The Scripture ~ Finally, all of you, have unity of spirit, sympathy, love for one another, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 1st Peter 3:8
The Spiritual Focus ~ “We are broken hearted but not broken.” Imam Gamal Fouda of Al Noor mosque New Zealand
The Breath Prayer ~ Inhale ~ We are Exhale ~ one
The Devotion ~ Today we turn our attention to faith integrated yoga practices that open our hearts to love, compassion and empathy. We are at the 1/2 point of the Lenten journey and as with many journey’s it is at the 1/2 way point that we can look back, realizing what we let go of and look forward anticipating how we will learn to live fully together in the future. Jesus taught us how to live and love – – a teaching shared by most world religions. At the core of many faiths is an understanding of love, compassion and empathy for the other as the only way to truly know the One.
Empathy and compassion are similar but different. Compassion is the ability to feel for another living being. Empathy is the ability to not only understand another’s feelings, but also to become one with that person’s distress. A recent example of empathy is when the New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden and many citizens of New Zealand donned hijabs and joined with the Muslim community in their grief. They offered more than thoughts and prayers; they joined in, became one with their neighbors in their suffering and gave strength to the broken hearted. Their strength was in being empathetic, coming together in love and compassion, with their broken hearts and proclaiming love would prevail, they are not broken.
The fourth chakra is the heart chakra, and the color associated with this chakra is green. It is believed to be the deep sacred place that in Sanskrit, anahata, means “unhurt, unstruck, and unbeaten.” It is this chakra that is the connection point between our lower energies and our higher energies, an integrating and unifying chakra which – brings wholeness. Heart opening poses and mudras connect us to God by allowing us to become vulnerable and trust God. A heart opening practice opens our hearts to not only love those around us but to join in with those who are broken hearted but not broken.