“Tend Her Heart” graphite on paper…from my sketch pad (future mural)
The heart is more than a shape, it shapes… During this extended time of settling and setting, staying over going, and remaining in place rather that going out of place, many have risen to a new level of presence; tapped into a heart space that had been crowded out by too much doing and not enough being. With churches, temples, synagogues, mosques, and ounfos closed, what has been the nature of your worship. Beyond program, ritual, preaching, and singing, how have you tended your heart space? This morning I asked a small group of people, “What feeds your heart?” Sadly, none could answer. I quickly shifted the weight and asked they they allow themselves to think on it in their own space and time. Mine was not to ask in order to task but tend toward tenderness. Notice how we attend to everything else at the neglecting expense of our living center. There is no wonder that imbalance is in abundance. A heart has never attacked anyone, they seize and shut down because we neglect to truly tend them. We show more care to static edifices of brick, wood, plaster, mortar, and glass.
“Because our heart dwells in unattended dark, we often forget its sublime sensitivity to everything that is happening to us. Without our ever noticing, the heart absorbs the joys of things and also their pain and care. Within us, therefore, a burdening can accrue. For this reason, it is wise now and again to tune in to your heart and listen for what it carries. Sometimes the simplest things effect unexpected transformation. The old people here used to say that a burden shared is a burden halved. Similarly, when you allow your heart to speak, the burdens it carries diminish, a new lightness enters the body, and relief floods the heart…the state of one’s heart inevitable shapes one’s life; it is ultimately the place where everything is decided….because it is where God dwells: the heart is the divine sanctuary.” +John O’Donohue, This Space Between Us.