Cultivating the Garden of the Heart: Choosing Seeds of Compassion and LoveMay 29, 2023
Do you ever feel like your emotions are similar to riding a rollercoaster after your pregnancy or infant loss?
Your triggers become unexpected twists and turns. Well intentioned comments create a surge of anger or hurt. The sadness and pain creates a sensation in your belly as if the ride was plunging downward. And in the middle of the ride, you feel like it will never end. Grief is a non-linear journey just like a rollercoaster.
In the vast realm of human emotions, the heart serves as a sacred space where profound experiences take root and flourish. Jack Kornfield, a renowned meditation teacher and author, beautifully captures the essence of the heart's potential with his quote: "The heart is like a garden: it can grow compassion or fear, resentment or love. What seeds will you plant there?"
This thought-provoking statement invites us to reflect on the choices we can make as we navigate through our grief. Just as a gardener carefully selects and nurtures the seeds they sow, we have the power to cultivate an inner sanctuary of love, compassion, and harmony towards ourselves. All of this takes, time, active processing of difficult emotions, and support from others like our therapist, family, or community.
Some of the seeds you can chose for yourself include:
Mindfulness: Planting the seed of mindfulness helps us stay present and aware of our thoughts, emotions, and actions. It allows us to respond to life's challenges with clarity and equanimity.
Kindness: Cultivating kindness allows us to extend compassion to ourselves and others. Small acts of kindness can transform our relationships and the world we inhabit.
Forgiveness: Planting seeds of forgiveness enables us to release grudges and resentments, liberating ourselves from the burden of the past and fostering inner peace.
Gratitude: Practicing gratitude allows us to nurture an appreciation for life's blessings even in the midst of loss. By focusing on what we have rather than what we lack, we cultivate a sense of abundance and contentment.
Compassion: By sowing seeds of compassion, we cultivate empathy and understanding for ourselves and others. Compassion helps us build bridges, heal wounds, and create a more harmonious world.
In Episode 31 of the Pause to Remember Podcast, take five minutes to plant some seeds of self-compassion and love by listening to the meditation. Then, see how you feel.
Meditation is one way to smooth the rollercoaster ride of our grief. It is also a way to plant and tend to the seeds of our life regardless of the place we find ourselves. It helps to create self-awareness, reflection, and a commitment to your well-being as you work through your grief.
The wisdom encapsulated in Jack Kornfield's quote reminds us of the incredible power we hold within our hearts even when we are missing our baby, struggling to understand our loss, or working through fertility issues. We have the capacity to shape the quality of our lives by choosing the seeds we plant there.
If you would like to meditate and practice yoga in a more structured format, you are invited to join a four-week mindfulness based grief course called a MNDFL Rx. Learn more here.
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