Death of the Heart

“Where there is no memory, there has been death of the heart”
-R. Nachman
I often sit with someone and they tell me that they do not remember much from their younger years. That despite having had a “good childhood”, the particular memories remain elusive. It appears that the beautiful person in front of me has had to turn off his heart. Emotionally lonely and unseen, the heart goes into hiding. It is too painful to remain open. When this happens, the world becomes more dull, more gray.
And the heart still hopes. Those longings often come out sideways: Blame, pleasure seeking and people pleasing are some of the ways the heart’s signals are sent out “sideways”. The heart cannot send a clear signal from exile, it’s too risky.
Trust that underneath the anger and blame there is sadness, behind the pleasure seeking is a longing for love and connection, and hidden in the people pleasing a fear of loneliness and rejection. Trust that the heart is close and that a willingness to feel the pain, fear and longing will lead you directly into its warm embrace.
In that embrace you will create new memories, some joyous and some painful, all of them very alive. That experience is waiting for you, right now.
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