Thinking Makes the Heart Sore

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A neighbor couple threw the I Ching on New Year’s Day. Here is what they read:

The heart-mind thinks constantly.

This cannot be changed,

but the movements of the heart-mind–

that is, a person’s thoughts–

should restrict themselves to the immediate situation.

All thinking that goes beyond that only makes the heart sore.

Confining our thoughts to the present moment is no easy task. We don’t begin by trying to stop our thoughts. Instead, begin by noticing thoughts and labeling them into past and future.

Notice that a thought of the past is just a thought.

Notice that a thought of the future is just an idea we have. And then we believe it.

A thought of the past is happening in the present moment.

A thought of the future is happening in the present moment.

How sneaky is that!

One social activist friend swears she hasn’t slept since the 2016 election. She finally went to the doctor for sleeping pills. Thinking makes the heart sore.

As counter-intuitive as it seems, practice (and it is a practice!) confining thoughts to the present moment. Peace lives in the present moment. Calm lives in the present moment. A happy heart lives in the present moment.

Another friend who has cancer gave me a refrigerator magnet that says

Worry is a misuse of imagination.

Worry makes the heart sore.

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Hatred makes the heart sore. Ill-will makes the heart sore. Desire makes the heart sore.

Live your life now. In the only now you have.

 

 

 

This entry was posted in DHARMA REFLECTIONS on by .

About cherylwilfong

Cheryl Wilfong teaches mindfulness meditation at Vermont Insight Meditation Center when she isn’t rearranging one of her 28 flower beds or tending her out-of-control vegetable garden. Master Gardener and mistress of metaphor, she delivers the Dharma into daily life in the garden.

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