The Heart of My Soul

by Christopher Lovejoy on February 20, 2011

I appreciate that this world might appear, at least on occasion, as if it were losing its collective heart and soul, but thankfully, this perception can be gently neutralized in your favor.

I say this because any negativity that you’ve ever seen or heard, and that affected you on some level, is a consequence, if only indirectly, of a dark place that you’ve kept securely wrapped inside yourself.

In these dark places, negative beliefs and judgments are stored, such as, “I’m not worthy”, “I’m not good enough”, “I don’t deserve to be happy”, or “I’ll never make it in this world”.

But as I’ve learned from my own experience and from the experience of others, it’s not enough to simply affirm their opposites. Inner wounds call out to be healed with more than topical remedies.

The affirmations, “I am worthy”, “I am good enough”, “I deserve to be happy”, “I will make it in this world”, might feel good for a while, but it usually takes just one negative encounter or experience to remind you what you really believe about yourself and how you truly feel about yourself.

“I’m not worthy” and “I’m not good enough” are the big ones, pointing as they do to the two most fundamental needs of the human psyche: a sense of worthiness and a sense of competence.

And I dare say you wouldn’t be human if you haven’t entertained these negative beliefs and judgments at least once in your lifetime, and I’m not ashamed or embarrassed to admit that I have, too.

Otherwise, how would we even know what anyone is talking about when they talk about having (or not having) a personal sense of value, promise, worthiness, or competence?

Paradoxically, we come to understand and appreciate the most positive aspects of ourselves and our lives only after we’ve been able to negotiate and navigate their negative counterparts.

Sometimes, however, we get stuck: we feel the negativity in ourselves, and we naturally do our best to make light of it or brush it aside, but we haven’t yet been able or willing to process it fully.

In light of this reality, it’s important to understand, appreciate, and realize this: where the mind and spirit are interested primarily in establishing and maintaining a sense of competence, the heart and soul are concerned primarily with establishing and maintaining a sense of worthiness.

Focus? Rationality? Logic? Sound argument? Critical thinking? All good. Up to a point. Especially for the mind and spirit, and especially for establishing and maintaining a sense of competence.

But let us not forget about the heart and soul.

Let us remember to affirm for ourselves a personal sense of value and promise, and to establish and maintain a sense of worthiness. And let us not forget about our feelings.

Our feelings are what connect us to the heart of the soul.

Food for the Heart (of the Soul)

In my writings, I make a clear distinction between the soul and spirit.

To use a simple analogy: where the body is a vessel or container for the soul, the body is a vehicle or carrier for the spirit, and where the soul welcomes quality, the spirit thrives on vitality.

When your soul compels your body to stop, your soul can then pause or dwell or rest in the moment so that it can consider, contemplate, or care about the source of its involvement in that moment.

And when your soul is satisfied with the value it gets from the source of its involvement, your spirit is finally free to move forward with your body to engage future moments with vitality.

I’ve written an inspirational guide called Today, I Give Myself a Gift: Twenty Gifts for the Heart of My Soul that opens up twenty affirmative routes to the heart of your soul.

These routes are reminders of what the soul needs, but they’re also enablers that encourage you to contain, contemplate, and cultivate a robustly personal sense of value, promise, and worthiness.

And because your sense of competence is served by having a robust sense of value, promise, and worthiness, I can also say this: as much as the heart of your soul will benefit from reading and reviewing the selections of wisdom in this guide, your spirit will also benefit, at least indirectly.

Overview of the Content

For ease of reference, I sectioned twenty gifts for the heart of your soul into four groups of five.

The first group – the gifts of presence, clarity, pausing, yearning, and letting go – provide a foundation for the health of your soul so that your soul can recognize its value and promise more easily.

The second group – the gifts of forgiveness, reparation, contentment, detachment, and compassion – provide the means by which your heart can preserve and protect the health of your soul.

The third group – the gifts of ordinary, paradox, spontaneity, surprise, and pilgrimage – provide vital reminders of what your soul needs to make the most of its journey through life.

The fourth group – the gifts of home, nature, dreams, magic, and story – reward your soul for having been ready, willing, and able to receive and appreciate the gifts from these other three groups.

Each presentation of the gift is a condensation of many years of practical and spiritual wisdom and as such are collectively pithy and compact in their expression for ease of digestion and assimilation.

I provide a preamble to this collection and I complete it with a few reflections on the soul and spirit.

For ease of access, I’ll be filing previews to my publications under the category heading of “Previews”, which is accessible through “Categories” in the sidebar of any page on this site. Also, a new tab called “Publications” has been inserted into the navigation menu at the top of every page on this site.

Concluding Remarks

I put my heart and soul into writing this collection, and I’m amazed at how fresh and relevant it seems even after having read it several times. I expect that I’ll be returning to it again and again.

In writing this guide, I found myself drawing closer to the heart of my soul as I fostered an ever deeper sense of worthiness, which served to keep my sense of vulnerability flexible and healthy.

I trust that this work will be well-received by at least a few souls, and I expect that this work will help you to establish and maintain a close and meaningful relationship with the heart of your soul.

It will serve to satisfy your deeply felt desire to stay in touch with yourself, to feel good about yourself, to be in love with yourself, and to celebrate yourself in all of the ways that this can be done.

I trust that you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Practical details for obtaining a copy follow in the section below.

Practical Details

This publication was recommended for anyone who feels a need to affirm or reclaim a personal sense of value, promise, and worthiness by connecting more deeply with the heart of the soul.

As of February 20, 2012, this publication is no longer available for download.

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