“Members of ancient and indigenous cultures when asked where in their bodies they live, they gesture to the region of the chest. Members of our culture, on the other hand, point to the head. For those locating themselves in the heart and those locating themselves in the brain experience the world in quite different ways. Realms of experience, open to those who approach the world through the heart, are simply not perceivable to those who experience it through the brain.
One of the most important recognitions emerging through recent studies of the heart is that our individual organs, as well as the entire human organism itself, are not linear expressions, but are highly complex nonlinear organisms in which the whole is far more than the sum of its parts.
The heart contains what are called pacemaker cells, which synchronize with each other to set a regular rhythm. Individual pacemaker cells are tightly coupled by the millions in the heart. The electromagnetic field they produce together is 5,000 times stronger than the brain’s EM field and can be measured by the most sensitive instruments up to ten feet from the body, and continues out indefinitely into space. It is strongest, however, within about 12-18 inches of body – you can sense this when you get too close to somebody and you experience them as being “in your space” – this the experience of your two heart fields touching.
Our heart cells entrain not only with each other, but the heart and its field can entrain with any other EM field it encounters. At that moment of entrainment, when the two fields begin oscillating in unison, there is a extremely rapid exchange of information. As the information from each heart field is taken in by the other, heart function alters, hormonal cascades change, and alterations in physiology occur. In essence, a kind of dialogue occurs.
This dialogue is extremely natural to us because it is one of our earliest experiences of life. In our mother’s wombs we are immersed in the field of the mother’s heart. The mother’s field is filled with information: how she feels about the infant, whether it is loved or not, wanted or not. We are always sensitive to EM fields after birth for we gestate in the midst of this kind of language. After birth, the heart routinely scans encountered EM field for information and these interactions are how we experience and respond to our environment. We experience these fields in a unique way: as emotions.
Just as ROYGBV make up the color spectrum we can see, and the 5 basic tastes combine to make up all the tastes we taste, basic feelings of mad, sad, glad, and scared, combine to make up all the feelings we experience. The particular spectrum of EM energy that the heart takes in is not experienced as colors or sounds, but as emotions. The slightest change in heart function creates new feeling complexes while the slightest change in emotional state creates new heart rhythms. Both immediately show up in EKG readings.
The heart is, in fact, an extremely sensitive sensory organ whose domain is feeling. The nuances of emotion that it is possible to experience from encountered EM fields are as diverse as the range of colors or tastes we experience. Unfortunately, this finely tuned emotional perception of the world atrophies in those of us who habituate consciousness to the brain.
****One of the simplest ways to initiate thinking with the heart, and to begin to reclaim this kind of sensing, is to look at something that is in front of you, a plant perhaps, and ask yourself, “How does it feel?” You will then experience a unique feeling complex, generally not nameable, as the EM signature of the object moves through your heart.****
The ancient Greeks called this heart exchange with other living organisms aisthesis. It literally means “to breathe in.” The Greeks recognized that this moment of entrainment between two organisms was accomplished by a gasp or deep inspiration as the impact of the meanings coming in were felt. They considered it an exchange of soul essence, when the thing that is more than the sum of its parts, that thing that is our soul, was touched by the soul in something outside the self.
All living organisms possess extremely complex electromagnetic fields. Each field encodes everything about the organism that produces it, its state of health, history, potentials, and much more. For example, every chemical that a plant makes can be identified by its own unique electromagnetic signature. And most plants make hundreds of thousands of different chemicals each and every day. Developing sophistication with heart perception does in fact make it possible to accurately determine the medicinal actions of a plant by directly encountering the plant’s EM field. Once we allow the EM field to pass through the heart, it is routed to the brain for analysis where the meanings in the EM signature are extracted.
Thus indigenous peoples could say, in all accuracy, that they were taught by the plants themselves, or that their knowledge came in visions or dreams. The natural empathy that such a close connection engenders also causes people to treat the world very differently than they do when they are alienated from nature. Although explanations of this process of direct perception help us understand the process, what is most important is the experience of it – how it feels, how it enriches our lives, and how it reconnects us to the ground of being from which we have come. It is very hard to cut down a forest when we experience it as alive and intelligent and as an elder to the human.
This heart-centered way of perception is the oldest we know, intimately bound up in our humanness and our expression as ecological extensions of this Earth. Reductionist and monotheistic approaches can be likened to concrete sidewalks – they suppress the wild, but the power of the green – veriditas - will always break through the sidewalks, both those outside of us, and those within us.”
Inspired, borrowed, and rewritten from Stephen Buhner’s Sacred Plant Medicine. I highly recommend this incredible book and hope to share more as I continue reading it. Thank you with all my heart Stephen.