perhaps I still resist outside influence as I hold room for inner space.

This morning I had the image of a round card table we stored downstairs when the children were young.  One day the children pulled it out, turned it upside down and used it as a merry-go-round, which, of course, ripped the plastic cover, and didn’t do much for the structure. From then on it was either a merry-go-round, or a rather dilapidated and unstable table covered with a tablecloth.

Did it matter that it was ripped and torn and shaky on its legs? Aren’t we all beautifully put together, then turned upside down, so that when we come back up we see and function in new, perhaps unpredictable, and necessarily more creative ways?

I’m finding the political situation challenging these days.  I love the USPS.  I love to mail letters, and cards. I still enjoy paying some bills with a check and putting on a beautiful stamp and sending it off in the mail.  I find it satisfying but I got my first late charge this month and realized the mail service has purposely been slowed, so where I pay bills twice a month, I either need to pay everything on-line, or mail it back the minute it comes which may not come soon enough since slowed mail isn’t arriving far before the due date.

I recognize that these days are offering wonderful opportunities to practice our skills of equanimity. I give thanks for this daily expanding gift to stretch and circle round with joy, touch, connection, mindfulness and presence.

With that, I return to Angeles Arrien and her words on the four-chambered heart.  The Four-Chambered Heart is full, open, clear and strong. 

It’s a time, even more than usual, to ask each day.

Where am I currently full-hearted in my life and work?

Where is my heart open to new ideas, people and experiences?

What am I clear about with respect to my vision, values and behavior?

What situations require courage and perseverance, the fruit of strong-heartedness?

And here we are, dear ones of shared tenderness and care, navigating this world with circling and connected intention for full, open, clear, and strong hearts.  

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