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The shapes in our hearts



Writing is cathartic for me. It helps to translate often dense energetic clusters that feel hard-packed in the body into another form. It's a kind of emotional alchemy.


I've been immersed in a course in recent weeks with Grace Bell and Todd Smith - facilitators of Byron Katie's 'The Work', which is a powerful means of bringing compassionate enquiry into (often invisible) beliefs, playing out as behaviour patterns. It's been about taking a closer look at money.. revealing all the heavy connotations around worth we give this. It's also exposed the realisation that it's much less to do with the concept of an objective thing called 'money' (which is always transient, rather than rock solid), and more about our relationship with life.


That was big.


It also shows that the areas where we have most sensitivity ('sticky thinking') or emotive charge are those that are held closer to the heart. The architecture of belief is such that what we take as truth is informed by an intricate and highly subjective play-out of life in formative years, and the way in which we've translated situations into rigid beliefs. Without question, these beliefs are the root of behaviours and mostly we only skim the surface in attempts to re-write these scripts.


The deepest truth lies in the realisation that there is no separate, controlling 'me' who is burdened with the heavy duty task of changing beliefs. Beliefs are simply there to be witnessed with a loving curiosity to unlock their potency. The 'me' that deems itself to be the originator and creator of this life of 'mine' is simply another pervasive belief.


As plot twists go, it's pretty seismic.


And yet there are dense layers of conditioned belief within each of us.. like compact rock formations, each unique, and at any point, even the most subtle erosion can entirely change the way they show up.


The heavy, compressed emotional charge of certain experiences in our lives seem to change the fabric of our being. It is in this gracious work that we sit courageously with discomfort and turn towards unease.


In a moment of acute weightiness I was moved to listen to a Mooji YouTube clip on 'Forgiveness'. At first the title seemed unrelated to the money theme, but as his poetic tones imbued me with a sensitive alertness, I realised that we are only ever talking about life and the sweet (yet chaotic) unravelling of a web of personal beliefs. Mooji ushered:


"Don't let it take shape in your heart. Let go of the shape of it."


Something in the resonance of those words stirred within. When a belief remains unquestioned it is static, solid and hard. It has definition and sharp relief. There is no looseness to it, no give. No wonder there is profound resistance.


Love, energy, flow, life (whatever vocabulary we select for this vast, unnameable source of our being) is formless. It is fluid, effortless and infinite. Forgiveness, felt to me in this moment little to do with an exchange between two people (though this may be an intrinsic part of healing a hidden pain), and more about an inner reconciliation.


A letting go of the shape of it in my heart.


There are so many ways to take a closer look at calcified non-negotiable beliefs. We might engage in traditional therapy, in holistic practices, in yoga, meditation, being in nature, music, writing or just being in life. The process matters less than the intention itself to come back to the vastness of what we are before all thoughts and beliefs. In my humble opinion, only silence is the truest language, as all words take form and are a step away from that nameless place in our hearts.


So, like catharsis, and what feels like a nomadic process wandering through the shadows of our conditioning, there is no definitive 7-step process to condense into tidy paragraphs. It is an organic, jagged inner path which has its own rhythm and takes its own undulating course.


The unravelling reveals that all things that have taken shape and residence in us are like stones to be turned. And as we take each one and hold them gently in our hearts, they erode into formlessness, reintegrated back into the flow of our being.

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