Listening with the heart

Healing yourself, loving the world

The Enneagram, like other spiritual systems, teaches us about the triad of heart, body, and mind.  As we are grounded in our bodies, we can open our hearts, and then listen with a clear mind.

Like many people raised in our western culture, I have tended to value my intellect first and ignored the body and heart centers. However, with no grounding in the body or heart, I can get out of balance. (Imagine a top-heavy scaffolding toppling to the ground under its own weight.)

After a recent, delightful conversation with Sunday Coté, a gifted and beautiful friend and Center of Spiritual Living minister, I’ve been experimenting with listening for the emotion before I hear the words.  The results have been both revealing and humbling.

Listening with the heart

In daily conversations, I can easily get put off if someone’s words seem controlling or opinionated or fear based or restrictive. (I’m an Aries – a bit quick to react!). But after Sunday shared with me about this communication possibility, I’ve been experimenting with feeling the emotion first before hearing the words.

Rather than react to the words, I notice how the person is feeling. Even if I hear the words as controlling, or personally directed at my ego, I can notice in the heart space a tenderness, a care, a hurt, a vulnerability. It’s been a fascinating experiment and I feel closer to each person as a result. I also feel a bit humbled at how much I’ve been missing.  

Being yourself

For those of you who study Human Design, I have an open g and solar plexus and a very defined ajna-throat. It’s taken years of deconditioning to get to this place.  I’m also starting on the Gene Keys Venus Sequence and the 22nd Gene Key plays a striking role in loosening this tension and moving to a place of respect.  As Richard Rudd says in his 22nd Gene Keys video:  

The more you pause and listen, the more grateful and gracious your spirit becomes.

Hear more

If you are interested, I have a series of tapping podcasts. Check out the connection category.

Photo by Cristina Gottardi

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Deborah Donndelinger

Deborah Donndelinger

I'm writing from Maryland, but my heart goes out all over the world. I'm cheering you on as you tackle the hard stuff, embrace the easy, and show up to help others.