Core Strategies For Spiritual Development: Open the Mind AND the Heart

Just A Rock in the Woods

Just A Rock in the Woods


April 30, 2016 1:17 PM

I’ve been working diligently on the book, so there hasn’t been much to say. Every morning I’ve been heading into town to write, then I’ll head back into the woods for a quiet afternoon and a peaceful camp to sleep in. While I’ve probably made camp in at least a dozen different sites since I’ve been here, I have two favorites that I frequent the most—one about eight miles southwest of town, and one about eight miles northwest. With the van, there’s no problem finding a site, and often I won’t know where I’m going to camp until I’m driving out of town.

Here’s an excerpt I wrote for the book the other day. From the chapter The Basics, subchapter Core Strategies. Standard first draft disclaimer…

The Mind AND The Heart

Most of us are drawn to either the path of the Mind or the path of the Heart—we are more comfortable with one or the other. Those who favor thoughts and logic will be drawn to the path of the Mind (the right-side of the diagram above), and those who favor love and emotions will be drawn to the path of the Heart (the left-side of the diagram).

Being drawn to what resonates with you is perfectly normal and natural… and pursuing only the path which resonates with you will stunt your spiritual growth and bring your development to a screeching halt.

The primary lesson of the Shadow Aspect is that if we don’t examine our repressed memories, those memories will unconsciously influence our lives in profoundly negative ways. A similar situation arises when we restrict our spiritual development only to the Aspects that “resonate” with us: we grow stronger in the one path, while remaining weak in the other. As a result, the rational spiritual seeker (strong in the Mind) will feel more isolated and distant than they already feel, and the emotional spiritual seeker (strong in the Heart) will feel more insecure and uncertain than they already do.

When we realize that we are feeling worse by focusing solely on the “resonant” Aspects, the solution becomes obvious: Even out our development by working on the Aspects on the other side of the diagram. At first, this will feel terribly uncomfortable, but soon you’ll see progress and your spiritual practice will take on a balanced feel.

For the rational man who has to understand and explain everything, his heart will soon open and love—maybe for the first time in his life—will flow forth. For the woman who is most comfortable when she feels the “rightness” of things, her mind will naturally calm and—maybe for the first time in her life—she’ll exude confidence and inner peace.

The Truth is neither Light nor Dark, neither Mind nor Heart, but a union of the extremes. To focus on only one side, is to neglect the other. In spiritual development, balance is everything. A balanced approach of Mind and Heart is the only form of spirituality which etches itself into our being—it is the only type of spirituality which lasts.

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2 thoughts on “Core Strategies For Spiritual Development: Open the Mind AND the Heart

  1. Dear Wayne, of course as you say the beauty of synchronicity is always here.
    This week after a long troubled ingestion of our political scene,I realized I a
    Have had a rude awakening.
    Always being in the heart and shying away from logic, I believed in the fact that mankind always did the right thing.
    So what I am seeing has not matched my beliefs and it has been very painful.
    At the same time I have been told to use the sword of my intelligence to sort things out.
    At first I balked at” the mind”. Now, as I read your post it is so dead on to my next level of growth.
    I am looking forward to talking with you when you’re done with your book.
    Your posts are my daily friendship with the gentle whispering ( and sometimes not so gentle) of soul, spirit,grace. That’s my name for Her, Grace.
    Many thanks

    • Beautifully put Brenda. Thank-you. Many women are Heart over Mind, and many men are the opposite—Mind over Heart (I certainly am). But I am so grateful—everyday—that I have found and opened the Heart. I’m sure you’ll have a similar reaction. 🙂

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