The 3 Gates to the Illuminated Heart
From the teachings of the mystic heart
To enter the illuminated heart we need to exercise 3 fundamental fragrances: equanimity, meditation and self-inquiry. These qualities of the mind are pre-requisites to perceive what is real, to know where you are in the matrix of the heart and to establish oneself in truth, in freedom and in illumination. At this point in our journey I want to invite you to contemplate these practices. Learn to access where you are at or to know your location with sincerity and with no right or wrong. Remove the expectations and the judgments as you review these powerful tools that can facilitate energetic steadiness in you to be established in the illuminated heart.
When the mind has abandoned identifications with the dynamics of the little heart, equanimity arises. Equanimity is the acceptance of life as it is given, and knowing how to utilize every moment of existence as a means to evolve one’s consciousness.
When this is obtained in mind and body there is peace, contentment and balance. Equanimity is the contentment with oneself, with everybody else, with nature and with the cosmos.
Equanimity is a result of a certain concentration on the dynamics of going within. When we have applied techniques for the mind to go within, little by little we start to dwell in the stillness and silence of the illuminated heart. We are not taken away by the pulls of the outside world and we are not running after any desire to be better, to be right, to have, to be or to avoid any displacer.
A mind with equanimity is unshakable in front of adversities, persecution, recognition, honor and dishonor, cold and heat, pleasure or pain and greed and anger. When you are away from the dynamics of the little heart you understand the futility of that frequency and you can choose the wisdom of the illuminated heart.
Equanimity is the perfect balance between intellect and emotion, between the external and internal world. When we try to understand the magnitude of our existence with only our intellect of constantly processing our life through our emotions, there will be no equanimity. There is no equanimity when we are too preoccupied to make our living, to socialize and to be “out there”. Or when we are too much in reclusion, in introversion and meditation there is no equanimity.
Equanimity is the perfect balance of our nature with nature and its cycles. This balance is paradoxical; you are in action while inwardly remaining aware of the non-doer. In this state of balance you take great interest in developing and contributing with your passions and gifts, and yet remaining perfectly unattached.
Equanimity is a product of a certain effort and education of the mind. Our mind has been taken individually and collectively for a long period of time and unfortunately our modern education at home or in school doesn’t open the space for us to learn equanimity. It is the sincere commitment of the seeker to open a space to re-educate the mind and to bring awareness to our choices.
Equanimity of the mind is not possible without concentration, meditation and self-inquiry. Daily effort to these practices brings, little by little, purification of the tendencies of the little heart and the karmic heart.
A mind with equanimity is not hit by the opinion of others, by inner expectations about the future, about how to be and what to do. If we can give you an image of what equanimity looks like, it is an unmovable rock in the middle of the ocean. The waves and tides of the ocean can vary, but the rock remains the same weight and the same shape. The mind with equanimity has given up the imagination of making future plans and guessing what the results will be. It has abandoned hope, desires, greed and the restlessness that these faculties bring.
Equanimity arises when we constantly focus our attention in a relaxed way on what is true and in what is important, relevant and necessary for our self-freedom. A mind with equanimity is peaceful, the passions are quiet and contentment is ever present. This quiet aspect of the mind holds a brilliant intellect and the enfoldment of the illuminated heart.
Equanimity is to overcome duality or the forces of opposites. When we are free from attraction and repulsion equanimity arises and the illuminated heart gives it juices of peace, wisdom and power.
Walking Towards Equanimity
Equanimity does not arrive overnight to the monkey mind. However here are a few points of actions, attitudes and contemplation that can bring the mind into a state of equanimity.
Realize the fact that you are in front of thousands of years of conditioning where the little heart had been the one leading humankind. Your blood, genes and generation lineage have been influenced and developed under the spell of the dynamics of the little heart. When you are saturated with this misery and decide to apply certain techniques you need to be realistic that it will take some time. Also realize that with the teachings of a realized mind the time is shorter because your tendencies and shortcuts will be confronted and rectified.
2.-Tap into your fire.
Your fire is your sincere desire to get free, to do what it takes and to commit to this longing to be free. Without this you are only entertaining yourself to feel good, to avoid pain or to “be a good” person. There is nothing wrong with this; however, the longing for freedom is a juice of a different nature. The heart of the seeker longs for the illuminated heart to be the main source of knowing, guidance and being.
3.-Choose your values
Life can sustain you better when you set priorities in your life. If your priority is to have equanimity, then life will support your deepest longing. I am not saying the journey will be always pleasant, but surely you will be given the opportunities to defend and live your values. You will be tested and lessons will facilitate you to be clear about your priorities. Be sincere. If your values are to marry, have a family, or develop a career that’s where the majority of your soul energy will go. If your value is to pursue truth then the energy of the illuminated heart will go towards that. Now let’s clarify that one is not exclusive of the other. Balancing your values is part of equanimity. However prioritizing your values will bring a clear purpose to your mind.
Commitment is self-respect. It is your inner contract to excel and to unfold your potentials. It is a love affair that takes you to the depth of the illuminated heart. Equanimity does not accept an intense 3-weeks of practice and then you forget about it. Commit to a daily practice that is feasible for your particular lifestyle and sustain it in an undefined lapse of time. Seek no results and simply open the space to practice silence and deep observation of the non-dual mind. Breath and the heart kriya (these practices are available upon request at Bhuvaneswari teachings) are choices for you to practice commitment and to acquire equanimity.
5.-Accept what it is
The illuminated heart is all encompassing, all accepting and all supporting. You therefore need to practice these qualities without demanding etc. Don’t contort your personality or have an inferiority complex or negativity about you and others. Instead focus on praising yourself, qualifying your attributes and displaying them in areas where they are more needed.
6. Inner and outer harmony
Divide your time to feed the outer responsibilities and your inner longing. Our modern lifestyle puts emphasis on work and on making your living. A little empowerment is undone with playing and concentrating in mind faculties that are “non-productive”. We even feel guilty when we take time off from our chores and dedicate some time to meditate, to serve others or to display specific talents. Give yourself time to do nothing, to empower the space where the illuminate heart can speak and you can listen. Schedule holidays, retreats, trips and other activities that nourish your inner contact. Look to balance your inner and outer prosperity and to balance your introspection and extroversion.
7.-Select your words
Equanimity is expressed in your words. Controlling the speech is an exercise to educate the mind to be in a state of equanimity. The organ of speech is a restless sense and is a power that we misuse. We are not aware that the spoken word is a tool of the illuminated heart. It is vibration to form matter and to form our reality. It is through the vibrations of the sound that we enhance or destroy the possibility of the illuminated heart to be incarnated.
Four attributes need to be considered and combined as we speak:
- words must not be exciting
- word don’t cause pain
- words are truthful,
- words are pleasant and beneficial to you and others
Avoid impulse, emotional utterances and boisterous expressions. Think before you speak, refine your communication with periods of silence and realize that perfect delivery of your speech is the perfect vehicle for the equanimical mind. A good measure of speech will help you develop will power and remove anxieties.
Speak the truth at any cost, in a way that will not hurt other people’s feelings and avoid irony. Know that the power of each word uttered is affecting, constructing and educating your mind.
8.-Live life fully
Equanimity, or the establishment of peace of mind, arises when you have no unfinished business. Life gives you constant opportunities to evolve and thrive. Every situation that comes into your life is meant to change you and accelerate your evolution. In unpleasant situations do not blame God, do not say that God had cursed you. Pain purifies you. If you have an illness learn to live heartier. In poverty you will learn to manage energy and so on. Live life fully and witness its lessons. Participate as you are an important piece in the cosmic game of existence.
Participate in all events externally and inwardly maintaining an attitude of being the non-doer. Remember, there is not just one, but many levels of experience. In each level you are what you appear to be with real experiences, but when you transcend this level these experiences which balance or unbalance the mind are those with which the mind identifies with it, nothing more.
It is only when we lose the stance of witnessing that we get bound in the chambers of the karmic heart. Living our experiences in a witnessing state brings courage, boldness of expression and truly equanimity.
9.-Get out of the little heart- serve
Give in plenty, with humility and joy. Realize that when you give (serve) you are also enriching yourself. The principle of giving is the abundance of the illuminated heart. If there is anything that can describe the illuminated heart it will be the quality of torrential giving. Since you are, in essence, the illuminated heart, you are happier when you give, when you make yourself useful and when you give your qualities the opportunity to be exposed and to be of service. Realize that serving makes you richer. In promoting selflessness, your gifts bring prosperity because they will take you away from a self-centered and self-interested matrix of the little heart.
10.-Moderate your senses
Moderation of speech, food, sight, hearing and sensual gratification is equanimity. Take some time and notice which of the senses are troubling you the most and learn to use moderation. It may take some time but just the recognition of a certain abuse of the senses is a good start. Restraining activities and giving time to enjoy nature or “doing nothing” are part of being balanced.
Consider as well the moderation of activities you may take for granted such as sleep, work, exercise, meditation, talking and silence etc. Too much sleep makes you dull and lazy, too much work exhausts you and overeating cause drowsiness and overtaxes the internal organs. Too much talking disturbs the mind and causes exhaustion and if with too much working we cannot concentrate.
At the end you are the master, you know your limits, your temperament and the best-regulated practice to have peace, tenderness and a peaceful life.
11. Embrace faith
Be merciless in front of any doubts and have faith in the illuminated heart. Have faith that with your superstitions, weaknesses, wrong notions and ideas of impossibilities there is light and there is a divine wisdom that guides you, loves you and protects you. I have seen the heavens rejoice when people make steps towards their truth, their authentic expression and towards living within their own heart.
Faith is a monumental ingredient in acquiring equanimity. The voice of the little heart will have a pull, and that needs to be confronted. Reject those voices ruthlessly. Faith is that deep trust and knowing that we have been carried, encouraged and supported by the countless masters of the illuminated heart.
Once equanimity is established the mind is settled, the tantrums of the little heart are canalized and endurance is present to deal with the karmic heart. In equanimity we are receptive to subtle energies and we can deliver the glory of the illuminated heart in action, in flesh and in speech.
The second gate to the illuminated self is the spontaneous self-absorption in the cosmic truth. There is no effort in meditation, or visualization and affirmations. It is simply to allow oneself to be absorbed by the divine, by the nothingness of the illuminated heart.
You may not experience this deep absorption all at once, but with a steady daily practice of meditation combined with breath, service and equanimity you will surely expand into the mysteries of the self.
Meditation not only points you towards the connection with the illuminated heart, but also serves as a daily shower of your mind. It is a place where all is possible, where you are with all flavors of the mind and body. Let the most important part be steadiness, consistency and dedication. Choose a place and time where you can sit and meditate in the morning and in the evening for 20 minutes.
Meditation brings the mind inward and makes you steady and calm. In meditation the deep knowing of the illuminated heart becomes conscious, real and a point of reference where you can support expansion, connection and communication with receiving spontaneous revealing data.
To enjoy the bliss of the illuminated heart, the mind of the little heart needs to be transcended. Once the little heart and the karmic heart are not bound by any identification, they give space for existence to reveal itself. Inquiry is to concentrate on what is real. What I am? Where I am coming from? What I am doing here? These are examples of inquiry.
I have often found students confusing this important component of liberation with trying to give intellectual meaning to their life. Like questioning why I am doing this? Or what is the meaning of this event? These are not really questions that are pointing towards truth; instead, they point towards an ego based wish to know in order to be in control of and to add a certain sense to existence. Existence has no sense and the mind cannot grasp the order of existence. Therefore, it remains illogical and free from any sense.
The art of self-inquiry is learned with the interaction and presence of a teacher. It is based on correct discrimination. It is mastered by daily practice and is enriched by correct conversations such as satang’s.
By occupying the mind with an object/subject of inquiry you prevent the mind from being occupied by other forces. Inquiry is a protection when it becomes your passion, your obsession and your one pointed concentration. Through self-inquiry you become the center of the divine order, you understand the understandable and you are given the correct wisdom.
Inquiry ceases when you are established in your true presence. You are constantly knowing what you are so you don’t need to question any more. You are a source of the cosmic knowing, and you become the truth that you had inquired about.
The 3 gates of the illuminated heart: equanimity, meditation and self-inquiry need to be held with concentration, with relaxed contemplation and with sincere commitment. When you are friendly with these practices the clouds of incorrect perception dissipate and naturally the immensity of the illuminated heart displays its wisdom.