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The Soundless Center
Silence of the Heart

It takes a sensitive ear to tune in to

the silence of the heart,

it can offer us profound experiences if we listen.


We spend a lot of time attempting

to put the feelings in our hearts into words,

to communicate to others our passions,

our emotions, and our love.


Often we are so busy

trying to translate our heart’s roar

into language

that we miss the most profound experience

the heart has to offer,

which is silence.


Every poem arises

from this silence

and returns to it.


When all the songs have been sung,

the soliloquies delivered,

the emotions expressed,

silence is what remains.


As each wave of feeling

rises and falls back into the silence,

we have an opportunity

to connect with the vast, open,

powerfully healing wisdom

at the soundless center of our hearts.


Our hearts may seem noisy

and tumultuous

so much of the time

that we do not even associate them

with silence.


It takes a sensitive ear

to tune in to the silence of the heart,

but it is there in each one of us,

so close and so large

that we do not even notice it.


We can begin to become aware of it

in the same way we become aware

of the negative space in a still life,

the background of a photograph,

or the open sky

that contains the sun, clouds,

moon, and stars.


We are accustomed to tuning in to

objects and sounds

that are one-pointed,

solid, and three-dimensional.


Seeing and hearing

the apparently empty space

that contains these sounds and objects

takes a little practice.


We can bring our awareness

into our hearts

by simply breathing

into the general area of our heart.


The first thing we may notice…

is feelings like joy or sadness

and physical sensations…

like tightness or tenderness.


We acknowledge these

as we continue to breathe and focus,

listening attentively.


We surround these feelings and sensations

with breath and recognize

that they are contained and held

in an immeasurable substance

like water or air,

intangible, ineffable,

but utterly real.


This is the silence of the heart,

and the more we listen for it,

return to it,

and accept it,

the more we bathe and purify ourselves

in the soundless center

of our being.


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~Drunk on Love


Drunk on Love


Be drunk on love,

because love is all that exists;


Without love, no one has the right to enter His house.


They ask, “What is love?”

Reply: “Giving up your self-will.”


He who hasn’t given up his will isn’t chosen.


The lover’s an emperor, the two worlds are at his feet:


Does an emperor notice what is thrown in his path?


It is Love and the Lover that live eternally –


Don’t lend your heart to anything else; all else is borrowed.


How long will you go on and on embracing a corpse?


Embrace the soul that is embraced by nothing else.


– Jalal-ud-Din Rumi
(Translated by Andrew Harvey)

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Wholeheartedness is a precious gift,

but no one can actually give it to you.


You have to find the path that has heart

and then walk it impeccably….


It’s like someone laughing in your ear,

challenging you to figure out what to do

when you don’t know what to do.


It humbles you.

It opens your heart.


Pema Chödrön
The Wisdom of No Escape

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~Be Awake Always

Be Awake Always

There are many whose eyes are awake


And whose hearts are asleep;


Yet, what can be seen


By mere creatures of water and clay?



But he who keeps his heart awake


Will know and live this mystery:


While the eyes of his head may sleep


His heart will open hundreds of eyes.



If your heart isn’t yet illumined


Be awake always, be a seeker of the heart,


Be at war continually with your carnal soul.



But if your heart is already awakened,


Sleep peacefully, sleep in the arms of Love,


For your spiritual eye is not absent


From the seven heavens and seven directions.

– Jalal-ud-Din Rumi
(Translated by Andrew Harvey)

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~Always in His Service

Always in His Service

I said to my heart,

“How, my heart,
Can you be so crazy
As to swerve from the service
Of the One you bless?”

My heart replied,

“It is you who are mad
To see me wrongly –
I am always in His service,


It is you that stray.”

~ Jalal-ud-Din Rumi

(Translated by Andrew Harvey)

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~A Window

A Window

There is a window between

heart and Heart:

they are never separate

like two bodies.



Two lamps may not be united in their form –

But their light merges into each other.


No lover ever searched for Union

If his beloved is not also seeking him.


The love of lovers makes them think;

The Beloved’s Love

makes them full and shining.


~Jalal-ud-Din Rumi

(Translated by Andrew Harvey)

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Sunsetdock6

A person will worship something,

have no doubt about that.


We may think our tribute is paid in secret

in the dark recesses of our heart,

…but it will out.


That which dominates our imagination

and our thoughts will determine our lives,

and our character.


Therefore, it behooves us to be careful what we worship,

for what we are worshiping

we are becoming.


~Ralph Waldo Emerson~

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