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action personal development personal engagement personal engagement

My Fear of Heartspace

It’s easy to be afraid of becoming engaged in your self. We may spend our lifetime surrounded by people and things and experiences, filling our heads with ideas and our hearts with emotions, and never truly understanding what lies within. Heartspace is a tender understanding within each of us. It is something bigger than ourselves, yet something that is each of us, individually.

Actor Alan Alda once wrote, “You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.” For me, that journey of discovery has gone beyond anything I have ever done. It has required a kind of bravery I have never known in my life, a kind that didn’t show easily. Developing my commitment to myself has taken me through harrowing white water rapids from my past, confronted me with grand canyons of unacknowledged emotions, and surrounded me with the abrupt solitude of self-knowingness. I have suddenly started to demonstrate the deepest self-sustainability I have ever known as I have come to understand the smooth waters of complacency. Lately I have sought to maintain the easy sailing I am experiencing these days.

That easy sailing has not coming because of anything around me. The world I live in is filled with a lot of roles: Being a full-time dad, working for a living, living a healthy lifestyle, all of these things. I have learned to release, get rid of, or extinguish the things that hurt me or deflate me, which wasn’t easy work. My history wants to be present right now, and the future calls out for me a lot, especially when I’m alone in the middle of the night. But all of these actions in my life, all these situations and occurrences, they are things outside of me, hiding spots under rocks and in thickets along the narrow trail to the meadow where I rest these days.

Surrounding me, too, are all these books, workshops, retreats, and seminars. There are lectures online and songs from musicians; movies and plays, poetry and stories. I read theories and examine plot lines, memorize lyrics and recite cool sonnets. My friends tell me stories and my family reminds me of their interpretations all the time. Everyday I live stories, too, that have all the elements of great dramas, comedy routines, and sitcoms, all wrapped into one convenient life.

But I have finally, finally learned what Rumi meant when he insisted, “Stop searching here and there. The jewels are inside you.”

Before I did that I had to get over my fear of Heartspace. Once I did that, I became rapidly, massively engaged within myself. This has strengthened my ability to connect with the world in a way that I would have never estimated. Now that I know it, I will never let it go.

“Your hearts know in silence the secrets of the days and the nights.
But your ears thirst for the sound of your heart’s knowledge.
You would know in words that which you have always known in thought.
You would touch with your fingers the naked body of your dreams.
And it is well you should.
The hidden well-spring of your soul must rise and run murmuring to the sea;
And the treasure of your infinite depths would be revealed to your eyes.
But let there be no scales to weigh your unknown treasure;
And seek not the depths of your knowledge with staff or sounding line.
For self is a sea boundless and measureless.
Say not, “I have found the truth,” but rather, “I have found a truth.”
Say not, “I have found the path of the soul.” Say rather, “I have met the soul walking upon my path.”
For the soul walks upon all paths.
The soul walks not upon a line, neither does it grow like a reed.
The soul unfolds itself like a lotus of countless petals.”

Khalil Giban, The Prophet

I release my fear of Heartspace every single day, and at many moments throughout my days. I am learning to face the things that challenge me most by engaging deeper inside myself every time I have the opportunity to, and sometimes I miss those opportunities. I still get upset, scared, lonely, and hungry. The difference now is that I am learning through those occasions. I engage with myself, explore my uncertainties, indifferences, and apathies. I want to help other people do the same.

If you are ready to go to your Heartspace, simply go. Connect within yourself and take the journey, self-guided, towards a brave new future. If you would like to read more about what I have learned, send me an email to adam@commonaction.org and I will send you a free e-book.

Written by Adam Fletcher, this article was originally posted to http://commonaction.blogspot.com. Learn more at adamfletcher.net!

By Adam F.C. Fletcher

I'm a speaker, writer, trainer, researcher and advocate who researches, writes and shares about education, youth, and history.

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