What is the Heart?Earlier I said that our Heart or Soul is our true, pure consciousness or Self, a wave on the ocean of Godís consciousness, one with and inseparable from God. The word heart can also refer to the love, compassion, tenderness, joy, kindness, caring, truth, wisdom, and light that emanates from our Soul into our lives and the world. Iíll use the analogy of a candle flame to illustrate this idea. In this analogy, the flame is the soul, and the light and heat radiating from the flame are the qualities of the heart. Just as the light and heat are a part of, and inseparable from the fire its self, these qualities manifesting from the Soul, are a part of, and very intimately one with our Soul.
This concept can also help us understand our relationship with God. Yogananda says, ďYou are Godís love and joy its selfĒ. Thatís how close God is to you, and how close you are to God. Your very existence is Godís blessed loving presence, love, joy, truth, light, peace and goodness. God is the source, substance and only reality of your being.
Something else that Yoganandaji said that I think is absolutely amazing, and fills my heart with love and gratitude every time I think of it: "God knows the human heart and what it is to be human, because it is He who has become human." This quote is not only another illustration of our oneness with God, his nearness to us, and how intimate our relationship is with God. But it also allows us to comprehend, and even feel the tenderness, compassion, love and joy that is the very fabric, the essence of our being.
Youíre not a human being having a spiritual experience; youíre a spiritual being having a human experience
The candle analogy can also be used to illustrate the relationship between our deeper consciousness, the Soul, and the other levels, or layers, of our consciousness and being, such as the mind, feelings and even the body. Remember the Tantra philosophy that all existence is a manifestation of God, the Universal Consciousness. In the candle analogy the flame is the Soul. Our conscious awareness, mind, feelings, body, and all aspects and levels of our being are like the heat and light radiating from the candle. The light and heat are a manifestation of, a part of and inseparable from the fire its self. Likewise, all of the levels of our being are a manifestation, or an unfolding of the Soul, and the Soul is a manifestation or wave on the Ocean of Godís infinite and eternal Consciousness. So in essence, the whole of our beings and lives are a manifestation, an expression, an unfolding of God.
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