When it comes to growing into our best selves, we humans do a lot of thinking. We think about what’s wrong with ourselves. We talk to ourselves about who we would rather be. We imagine, and plan, and try to figure it all out with our minds.
Now don’t get me wrong. The human mind is a wonderful instrument that has made remarkable achievements. But when it comes to our inner growth, the mind can only go so far. At some point we have to let go and allow something deeper — of a different nature than the mind — do the work for us.
Only the (spiritual) heart, that everlasting loving intelligence that “beats the drum” inside each of us, call it what you will, can bridge the gap between the timeless wisdom above us and always surrounding us, and our present level of being.
OneJourney founder Guy Finley tells us, “You can’t do with the mind what must be done with the spirit.” And this same message has been given to us over and over again, across the ages…
Knowledge puffs up; it is only love that builds up.
— New Testament (57 A.D.)
The first step to self-knowledge is self-distrust. Nor can we attain to any kind of knowledge, except by a like process.
— Diogenes (415)
Glory be to God who has not given to his creatures any way to attain knowledge of him except by means of their helplessness and their hopelessness of ever reaching such attainment.
— Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (633)
Man does not know himself and does not know how to use the energies hidden in him, nor does he know that he carries the stars hidden in himself and that he is the microcosm, and thus carries within him the whole firmament with all its influence.
— Paracelsus (1493)
How can he remember well his ignorance, which his growth requires, who has so often to use his knowledge?
— Henry David Thoreau (1817)
Awakening begins when a man realizes that he is going nowhere and does not know where to go.
— P. D. Ouspensky (1878)
Have you noticed that the more we think about our problems, and the more we try to imagine and coax ourselves into another way of living, the more our discontentment with life persists? It’s because we’re going about it the wrong way.
But we can do the unthinkable. We can begin to stop listening to the noisy mind that gives us “solutions” that only keep our problems going. Instead we can deliberately go silent, and in that silence begin to “hear” the wisdom of the heart.
The Secret of Silencing Your Noisy Mind
The key to connecting to our heart is to stop listening to the racket inside our heads.
OneJourney founder Guy Finley has often written about how we can quiet our minds so that we can get in touch with our hearts. He is giving you a simple step-by-step procedure for an inner practice that can set you on your inner journey:
The only reason your mind won’t stop its endless chattering… is because you won’t stop listening to it! You must learn to detect, stop, and drop inner ‘voices.’ The best time to practice going quiet — to detect and drop dark inner voices — is when the world around you is more or less already in a natural state of silence. So, early morning, upon arising, and just before you go to sleep, are the most likely times to yield the best results.
— Guy Finley (1949)
Do you have a quote from your own tradition that speaks of the proper roles of the mind vs. the heart? Please click here to submit it to the OneJourney Living Book so we can all be encouraged in our work to align ourselves with higher understanding.
Dr. Ellen Dickstein
The OneJourney Project