Tag Archives: heart chakra

Chuck’s Place: Fire in the Belly

Heart chakra rising from the fire in the belly…
– Photo by Chuck Ketchel

With no judgment intended, simply honest observations, I see the world as currently being led by a force beyond reason. I call it ‘a force’ because it functions like an elemental being, a true force of nature, in this case: fire. Tweets and actions are like bolts of lightning that ignite sweeping havoc, leaving behind a whole new landscape.

I do agree with Donald Trump that if the election were held again today, he would win again. Reason is no match for this elemental being, the current ruler of the world. From the broadest perspective I ask, why has Gaia installed this conflagratory element at this time? I see the earth and humanity mirroring the same dynamic: fire in the belly.

From a chakra perspective, the belly, the solar plexus, is the birthplace of the ego. It is the place where personal power is established as it wages war with the fires and floods, the passions and emotions of the instinctual human animal. The rudimentary human spirit is born as a result of this contest, in the form of the ego. This is where Adam and Eve, with the birth of their personal egos, parted ways with the garden and ‘stole’ the power to create their own world.

Digestive issues, womb issues, intestinal issues, shallow breathing issues all reflect the challenge of fire in the belly—how to master it, how not to be consumed by it, and how to workably transform it. Psychologically this is the place of personal power, calling for the establishment of a self, a foothold in consciousness that can control and transform the deep instinctual forces within, as well as hold its own without, amidst the vast collective forces that inhabit the human jungle. The downside of this achievement is narcissism, the very narrow imperative of me and mine.

Humanity has been Gaia’s most recent catalyst of change. Who else beside humans has so drastically changed the face of the earth? I propose that Gaia is calling for a rise of kundalini energy from her third chakra to her fourth chakra, the heart center. The heart center is the true birthplace of the true spirit self, the self that extends far beyond the narcissistic wrappings of the third chakra ego center.

The way to the heart chakra is through the all-consuming fires of the belly. As kundalini rises the wrappings of consumerism, personal power, and advantage, at the third chakra ego center, burn off and what emerges, transformed, is consciousness of a higher self, what we know as the subtle body, the energy body, the spirit.

The spirit body at the heart center is attached to the gross physical body by its own umbilical cord that remains attached until the spirit embarks on its own definitive journey beyond physical life at the time of death.

While in this world, the spirit informs human life from its truer perspective. This is the Buddha/Christ consciousness that speaks the truth beyond the narcissistic wrappings of ego. This is the home of true compassion, not emotional highs and lows or romantic dances. This is the home of being able to see and act upon the true needs of self, the true needs of humanity, the true needs of Gaia.

The driving forces of human passion and emotion simmer gently at the heart center, which burns a constant flame, the steady heartbeat that maintains life. Compassion is natural love that embraces all life with true feeling, yet knows that the only true savior lies in the heart center of each individual. Each person must find their own way there and discover this for themselves.

Gaia insists upon this heart chakra development now. The crowning achievement of the solar plexus, the ego, with reason and its knowledge of the three dimensional world at the ready, has become too narrow a place to fully encompass and lead the fuller truth of the earth. This higher spirit at the heart center must be awakened, inhabited, and become the leader now.

Gaia’s methods can be harsh. All births are violent affairs. Contractions are no picnic for the birther or the one being born. Actually, preparations for discovery of the spirit within have long been appearing. One need only peruse Jan’s Recapitulation Diaries to see how the violence of sexual abuse can shake the ethereal/spirit body right out of the physical body.

Of course, such horrific atrocities as sexual abuse are completely, morally unjustifiable, but vast occurrences of such happenings have given countless thousands direct access to and experience of their inner spirit selves, as they often fly freely beyond the confines of the body during blunt trauma. What emerges on the world stage and in the personal lives of many humans at this time are the shocks, which though traumatic also open access to a consciousness that transcends the personal me and can align with the true needs of the interconnected we.

What has become completely apparent to me is that Gaia herself is in the process of shaking loose her spirit body, attempting to rise to the fourth chakra level of the heart. Gaia is prompting her own evolution, and humankind is the enzyme, the catalyst—rule without reason—that is providing the energy for this transition. It is a completely irrational and barely controllable catalyst that is the driving force behind this phenomenon, but nonetheless an obvious attempt to reach the heart chakra of Gaia and prompt human evolution as well.

The only hope to stabilize humanity and save the planet is to reach the heart-centered spirit consciousness of which we are all capable, and allow that spirit energy to lead us all forward now.

The heart center is the center that acts from objective truth. Reason and emotion that have passed through the proving fires of the solar plexus take up residence in their most purified form in the heart center, where they are freed to lead through love and truth.

Of course, there are higher chakras to be inhabited beyond the heart, but for now Gaia insists that we find our way, collectively, to settling in the heart. That quest is the priority of now.

And so, as we sit in the irrational fires beyond reason, may we allow ourselves to prove our worthiness to partake in Gaia’s initiative and settle calmly in the heart center of our being.

Stillness in the fire,

Chuck

Lessons in a Life: The Journey Through Detachment To Compassion

Chuck and I were sitting in a favorite spot one night recently, talking quietly about the events of the day. I had a pain. Persistent and relentlessly present it had bothered me all day. I am not one to complain, nor do I often have an affliction, but this one had gotten its claws into me and would not let go. Chuck was aware. My countenance alone was enough for him to know.

A Portrait of Detachment & Compassion... - Artist unknown
A Portrait of Detachment & Compassion…
– Artist unknown

As we talked I glanced up at a print on the wall, a portrait of the Virgin Mary. I post it here so you can see it for yourself. I had always noticed how detached she seemed, this beautiful being, as painted by the artist. Her gaze is a little to the side and down. She does not look directly at the viewer. In her heart chakra sits a large and fiery heart, radiant it sends out beams of light. Though she is not touching the heart, the Virgin’s hands nonetheless keep it exposed.

Even while being present in the room with Chuck, another part of me—the Observer Self or High Self—began an interaction with the portrait. “You seem so detached,” I said. “How can you be so detached and yet be the healer that you are? People have flocked to you, prayed to you, begged to be healed, to be forgiven, to be made whole. Look at me. I’m in pain. Will you take pity on me and heal me? Right now?”

My innocence reached out. Within seconds I felt a change taking place in my body. Chuck noticed it too. “You’re getting better,” he said, with certainty. “Yes, I am,” I said, though I did not tell him of my telepathic conversation with the Virgin Mary. Instead, I started to doubt. Perhaps all the herbal remedies and the meditative exercises I had been doing all day, the Netting that I had written about several weeks ago and other exercises in detaching from negative energies were finally kicking in. But as soon as the doubt arose my High Self spoke up very loudly: “Cut it out! Face the truth and thank her!”

This time, as I turned to the portrait, I noticed that the Virgin was gazing right into my eyes and that her own eyes were filled with compassion. Instantly, I understood that only in learning detachment could she possibly be available to help others, that all of her energy had to be directed to her heart center, her focus always on placing her attention, intent, and energy there, for that was where she worked from. It was a place of vast energetic power. I saw that if she remained attached to anyone or anything in this world her energy would be compromised and her work would suffer.

“You really are a goddess,” I silently said to her, “the Goddess, Gaia, Earth Mother, feminine energy supreme. Though you have been categorized and labeled as something else, you are so much more than the portrait on the wall depicts you as. You have succeeded at what we are all seeking, how to be detached so that our energy may be directed into compassionate living, into the work of compassion.”

She is an example of how to be fully detached and fully loving and compassionate beings. Though her son had died she held no malice toward anyone. She turned her anger, her sorrow, her regret into something good. She did not stay attached to the things of this world. We are all aware of her many miracles, her appearances at Lourdes, Fatima, and most recently in 1981 in Medjugorje, in what is now Bosnia.

We all embody the same innocent light of dawn... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
We all embody the same innocent light of dawn…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

As I look at her looking at me, I know that everything I have learned through my connection with Jeanne is true, that we are all goddesses too, male and female, that we all have within us the same compassionate energy, the ability through sustained focus on the energy of the heart chakra to become fully compassionate healers too. It is her mission to teach us this through her own work, still taking place throughout the world.

It is not that easy to manifest in this world, Jeanne tells me today as I write this blog, to appear as the Virgin Mary has done over the centuries. If it were that easy, she says, there would be many more sighting of the great enlightened ones, and so they seek to connect and work in energetic ways. That’s why it’s so important for us to lose our self-importance and reach out, to let our innocence out of safekeeping so that it may act on our behalf.

We are all capable of this energetic contact and this directed compassion. Jeanne herself tells us this over and over again, that we are all Psychic Beings. I learned, from my recent interactions with the portrait on the wall, that to awaken this aspect in ourselves we must first achieve detachment.

Detachment means that we are not caught by anything in this world, that our energy is totally removed from everything that entices us—from sadness and self-pity, greed and longings, attachments to family or being special—the gamut of all that keeps us bound to life on earth. Our real life awaits us in energetic form. We must wake up to the truth that we can have access to that energy now, if we dare to take the journey through detachment to compassion.

Once we’ve achieved detachment, and maintain it, our energy will be fully available for the much needed work of compassion, of energetic healing and communication. I know it’s possible and that it works; I’ve done it myself. Though I am in no way perfect, I have had enough experiences to know that a path with heart is a path of detachment as well.

Rarely have I asked for compassion for myself, but my innocence was not going to let me decide the other day. It had something to show me, how energy really is all that matters, and purified energy radiating from the heart chakra, the energy of compassion, is the only way to go if we are to impact and change the world. By learning what it means to detach we sidestep getting caught by anything in this world. Through sustained and diligent attendance to where we put our energy we not only can have impact, but it becomes increasingly clear that we are all equally deserving of compassion and that everyone, even the most hardened criminal, though seriously misguided, is innocent at the core.

Perhaps my experiences will strike a chord. Perhaps your own innocence might have something to show you. Trust it. That’s all I can say, and then see what happens!

At our core is the fire of compassion... - Photo by Chuck Ketchel
At our core is the fire of compassion…
– Photo by Chuck Ketchel

I also feel that it is significant to mention that Chuck bought the portrait of the Virgin in Vatican City a few days after Jeanne had died while he was waiting for her body to be cremated in Switzerland. Jeanne had told him and their children that she would always live in their hearts. When he saw the painting that was what he was thinking. He brought the portrait home in his suitcase, nestled next to Jeanne’s ashes.

From the Holy City, a place of such powerful energy, this portrait of a loving and compassionate heart traveled here, and we have been under its gaze ever since. It is finally time to tap into its energy and its message. I pass it on.

With love and compassion,
Jan

Chuck’s Place: Finding The True Heart

Don Juan’s fundamental guidance to Carlos Castaneda was to choose a path with heart, for “a path with heart is easy—it does not make a warrior work at liking it; it makes for a joyful journey; as long as a man [or woman] follows it, he [she] is one with it.” *

We all have a two-part heart... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
We all have a two-part heart…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Here don Juan speaks to what Sri Aurobindo called being in alignment with the Divine Spark, the Psychic Being hidden in the cave at the center of the heart chakra. To realize the truth of this Divine Spark as one’s path in this life is to truly find and traverse one’s path with heart. And yet, the heart is of two parts, its emotional side offering “an obscure and often uncertain and misleading power,” as Aurobindo states, as well as behind that emotional heart, “a profounder mystic light which, if not what we call intuition…has yet a direct touch upon Truth and is nearer the Divine that the human intellect in its pride of knowledge.” ** This second, mystical heart, is the heart that is hidden in the cave at the center of the heart chakra, this is the true heart that seeks and recognizes a path with heart.

On a physical level the heart is the center of life and vitality in the body. There is no physical life without a heartbeat. The movement of the heart distributes energy to every cell of the body to enable all cells to act. This action extends to emotional life, where feelings spur human action and interaction.

Aurobindo states: “…there is in front in men a heart of vital emotion similar to the animal’s, if more variously developed; its emotions are governed by egoistic passion, blind instinctive affections and all the play of the life-impulses with their imperfections, perversions, often sordid degradations,—heart besieged and given over to the lusts, desires, wraths, intense or fierce demands or little greeds and mean pettinesses of an obscure and fallen life-force and debased by its slavery to any and every impulse.” **

Here Aurobindo refers to the heart’s action capacity as being under the dominance of the three lower chakras, animal instincts ruled by the archetypal governances or gods of the planetary being at its purely survival mode, as well as a mixture of ego-willfulness supplanting nature’s imperative to its own self-serving ends. (See last week’s blogpost for further explanation: Beyond Archetypal Bondage)

Here arises confusion at the heart center, for though the emotional heart dominates through much of life this irrational emotive center is incapable of guiding the true needs of the Self, the higher being that we all are. This part of the heart chakra, with all its powerful emotionality, provides the justification for the rise to order and reason of the rational mind, as it insists on its superiority and hegemony over the vagaries of the feeling heart.

Rationality is like a predator, constantly swooping in to reassert its presence... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Rationality is like a predator, constantly swooping in to reassert its presence…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

Aurobindo comments: “This mixture of the emotive heart and the sensational hungering vital creates in man a false soul of desire; it is this that is the crude and dangerous element which the reason rightly distrusts and feels a need to control, even though the actual control or rather coercion it succeeds in establishing over our raw and insistent vital nature remains always very uncertain and deceptive.” ***

Unfortunately, attempts at rational control over emotive behavior, or cognitive behavioral therapy, rarely quell the base impulses raging in the heart. More often than not they are sentenced to the prison of the shadow unconscious where they lie in wait, scheming their next disruptive moves. The apparent calm after the storm is generally short-lived.

How many times couples find themselves immediately reignited in a conflict, after a voluntary break for calming and cooling, reflects the thin veil of control reason holds over the fiery energy of an ignited heart.

Though reason might offer a pause, it cannot settle matters of the true heart. For don Juan, reason would be a false path, not the path that could be guided by spirit. How then does one go about achieving the quiet heart, of locating “the true invisible heart hidden in the luminous cave” *** of the heart center, and truly find a path with heart.

Tibetan Buddhism has developed the practice of Tonglen breathing where the fire of emotion is allowed to burn off and transform in the heart center, through breathing in the fire that wants to attack or attach outwardly and breathing out a cooler breath of compassion. This is an alchemical process of transforming emotional heat into the steady flame of cool luminosity utilizing the heart chamber as the retort, or flask, to burn off the impurities of the lower chakras to arrive at truth and compassion. Once we find our way to true compassion, compassion that is not tainted with sympathy, empathy, or guilt, we’ve entered the cave of objective truth where the cool Divine Spark glows in all its luminosity.

Behind the known heart lies the cave of the luminous heart... - Photo by Jan Ketchel
Behind the known heart lies the cave of the luminous heart…
– Photo by Jan Ketchel

The I Ching in the hexagram Ken, the Mountain, hints at the practice of yoga as a method to still the restlessness of the heart, another alchemical process. Regardless of methodology, the essence of an alchemical practice is to contain the energy of the lower chakras that would drive the heart to outbursts of emotive activity. Through containment of this emotional energy a transformation takes place whereby the cave of the hidden mystical heart appears. Then the Psychic Being, the true higher Self, is available to come forth and take the reins in right action.

In opening access to the true heart chakra where the Psychic Being resides, that inmost link to Divine Soul, only truth and compassion flow. As Aurobindo states: “It is as this psychic being in him grows and the movements of the heart reflect its divinations and impulsions that man becomes more and more aware of his soul, ceases to be a superior animal, and, awakening to glimpses of the godhead within him, admits more and more its intimations of a deeper life and consciousness and an impulse towards things divine.” ****

The path to unveil the hidden heart is truly the path with heart.

With compassion,
Chuck

References:
* The Wheel of Time, Castaneda, p. 19
** The Psychic Being, Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, p 26
*** The Psychic Being, Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, p 27
**** The Psychic Being, Sri Aurobindo and The Mother, p 27-28