The Heart Speaks

I received a handwritten letter yesterday from my friend “Angelique”.  It was 30 pages long.

Yes, it took me awhile for that to sink in.  And the letter wasn’t “I did this, I did that”.  Instead, it was an outpouring of the woman’s soul.  And I was privileged to be on the receiving end.

Page after page, my writer friend was naked, open to my gaze, no doubt realizing that I would hold her heart gently.  As I ended my journey on Page 30, I felt overwhelmed.  Fear ran through me.  How can I possibly reply to this?  I still don’t know what to do.

Angelique previously gave me permission to quote her words anonymously on WordPress, hopefully as a gift to you.  So I’ll continue that today.  But before sharing her thoughts, I’m sitting here stunned.  How often does another human being show you everything?  How often do they trust you so deeply?

I’ve begun to study the ideas of Patricia Albere.  She talks about “mutual awakening”, in which two people (family, friends or lovers) look way deep into each other’s eyes and feel the divinity there.  Angelique, I believe, held nothing back.  The eyes of the printed page seeped beneath my skin to the deepest parts.

Is it possible that you, reading some of her soul-filled comments, will feel that union as well?  Let’s find out.

When I write letters, I truly enjoy the writing itself, which is a kind of artistry.  I might start using a more beautiful pen with a plume (!) and dip it in ink or something more artistic, to truly enjoy writing to the maximum and to create a more beautiful letter (as a gift) to whomever I am writing.

I went to Plum Village in France, where Thich Nhat Hanh’s monasteries are … Everything became meditation practice and the three monasteries and the grounds surrounding them are filled with this energy.  And it is powerful! … When people first arrive and sit down to eat, many start crying because that strong energy of mindfulness brings them down to the pain inside themselves they have been ignoring being busy.

Whatever I do now is better, more profound, more meaningful, more satisfying and better received by my colleagues, friends and family, and I am much more relaxed, happy and feel as if I am always in touch with the divine, God, consciousness as I experience it – the wisdom and consciousness of the cosmos!

Sometimes I fail, and mindlessness emerges and messes up things.  I do my best to be alert and make amends right away and to change, to grow, to evolve and be more mindful.  It’s a practice, and I am committed!

My beloved father, who passed away in winter, 2007, all but physically appeared.  I could feel the heat of his body next to mine when I went for walks.  One morning, I awoke with his breath whispering in my ear “I love you” and since then I have known he is always with me.  It is impossible for us to be separate.  I often see his beautiful physical form in my mind’s eye, happy and contented with my behavior.

I appreciated the concern you expressed.  I felt it was God speaking actually in the present moment and that all was as it should be.  I knew good judgment had been used to break silence in that moment.  Thank you for allowing yourself to be an instrument of the divine at that time.

***

Angelique’s last comment, about a moment we shared during the meditation retreat, is such a gift to me.  I feel seen.  My intentions are understood.  I’m not just a separate “thing”.

We can be such blessings to each other … in the written word, while we stand face-to-face, and in our thoughts.  Thank you, Angelique.

 

Self-Disclosure

To what extent in this life do you share with others the truth about yourself, the good things and the bad?  Well, it depends on the you.  I think letting people know about my feet of clay, as well as my triumphal moments, frees up my body and soul … to flow.  And if the energy is moving largely unimpeded, I can touch other human beings.

Which brings me to Roberto Osuna.  He’s a relief pitcher with the Toronto Blue Jays, a young guy.  Imagine the pressure of coming on in the late innings with the bases loaded and the game on the line.  A few days ago, he did something remarkable: he told the world that he had anxiety issues and right then he was feeling “lost”.  So much for the male ego ruling the day.  Instead, the human heart had its say.  Well done, Roberto.  Some folks will be highly critical when you tell the truth.  Some will be clapping their hands.  But sooner or later you will have a tiny smile on your face.  No more charade.  No more looking over your shoulder to see who’s there.  No more being strategically careful.

I remember being in a meeting about the computer needs of a visually impaired student.  I’m okay with computer stuff but no whiz.  It seemed like everyone else in the room knew far more, and I too became lost.  What to do?  Fake understanding?  Cover up my terror with a big smile?  Press hard to control the shakes?  I chose elsewhere.  I told the assembly that I didn’t understand what people were saying, that I was feeling overwhelmed, and I needed to leave the meeting.  Which I did.  There was no tiny smile on my lips, just a red face.  The smile came later.

In Sunday’s sports section of The Toronto Sun, Steve Simmons had his say about Roberto:

“I can’t begin to tell you I know what Roberto Osuna is feeling.

I do know how troubling it can be when you lose a portion of yourself and you don’t necessarily know why.

But I can tell you with absolute certainty, from my own experiences, from the daily challenges, that the challenges of anxiety and mental illness aren’t easily explained or understood and they can be all-consuming.

Hopefully Osuna gets the kind of help he needs and finds the kind of peace all of us deserve.”

Well said, Steve
Well said, Roberto
Well said, me