Xin ~ Heartmind

Existential Research, mind and body, Perception

the first paragraph of this post is from:

In The Healing Promise Of Qi, Roger Jahnke writes:

The middle Elixir Field, sometimes called the heart Dan Tian, is the residence of the mind and spirit according to Chinese medicine and philosophy. In Chinese, there is no discrete concept for mind, nor is there a discrete concept for heart. One single concept, Xin (pronounced “shin”), embraces both. Confused Western translators have struggled with this, often translating Xin only as “heart” or only as “mind.” There is no heart and there is no mind, there is only Xin – HeartMind.

I notice a lot of therapists, teachers, guru’s being very convinced that thinking most of the time is a bad thing. You should meditate and stop the internal dialog. I have noticed this made me doubt about my own thinking and making it a subject with a negative emotional charge. Thinking makes me unhappy, makes me live in my head, makes me stop living in the now and experiencing my surroundings.

This was all very true as I have in fact been living in my head for a big part of my life. It has been a prison. So first I tried stopping the negative thoughts and only thinking positive thoughts. Later I read in Carlos Castaneda’s books about “stopping the internal dialog”. I tried lots of times, but never arrived at a point where I would stop my thinking for long periods of time. On some moments I thought I had big breakthroughs but a lot of time it was just hard work for nothing and it had nasty side effects. I couldn’t concentrate and I often got confused as I tried so hard to stop the internal dialog because I “compressed” or pushed my thought away. This gave me a smaller amount of thinking in my head , but it didn’t help me relax and get an open mind.

When I read the above text about Xin I realized something. Thinking in itself isn’t bad. It’s bad when you loose the connection with your heart. Thinking needs to be balanced, this happens when you connect your thinking to your heart.

How does this work? What are possible guiding principles?

  • Trying to have the sensation of an open heart while you think might alter your thinking in a positive way. “Follow your heart” means that if you concentrate on your heart physically,  your thinking might change. It is not your physical heart you feel though, but a feeling we connected to the word “heart”. When you think about love, it makes a shift in your feeling. This might sound very logical but it is essential.
  • If you try, without love, to stop your thinking it probably won’t work and make you get even more tensed. It needs this sensation of love. You need this attitude of love towards yourself.
  • I think it is good to think of love as an abundant source. It doesn’t deplete, it doesn’t get empty. Of course you sometimes feel love and sometimes feel hate. But if I manage to believe there is no limit to the amount of love I can give this can make me much more courageous.
  • In this courage there is one essential point: our thinking doesn’t always have an answer. And if we mentally don’t get to the answer we interpret the situation as “hopeless”, we don’t believe there even could be an answer and we start loosing hope. But most of the time that ain’t true. Most of life’s situations have a solution or can be relatived. Our thinking is limited and our heart can steer our intuition and synapse connections in a good way.
  • I know I don’t know, I keep an open mind. I observe what I think and which emotional layer is accompanying my thoughts. I don’t identify with my thoughts, but I keep my heart open and I look at what’s passing.
  • Care for your mind. It only tries to help, to give answers.
  • And be light, humerous, as this frees your obsessiveness and mental cramps.

In fact, I realized it is not without danger to make the moral statement that you should stop your thinking in our practical world. It’s good to get it into a more natural dynamic, to soften it, to make a lot of space, to breathe in your thinking. And it can have amazing effects when you do arrive at stopping your thinking. But at the same time it is the source of all of our accomplishments so far. We need it to get organized and creative. The most important thing is the quality of our thought.

Just trying all the time to “think positive”  or “stop it” won’t necessarily make it happen. If it works and you get relaxed the effect will probably be beneficial, but you can loose a lot of time trying in a way that doesn’t work for you.

What I most need is acceptance of what happens in my mind. I don’t necessarily accept a situation as it is, I accept the way I’m thinking about it.

I think  a lot of teachers don’t realize meditation and thinking works different for everyone. I think thinking misses clear thought.

Thanks to Marianne Williamson and her book ” a Return to Love” to inspire me for this post.

The universe is a riddle trying to solve itself through us.

Existential Research, Perception

In history humanity made a lot of images, stories and rules about the spiritual nature of our universe. Between those different representations floats a feeling of truth. But the true dynamics in this feeling are hard to discern. What is happening exactly?

To some, coincidence is the messenger of the universe. Synchronisity, law of attraction, prayer, opening your heart, asking the universe… What you send out you get back. What you really need God puts on your path.

But then I got confused. When is something coincidence and when isn’t it? How do you interpret what happens? According to a lot of people the Tsunami would be an act of God. We were asking for it. They were asking for it. I can get very angry at people saying such things.

I don’t believe in something as intolerant as the God image often created in religions. What is this God that makes all the most grave things happen? For a lot of people God doesn’t exist because of this reason, If he allows for the kinds of horror on earth, what a bastard would he be. Isn’t it he who allowed for evil to be? Can he not take responsibility and change it?

The church has been battling their politics of fear for a long time. Everything has an explanation in their world view. To some people suffering has a very good reason. It is because we would learn. Learn from our suffering. No.

I must say I don’t know. I feel coincidence often plays an important fact in people’s lives. I truly believe there is a intelligent dynamic in the coincidences you meet. But it can be confusing. When a friend of mine coincidentally met his ex-girlfriend in South-America for her that was a sign they needed to be together. For him it was a learning moment, he learned why they shouldn’t be together. I have no idea whom had the right mind about it. It could just be both to me.

What is the exact meaning of those images, how to interpret coïncidence? It seems to have a certain way of “encoding”, “handwriting”, “way of being written” with inside an answer to how to look at them. But I have been a hard learner in that area. Sometimes my mind panicked because I couldn’t understand.

A lot of religious leaders, gurus and teachers pretend to have very clear answers to these questions, where they explain why things happen as they happen. They have a clarity which seems correct.  Yet the teachers and their messages contradict each other. Almost all of them talk about getting rid of the ego, but what kind of ego is it that claims to hold the truth? “My clarity is bigger than yours”.

The difference between a clear and open view about what happens and the ego’s defenses against not knowing are often subtle.

What is this real face of God? Amongst all the self-help books, the enlightened and charlatans? What is the right nuance, what is the exactness of this synchronisity? I’d like to know.

There are some guiding principles which might help to find answers.

I explain different thinking dynamics which might bring us closer to the truth in the following posts: