In Sanskrit the nam anahata, was given to the fourth chakra, which literally means "not struck." It refers to the subtle vibration that is the creative energy of the Void and is chanted as the sacred syllable OM. It is said to be heard inwardly in meditation when consciousness has awaken in the heart or kundalini has arisen in this chakra. The fourth chakra is also, commonly referred to as the Mystical Heart in the Christian mysteries and as the Intelligence of the Heart in the Egyptian Mysteries. When the heart center is awaken, then the impulses of spiritual inspiration and altruistic love pour in and an ardent desire for all beings to enjoy the love and beatitude available at this level of awareness is, felt. In the Buddhist tradition, this urge is, expressed as the vow to assist all sentient beings to reach Enlightenmnt. A person who actualizes this vow becomes a Bodhisattva. All forms of romantic love are, motivated by this search for union with the source of love. However, it is an unconscious distortion of the ego and a great misfortune that this search is directed outward and that the source is misunderstood as being “a person” outside of oneself. This misunderstanding is due to the ego being divorced from its source, which is its Perfect Model or “inherent blueprint” - its complementary divine Self. It is in the heart center that the union of the female and male (Yin/Yang) energies takes place. In other words, when the two opposite and complementary energies within each one of us takes place, then Cosmic Consciousness awakes in the ego of a seeker – the bud becomes a rose… and unfolds the quality of unconditional love in his/her mystical heart.

As for Buddhist Tantra, the fourth chakra has twelve bright red petals. Inside of this we find two smoke-colored interlocking triangles. Together they make the Vayu mandala, which represents the harmonious rela­tionship between the male and female forces of the cosmos. Inside the Vayu mandala, which also symbolizes the air element, there is an antelope. Noted for its rapidity, the antelope is a good vehicle and symbol for the ancient god of the wind, Vayu. In Buddhist Tantra, the fire element is associated with the heart center. Its symbol is a red triangle pointing upwards. Lama Govinda claims that this fire is not physical but psychic. It is the fire of religious devotion and inspiration. He goes on to say that the heart center is the seat of the intuitive mind and transmuted feelings (divine love and compassion), and that it is a primary focus in meditation because it is where the universal is realized in human experience.'

The Primordial Buddha Aksobhya sits on the throne of the heart chakra. His Mirror-like Wisdom dispels the illusion of the separateness of things and reflects their innate Voidness. His obscuring passions are anger and aversion.

For the Christian Mysteries it is the place of the sacrificial God. The center where the "Perfect Model" dissolves (the Sephirah of Tipheret in Kabbalah) completely in the Great Void of pure Being…

As the heart center begins to unfold, it often brings a teacher who serves as the embodiment of this level of consciousness. This happens in both planes, the inner and outer physical planes of existence. In other words, it is the place from where the Perfect Model of a seeker makes an impact on his ordinary level of consciousness. It may also open his/her level of consciousness to conscious communication with the spiritual hierarchy of beings guiding the souls of this planet through intuition, vivid dreams, strange encounters and the like. Disciples may in turn act in the heart of a group working to guide terrestrial evolution.

Currently, the energies of the heart center are becoming more active as we collectively evolve beyond the stages of con­sciousness related to the lower, three centers. One problem in this transition, so prevalent in the New Age movement, is the attempt to live in the heart without dealing with the repressions and ego drives in the lower centers. If, for example, we are angry, arrogant, desperate, or emotionally insecure, love does not flow freely. A forced decision to be loving cannot be the same as a spontaneous outpouring of deeply felt love.

Confusion also arises between romantic love and altruistic love. Romantic love is associated with the projection of the anima and animus and the desire for the perfect relationship. The romance is an ideal, a projection of an ideal complementary that can only unfold from within.

Altruistic love, on the other hand, is an empathy and com­passion that enables us to act in a deeply caring way. It is an unconditional acceptance of life and respect of others. There is a depth of understanding and wisdom in this love that only comes from a profound, suffering and an intense experience of life. It is not a projection or a form of control, but a very sincere openness and surrender to what is. A seeker experience disappointments, but he/she will never be broken hearted if he/she remains open to his/her potential for being in this state of unconditional love.

We might think that opening the heart center brings only peace and love. Aside from meeting with our own repressed grief and fear of being vulnerable, there are many, difficulties that arise as the heart opens. The heart center invokes intense forces from the soul and inner spiritual realms. The activities, or mere pres­ence, of a person with an enlivened heart center may stimulate intense defensive reactions in others, as the love vibration penetrates barriers and stirs into resonance the love that has been buried beneath untold pain and suffering. In Esoteric Healing, Alice Bailey points out that the difficulties accompanying the opening of the heart center are some of the most typical, and problematic experienced on the spiritual path. These include reactions from others that range from wild devotion to extreme hatred, causing much confusion and turmoil for the seeker. However, as time goes on, the seeker learns not to identify with these reactions and withdraw personal attachments and expectations from this kind of love. With compassion and patience, he/she allows others to accept or reject the forces of unconditional love in the heart center. 

Like the root of a rose needs time to be nourished and grow in the darkness of the soil before emerging into a delicate bud and then become a beautiful rose with its exquisite scent. In the same manner the process of unfolding the Mystic Heart within a seeker occurs after it has unfolded and experienced its hallowed qualities and released the subtle perfume of Unconditional Love.


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