Awakening the Heart in Meditation

Let’s first talk about the experience of awakening the heart in meditation.  It begins with a feeling of pleasurable peace around the center of your chest.  Then, from the center of your chest, you feel an opening.  You can actually feel it on the physical level.  Although physically nothing is happening, the experience is not just subtle, it is quite noticeable.  

Most who practice meditation on a daily basis can relate to the experience of pain in the solar plexus or the center of the chest.  This is the energy moving against blocks in this area of the body.  Many people give up meditation at this point because this pain seems to be never ending, and with the pain comes the feeling of being separate from everything.

But when your heart begins to awaken in meditation, this pain is gone.  Instead there is a feeling of an opening.  It is very pleasant.  Sometimes it may feel as though your whole ribcage is opening up.  But again, it is not painful nor is anything actually happening at the physical level that you need to worry about.

Heart awakening might feel like a hole in your chest, not in a negative way but as an opening, and out of that opening flows divine energy which is felt as unconditional love, peace or bliss.  It can even feel as though you are breathing out of this opening.  And as the energy flows out of this opening, the opening expands, and as the opening expands, more energy flows out of this center.  You begin to radiate divine energy (Shakti) from the center of your chest.

When you experience your heart awakening, you feel absolutely complete, in want of nothing.  You feel unconditional love in a way that is beyond all emotion.  

Often people mistake heart awakening as simply an emotional experience.  Perhaps emotion may be there at times, but this experience of unconditional love is completely beyond emotion.  It leaves you completely fulfilled, completely at peace.  

Heart awakening takes you completely beyond yourself as you know yourself to be.  The “me” with all of its problems, worries and self importance seems to be completely absent.  You expand beyond the sense of separateness into your true nature of unconditional peace.  You feel unconditional joy.

This is usually known as the first level of self realization.

Meditation is often the main practice used for heart awakening to happen.  It is most important to really allow yourself to feel whatever sensations are here.  With this practice you learn to surrender more and more into this moment, allowing the heart to awaken.

The use of prana/breathing techniques can also be very helpful.  Most importantly,  Shaktipat / Deeksha from a fully enlightened teacher is usually needed for full heart awakening to happen.

Try this breathing-meditation technique based on Japa that can be very helpful to awaken the heart:  While you sit in meditation, silently repeat the name of a saint, Guru or God of your choice once on the inhale and once on the exhale. …

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