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What Is a Heart Meditation?

By Cynde Gregory
Updated May 17, 2024
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Practitioners and medical researchers alike know that meditation is good for the body. Meditation reduces blood pressure, calms anxieties, and teaches the mind to focus. It is said that heart meditation isn’t only good for the person doing the meditation, but it sends waves of profound acceptance and love out into the world. Heart meditation, or heart chakra meditation, focuses and develops energy that brims with compassion and heightens the ability to not only feel love for others but for oneself.

The heart chakra is the fourth of seven chakras. According to believers, chakras are spinning spirals of energy. The seven chakras are located along the human body, beginning with the root chakra at the base of the spine, with the slowest rotation of energy, and ending with the crown chakra at the top of the head, which spins the fastest. Each chakra is associated with certain emotional and psychic needs. Blocked heart chakra energy manifests as self-pity, an inability to trust, or fear of intimacy.

Some heart meditation styles involve visualizing a ball of light that begins in the fourth chakra. Practitioners believe that meditative focus and following the breath allows the ball of light to grow in size and brilliance. The meditating inner eye can direct the ball of spinning light around the body to heal physical and psychic pain and can release it into the world as a positive force.

Through daily practice, heart meditation invites greater and greater compassion for the self and others and, at the same time, allows sorrow and fearfulness to evaporate. There are a few postures heart meditation moves through, beginning with a seated position. The practitioner presses the palms together, with the thumbs pressed into the middle of the chest, and breathes deeply.

By following inhalations and exhalations, thoughts begin to dissolve, distractions fade, and focus sharpens. Next, the practitioner creates a warmth in the palms by rubbing them together, visualizing a light in the warmth. The right palm covers the heart with the left atop it, while the practitioner feels energy from the hands radiating into the chest and warmth from the heart radiating into the hands.

Next, the open palms are turned outward into the world. Many practitioners continue to visualize, seeing compassionate, loving energy released as waves of light. Others prefer to focus on the rhythms of their own beating hearts.

Through heart meditation, practitioners work to heal blocked heart energy. Many new practitioners report a surge of old heartache coming to the fore. Blocked heart energy can also manifest physically — believers point to heart attacks, asthma, and sleep disturbances. In fact, the heart chakra’s body parts include not only the heart but the circulatory system and lungs as well.

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Discussion Comments

By fBoyle — On Aug 16, 2014

@burcinc-- I think I agree with you. What I don't understand about meditation is that there are so many different varieties and yet they all seem to be the same thing. I don't understand what it means to "feel the rhythm of life" or "visualizing light energy."

I think it's nice to sit in silence and slow down one's thoughts and breathe deeply. But I don't understand how doing this will transform us or our psychology or worldview. I personally feel that real life experiences teach us acceptance, compassion and patience. How we react to those experiences helps us grow and mature as individuals. Spiritual growth occurs after difficulties.

I think it's better to pray or to seek guidance and compassion from God rather than sitting still and trying to visualize energy. I respect everyone who does that and benefits from it. It's just not for me.

By stoneMason — On Aug 15, 2014

@burcinc-- Do you believe that stress can lead to a heart attack? I'm sure that you do. So why wouldn't you believe that the same meditation that can relieve stress can prevent a future heart attack?

I think that heart meditation really works and it has many benefits. It's great for our psychology and physical health. It encourages us to accept and love ourselves just the way we are and teaches us compassion for living things. I also believe that heart meditation can help someone overcome an emotional trauma like heartbreak, which can be devastating on so many different levels.

By burcinc — On Aug 15, 2014

I'm skeptical about heart meditation and other such meditations. I believe that meditation can help relieve stress and reduce worries or anxiety. But I don't think that it can do something like preventing a heart attack.

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