Practice: A Compassionate Heart
At our core...we are compassionate beings
Podcast recorded Thursday, September 7, 2023. The text that follows is an edited transcript of the podcast. Enjoy!
Welcome to the Moving into Spirit Podcast - Episode #5
Hello and welcome to the Moving into Spirit Podcast! Michelle Crider here, founder of Elk Mountain Wellness, LLC.
I look forward to taking you through a practice on compassion today, but first I thought it would be helpful to review the article published earlier this week titled:
In this article I discuss finding compassion at your core, and how, when we are in touch with our compassionate selves, we can then determine, decide, and act on how we want to feel when we wake up every morning.
As well, at any given point throughout the day, we can go back to this compassionate being within ourselves and revisit how we want to feel. Because…
When we feel, we are in touch with sensation.
At the very beginning of the article, I offer you some questions. Let's review those here.
First, are you asking yourself, “How do I want to feel?”
Second, upon asking that question, are you intending that emotion or sensation of feeling into being?
Are you allowing yourself to cultivate that emotion or sensation in your body throughout the day?
- OR -
Is feeling, in the form of an emotion or a physical sensation in the body, something that happens to you, something that you don't necessarily feel you have control over?
These are two very different ways of being, feeling, or sensing.
You are either saying…
“I want to feel a very certain way,” and you commit to feeling this way from the moment you get out of bed in the morning to the moment you hop back in bed for the night.
- OR -
Events, interactions, occurrences happen throughout the day which cause you to feel, which cause a reaction, that then causes a feeling inside.
I think we can generally say, when we are feeling anxious, it's because we've had a thought that then creates the sensation(s) of butterflies in the stomach, or a headache, or any negative feeling or sensation in the body.
Or it's because we've had an interaction with an individual, or something has occurred in our outside, external, out-of-body environment that then creates the sensations of that felt anxiety.
In this case, an external factor creates the felt sense.
Instead, our goal is to have an internal consideration of how we want to feel, what we want to feel in the body or a sensation, paired with an emotional feeling or emotional state that we attempt to cultivate each morning when we wake up, and work at keeping with us throughout day.
Considerations for Invoking Compassion
Let’s review compassion and how holding a compassionate state, having an ability to feel in a compassionate way towards ourselves and others, can help us bring about and get in touch with our preferred feeling states, and how we can use and work with feeling, sensation, and the ability to be compassionate.
In order to invoke or manifest any feeling we would like to have throughout our days, I find it useful to learn about and understand the first two limbs of the system of yoga.
These are the yamas and the niyamas, and my goodness are these ever the foundations for connecting with ourselves, connecting with that which is greater than ourselves, connecting with the life force that breathes us all into being and keeps us here - planted on earth in our bodies, with our families, in community.
Compassion…or Ahimsa, a Sanskrit word...
Ahimsa, translated as non-harming, is critical not only in living but also we are guided toward non-harming through the Ten Commandments, to: do unto others…
There is that underlying non-harming, but it's also, I think, a much more beautiful, workable way to flip it and call this compassion, love. Because at our being, at our core, we are compassionate, loving beings.
In this article, I offer you some prompts on how we can intend or manifest how we want to feel into reality, into being, into action. Perhaps you’d like to review and make some journal notes from these considerations.
Guided Meditation…A Compassionate Heart
Let's take a few moments with those considerations in mind.
We can pause and allow compassion to bubble forth, from the core of our hearts.
If you'd like to pause here with me and take a few breaths.
Sitting quietly, maybe even pressing pause on this recording here and taking yourself to a comfortable place, a beautiful place.
Maybe you walk outside and you sit in the grass or you lay down in bed for a few moments.
Allow yourself to settle in, but feel free to pause here, and when you're ready…
Perhaps you'd like to soften your eyes, maybe even close them if that feels comfortable.
Maybe you'd like to place your arms and hands alongside your body or maybe even place your hands at your heart center.
Find what feels right and comfortable in this moment.
Getting in touch with and tuned into your breath.
Perhaps even allowing a softening.
Maybe there's tension being held in the shoulders, the jaw, the back, somewhere in the body.
Maybe there's some physical, felt tension, tightness.
And seeing, with each inhale and exhale, if there can be a softening of these areas of the physical body.
Perhaps you're even holding a heavy emotion, some sadness, some worry, some overwhelm.
Perhaps there's a hurt you're holding onto in your heart.
Perhaps with each inhale and exhale you allow the heart to soften, gently and lovingly soften.
And now we'll take one more cleansing inhale, inhaling and mindfully saying to yourself in the silence of your own heart…
Inhaling, “I am.”
And on the exhale, whispering to yourself at your heart center, “compassion.”
Inhaling with the words I am.
Exhaling with the word compassion.
And as you're holding yourself softly, gently and lovingly here, allow this consideration - that you are a compassionate being - to come forward.
When you become the energetic equivalent of compassion, when you vibrate with the energy of compassion from your heart center, you alter the direction of your life and the lives of others.
I am the energetic equivalent of compassion.
I vibrate with the energy of compassion from my radiant heart center.
I alter the direction of my life and the lives of loved ones when “I am compassion.”
Taking an inhale here, considering I am and on the exhale, compassion.
I am compassion.
You may like to remain here in this softened, compassionate state.
You may like to picture your heart center radiating light straight out from the center of your core being, out beyond your body, beyond the physical space where you are currently finding yourself resting.
Beyond the confines of this physical world…your compassionate core from your heart center radiates the most brilliant light out into the cosmos, to the universe, to that which is your God, your ultimate love.
This light radiates from your heart, touching all those you love and care for in this very moment.
This beautiful radiant light also shines throughout your entire body, warming you, softening you…
Allowing yourself to be the energetic equivalent of compassion Lighting your way forward.
Allowing yourself to sense and manifest any feeling you choose in any given moment.
Returning back to this radiant compassionate heart center…time and time again, whenever you feel the need to choose another emotion, another thought, another sensation, choosing from your compassionate core, your heart, your love.
Breathing here gently, perhaps allowing your physical body to stretch, perhaps move in the most gentle and subtle of ways.
Gently allowing your radiant, compassionate heart center to manifest, intend into being…any feeling, emotion, thought, sensation you choose…at any moment in time…again, and again, and again…
I leave you with a poem from my book Fear and Musings, A Journey from Anxiety to Peace
There is Only One Path
There is only one path and that path is love. There is only one path and that path is crooked, narrow, and grim. There is only one path and that path is beautiful, breath-filled, and hope-full. There is only one path and that path is paved with pure intentions and peace. Always, always, always paved with pure intentions and peace. There is only one path and that path is mindfully chosen. There is only one path and that path is filled with freedom. There is only one path and that path is yours. There is only one path and that path is love. There is only one path and that path is, I pray, filled with love, compassion, and light.
My dear one, allow yourself to consider compassion today and return to this practice anytime you feel the need.
My peace I share with you, dear compassionate one, until we meet again…
Take good care and peace.
Moving Into Spirit Subscribers…SAVE 20%
In gratitude for your loyalty and genuine interest in this work…because it’s my birthday month(!)…and because I want you to find your compassionate core in order to help reduce your anxiety, worry, overwhelm, stress…you can save 20% on all 1:1 yoga & meditation services with code:
This code good now through September 30th! Just enter the code on the payment page!
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