Create the Life You Imagine ~ March 2019

Entering the Heart Center

“Our real journey in life is interior. It is a matter of growth, of deepening, of an ever greater surrender to the creative action of love and grace in our hearts”

~ Thomas Merton

When we begin to regularly connect with the fourth chakra energy of our heart center, we hit an important developmental stage in the evolution of our awareness and consciousness, and we open the capacity to make monumental leaps forward in realizing the higher possibilities of our lives. Before we move up to explore our upper triangle power centers, however, let’s review how the first four power centers impact the development of our consciousness and our capacity to move through our lives with expanded awareness and a greater sense of joy and presence.

Remember that the lower triangle is your “personality” self. It is home to your physical body (first chakra), your emotional body (second chakra) and your mental body (third chakra). As we worked through these centers over the last several weeks we explored the powers and vulnerabilities of each of these centers and we recognized that moving through these centers is a developmental process. The first three power centers open and develop in observable and overlapping stages. The first chakra opens from ages 0-5 as our life experiences allow us to make sense of our physical body and the workings of the physical world. The second chakra becomes active from about ages 2-13 as we explore our emotional body through our relationships with other people. The third chakra wakes up from about ages 9-25 as we begin to use our mental body to think, analyze, plan and make decisions with increasing independence. As we navigate through these stages we work through these formative life questions: Am I safe and protected? Am I loved, respected and cared for? Am I smart, competent and capable? You might recognize the alignment of these stages with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs: Physical and Safety Needs; Belonging and Love Needs; and Competency and Esteem Needs.

During these critical life stages we answer these formative life questions based on the experiences we have in life. We record these experiences in our chakra centers and we begin to form life narratives that reflect these early life experiences and that drive our reactions and responses to new life experiences. Positive early life experiences allow us to move through these life stages with relative ease, and you can imagine that these chakra centers stay relatively clear and open. More challenging life experiences create stress, pain and trauma, and you can imagine that these difficult experiences get stored like hardened energy into rocks or even boulders in these centers that clutter up our energy system and make it difficult to engage in new experiences without bumping into and activating the old stories.

The more cluttered up our lower triangle is with difficult life experiences, the more energy it takes to navigate life and to protect and defend our personality self from real or perceived threats, and the less energy we have to continue to grow and evolve into higher states of consciousness and awareness. It is like we are constantly getting tripped up by the rocks and boulders of past experiences and we use up most of our precious life energy managing the stress, anxiety and reactivity of the lower triangle. We get into predictable patterns of reactivity that we repeat again and again and again, making it difficult or impossible to activate the higher operating system of our Soul Self and stopping us from remembering and expressing the truth of who we really are.

As we think about the developmental evolution of our consciousness, during the earliest chapters of life I define our awareness as operating at the “Pre-Me” level. At this level of awareness, a child doesn’t have an organized sense of self and is really just a stream of physical and emotional reactions to the events of life. Physically they are wet, dry, hot, cold, hungry, thirsty, tired, and so on. Emotionally they are happy, sad, excited, scared, mad or glad, depending on the experience they are having from moment to moment. At the Pre-Me stage children depend on others for their care and support, just as we would place a preemie baby in a neonatal intensive care unit to be monitored and cared for by trained professionals.

As our third chakra awareness begins to kick in, we start to develop a more conscious sense of self as our mental body starts to sort, organize and direct our thoughts, feelings and actions. I define this as the “Me” level of consciousness, and this is the small self voice we have described that focuses on the outer world and on managing life from the survival perspective of the lower triangle. The Me self keeps very busy monitoring the physical, emotional and mental reactions registering in our chakra centers and trying to keep it all together. However, as we have all experienced, sometimes the Me self reactivity creates lots of stress and s