East Bay Edition

A Kinder Heart

Cultivating a Life of Compassion

Andrea Danti/Shutterstock.com

The path to mentally transcending the world’s intrusive bustle is to be compassionate with our self and others. It begins in a relaxed heart from which emanate daily thoughts, words and deeds. Here’s a helpful centering exercise.

Sit or lie in a quiet spot for about 10 minutes with eyes closed and become aware of breaths moving in and out, then feel each one fully by filling the lungs from bottom to top. With each exhale, slowly and completely empty the lungs. On each inhale, refill the lungs again. Mentally reciting “optimum oxygen” three times helps the body deeply absorb the nourishing element.

Then bring both hands to the center of the chest to connect with the emotional heart centered there. Feel it pulsing beneath palms and fingers while quietly saying aloud, “I relax my heart.” Let the shoulders release coiled tension and drop gently. Repeat saying, “I relax my heart” and sense the heart fluttering open a bit more. Rest in this feeling.

Again say, “I relax my heart” and notice awareness drop into it, a feeling of being present in the heart. Feel all tension and holding-on melting down and out onto the floor.

Then fill the lungs deeply and release the air through puckered lips; blow out with strength and purpose. Continue for a minute or two, allowing each exhalation to come straight from the center of the chest. When it feels complete, the feeling of active release will subside.

Sense how much lighter the heart feels. Further relax the heart and shoulders, letting go into the ocean of love native to our heart. Envision floating safely in this ocean. See it stretched into infinity. Feel its warm embrace.

Now choose kindness in this moment. Relax into kindness without judgment or pressure, only loving acceptance. Accept the infinite ocean of love available and open to it. It is filled with compassion, and now so are you.

Rest gently for a few minutes, until once again aware of everyday surroundings. Rub hands over both arms, legs, hands and feet to feel present in the room. Then go about a heart-centered day with the waves of the infinite ocean of love gently lapping there.


Amy Leigh Mercree, of Naples, FL, author of The Compassion Revolution, is a medical intuitive and relationship and wellness coach. Learn more at AmyLeighMercree.com.


This article appears in the August 2018 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Green Surfing

Ecosia, a German Internet search engine, has planted more than 52 million trees in the last 10 years by diverting its advertising revenue to funding new trees worldwide.

Aqua Breakthrough

Chinese scientists have used ultraviolet light and graphitic carbon nitride to purify two and a half gallons of water in one hour.

Far Out

The outermost region of the Earth’s atmosphere has been newly determined to reach out much farther than the moon.

Baby Balking

The U.S. birthrate has been falling steadily, partly because prospective parents are worried about the increased frequency and intensity of storm, drought and wildfires, as well as about growing geopolitical unrest and resource scarcity.

Revamping Recycling

China, a major importer of recycled waste, is rejecting shipments contaminated by greasy pizza boxes, polyethylene-lined disposable coffee cups, and plastics like yogurt cups and butter tubs.

Add your comment: