Leading from the heart heals all living things. . .

I was at a great 12 step meeting last night where the topic was “opening our hearts” to the travelers on our path, whoever they might be.  I am personally convinced that we could heal the wounds of the world if every one of us offered a “heart-felt” expression even once a day.  It wouldn’t be that difficult.  We could begin with the first person we see upon arising.  For many of us that would be a family member and how often do we walk right by them on our way to pouring that first cup of coffee without even acknowledging them with a kind “good morning.”  We could make it a practice of saying some thing loving the first time we speak every morning, whether to the person in our midst or during a phone call from a friend.  Or even with a stranger.

Taking this practice to the second person and then the third person we see will become easier.  Practice makes any exercise easier.  And this is, after all, an exercise of the mind.  Coupled, of course, with action. Nothing more.  But the results will be profound. This I can promise.  I have seen it at work in my own life.  I use to wait for others to pay me a kindness before I’d offer it.  And when it wasn’t forthcoming, I was certain I wasn’t worthy.  I was being ignored for a reason. I carried that sense of unworthiness with me for decades.

I’m not sure why I turned the tables on it.  I no longer remember what initiated my decision to try a different approach, but being the first to speak, to smile, to reach out a hand in kindness closed the gap I so often felt existed between me and all others.  How nice that the gap has been closed.  And now I close the gap every chance I get.  With friends and strangers too.

Every one needs the soft hand of acknowledgment.  Every one desires to be heard and appreciated, witnessed and valued.  In Al-Anon, our closing statement is about helping others and it says, “Let it begin with me.”  We can do this.  Every where.  In all circles.  In all locations.  With all people.  The world would change.  The universe would shift.  I’d like to do my part.  Would you?

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