Educating the Heart

When I was living in Dharmasala, India for a few months, I had the honour of studying with His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama for several weeks. The Dalai Lama held daily teachings in his monastery and temple for the local Tibetans, and it was also open to foreigners. Luckily we met a few avid western students who provided translations for us because the teachings were given in Tibetan. The temple and monastery exuded divinity and radiance as the local Tibetans prostrated or mindfully stepped around the monastery over and over conducting their daily japa practices. One of Dalai Lama's teachings still rings true in my ears and heart:

" Educating the heart is like personal brushing your teeth. It must be done every day. Educating the heart requires a training of the mind. The expression of compassion and creativity are two primary forms of a healthy brain and lead to an open heart. Both require practice. Compassion requires an objective attitude. Creativity requires imagination. Practicing different mindsets is the best brain hygiene. One significant mindset to perform is the spectrum between a Hero (will, determination, fire) to a Child (innocence, playfulness, water). Use objectivity and your imagination to be a Hero and a Child over and over again".

These teachings have invited me to dive into a place beyond social constructions and stifling judgements from others.... to a place far from feeling embarrassed or a space where I am innocent and vulnerable. I try to imagine my favorite experiences as a child - when I felt wild and safe. I also spend time visualizing the times when my commitment and inner fire led my intentions into fruition. Close your eyes and journey to these places...what do you see? what do you hear? what do you feel? Allow the compassion and creativity to traverse you back & forth from head to heart.



Wade Davis has always been one of my favorite authors. Often his books were part of formal discussions within my educational trajectory (i.e., Serpent and the Rainbow; Art of Shamanic Healing; Wayfinders; Light at the Edge of the World). When I met my husband, we immediately had a connection over Wade Davis. Wade Davis opened many windows into deep and intimate conversations for both of us. These windows lead us into different worlds of magic and creativity...of spirit and meaning - into a Wonderland. In his book Wayfinders Wade Davis explains how half of the languages taught on this planet are on the brink of extinction and how detrimental that is to our well-being, on individual and societal levels. Below are words from this brilliant being in the Wayfinders:

"Language is like a flash of human spirit, a vehicle by which the soul of each culture comes into the material world. Every language is an old growth forest of the mind, a water shed of thought, an ecosystem of spiritual possibilities".

These words place me in a deep abundant forest of richness. These words remind me to be receptive to our inner languages. I invite each of us to communicate with our inner worlds of languages. If we tune out certain languages within our vehicles (i.e., bodies), we are missing out on spiritual possibiities or walking past the open windows to our soul.

In your practice today, soften your edges and attune your ears and LISTEN. Embrace a playfulness in your meditation or yoga. Be open. Have no agenda. Co-Create the journey into your inner wonderland by jumping through the open windows that are presented to you by the vast number of languages living within you. Honour the languages that live within you by opening the eyes of each pore of your skin. The languages are buried in the various layers and fabrics of your being. Therefore, allow every inch of you to melt like butter so the communication can surface. Importantly, ignite your inner fire in order to remain attentive. There is a deep level of commitment required to sustain a level of awareness that will lead you into the deep abundant forest of richness.