Last week, I was thinking about a present for someone, but could not come up with something fitting. Until hours later that day, when my eye fell on a book in my bookcase, and seemingly out of nowhere his name popped up instantly. Apparently, this was the present I had been looking for. There have been times, not so long ago, where I would have neglected such an impulse and moved on, but nowadays, I honor them. Even though I had no idea why this book inspired his name and giving it was way outside of my comfort zone, I gave it anyway. As he thanked me for the book something interesting happened, I felt nervousness wash through me, fear. And I wasn’t able to stay present and accept his gratitude open-heartedly. Miraculously, I had picked the right book, he was genuinely pleased, and instead of celebrating the awesomeness of that co-creation, I felt awkward and clumsy. In that moment, I was acutely aware of the fact that I was blocking the energy that had started to move the moment I intended to thank him with a gift, from flowing back into my heart. That hurt.
Life, the Energy that inspires life, enters our head, then ideally moves unhinderedly all the way down to the ground and goes back up again. Very early in my life, the absence of reciprocation felt so overwhelming to me that in order to protect myself, I blocked part of my heart. I tried to control the flow of Life by allowing less Energy to flow through. I tuned down my capacity to feel. And in doing so, I, ironically, shut myself off from what I craved the most, Love. When I talk about Love, I don’t talk about the emotion. The emotion love is our heart’s translation of this universal energy that is in essence unknowable. I call it many things, Life, God, Source, Universe, but in this essay, Love seems most fitting.
When we interact with others, this Energy makes a loop. When shared, it flows out of the heart, probably literally, in the direction of the heart of another. Our heart energy meets their heart energy, they resonate, they are amplified and flow back into our individual hearts with a greater intensity, which then becomes part of our individual systems, and we feel richer for it. That is, when we are able to fully receive the energy that comes back.The heart energy connection always happens. No heart is completely closed. Love recognizes Love, no matter what it looks like. Even if our hearts are partially closed and unable to fully allow Love to flow through, the heart energy that is flowing out will connect with another person’s heart energy and be amplified, even if only a bit. But whereas completely open hearts can receive all of the energy that comes back, a partially closed heart can only receive some of the energy that comes back. And depending on the level of heart energy they connected with they either will feel richer, loved, or deprived, unloved. People who have drastically tuned down their capacity to feel, which means that they block a lot of Life energy from entering, will often feel violated, robbed of something precious, simply because they shared their most precious asset with another partially blocked heart and the energy that was allowed back in, was less than what had they invested in the first place, a negative return on investment, a depletion.
Over two years ago, my blocked heart was broken open (you can read about that here). From that moment on, I have actively been unblocking the parts of my body that were blocking the Energy from flowing through. I let go of the unresolved emotional pain that was stored in my body, I let go of the hold that the past had over me. It was a very physical process; it started in my heart and ended in my pelvis, a top-down process. What is happening now is different, it is a letting go of patterns I created in order to protect myself from pain, it is a letting go of control, or better the illusion of control. It is a process of surrendering in which I am opening up to receiving. It started near the pelvis and is going up in my body. It is a bottom-up process. Recently, I let go of the illusion that I can physically and mentally control this world, my value, and my body. Now I am revisiting the heart, I am letting go of the illusion that I can control what I feel, the Energy that is entering my heart, as inspiration or as return on investment. I remember someone once saying to me: you never give yourself completely, you always hold back. Back then, I did not get that. Now I do.
I am in awe of the perfection of the healing process, of the seemingly random yet highly logical order in which that what needs to be addressed comes to the surface to be dealt with. I marvel at how my body, mind and soul work together to undo that which was done and reorganize everything in such a way that it makes complete sense.
In the same year my heart was unblocked, I opened up to giving freely (if you’re interested, read here). These days, I recognize that it isn’t the perceived absence of Love that overwhelms me, it is the intensity of the Love that tries to get in that freaks me out, feeling Love without trying to control what I feel, receiving it with an open heart. To not control the flow of Love, to surrender to something that is in essence uncontrollable scares the living daylights out of me. I actually feel as if I might die when I do. That sounds extreme, but it is not when you realize that very small children shut down from certain emotional deprivations in order to survive, because the intensity of the pain would literally cause them to die, because their brain isn’t developed enough yet to handle the complexity of the information. My heart was blocked very early in life. That this fear is old, doesn’t make it feel less real in this moment. Yet, to get to the other side of it, I must both feel it as if it were real now and at the same time understand that it is not. I know that all is well. I will not only survive, I will thrive. So, again, I am breathing in and breathing out, feeling what is happening in my heart and letting the fear dissolve itself, because that is what happens when we choose to hold in loving awareness the fear we feel.
Apparently, in order to be able to let my guard down, to receive freely, to feel Love without censoring, to let Love complete its loop, I needed to let go of all my unresolved pain first. The current step in the process of opening up has made me aware of the unstoppable upward motion: today the surrendering of my love, next my expression, my vision and ultimately all that I believe that I am. I love how I have opened up so much that these insights are becoming more and more subtle, and gentle, as opposed to the crashing-into-a-brick-wall-head-first experiences I needed to open up. It gets better. Life gets better. I know that this Life Energy that inspires us to breathe and expand is a benign Force. It’s goal is not mere survival as Darwin theorized, it is thrival. Thrival only happens when the primary motive is Love. My journey has been and will always be to surrender to this Love. And even though surrendering to Life is both beautiful and terrifying, as are all good things in life, I know that all is well. I know that the energy that started to move the moment I decided to give a present has flowed back in a way that is more powerful than I could have ever imagined. I am deeply appreciative of this. I can only hope that the book will turn out to be as precious a gift as the one I received in giving it.