The Heart Has Infinite Capacity

Dear Wanda,

You are meant to be renewed.

You are meant to always begin again.

Each day is a fresh opportunity to wonder, to focus, to get clear, to take action, to simmer.

You were never created to stay stuck.

Sitting in my Quaker meeting yesterday, I thought a lot about the potential and capabilities we have in this life. I wrestle all the time with questions of destiny, of the concept of “meant to be.” In some ways, it is comforting, and in other ways, it makes me feel bound. If I am going to always end up in a certain place, doesn’t that train my mind in figuring out how to get there, and get there sooner, with less suffering, or with greater ease? In thinking about a stop on my road of destiny, I get caught up in the how, and in the question, “Am I doing this right?” Or the worry, “What if I never get there? What if I screw everything up?”

And Rainer Maria Rilke, my guide, my hero says, “The future stands still, but we move in infinite space.”

Man, I love that guy. Do you know he wrote that when he was 28? He knew this shit at 28!

I’m digressing.

But I didn’t have a point.

Oh yes, I did! Newness! Beginnings, always! Following your destiny, if you even have one! Or maybe change your destiny, if you can! Possibilities are infinite!

When you feel broken, and weary, and tired, when you’ve endured another heartbreak, when you just can’t figure life out no matter how hard you try, it is easy to give up, or get stuck. Or maybe it’s not so easy, you tell me. I know a lot of stuck people, but I don’t get stuck myself. I move and flow all the frickin’ time, so much so that some people probably think I’m crazy. Can she really be crying one hour and laughing the next? Yes! That’s called being alive! That’s called processing your emotions! It’s really neat. It’s the way we’re supposed to live. Then shit doesn’t get repressed and you get sick and everything, or build this barrier around your heart and nothing good can get in until something really extreme happens.

In The Wisdom Way of Knowing, Cynthia Bourgeault talks about our capacity as human beings as the metaphor of being an acorn. As an acorn, you have the potential to grow into an oak tree, but you don’t have to. It is sort of up to you, you see? You have great capacity, but you have to take steps toward that oak-liness, or you just get trampled on by wandering deer.  Or, perhaps, you start on your path toward becoming the oak tree. You start to grow and get yourself rooted and you reach toward the heavens and you keep learning and growing and getting watered by divine fairy dust and things are going well. But then a storm comes and you clench up, and you don’t go up anymore, you stop progressing. And you do that for many months, many seasons. Meanwhile, there are all these little birds chirping around you and woodpeckers coming to your bark and squirrels shuffling leaves at your feet, and so maybe you decide to wake up and try this thing again, and you start growing, and you get closer and closer toward vastness and tallness but so much is a matter of how much energy you’re bringing toward your own destiny.

Isn’t this kind of talk fun? I am having so much fun.

And time is not linear, and there is no structure to it, and what you do in this one, physical realm, that you think matters more than any other, may be the least significant of all, because there is some astral plane you also exist on where a whole lot of other shit is happening, but let me tell you, honey, if you do your best in this world, in this realm, and you grow and heal and progress, you are having impact on so many other levels, in so many other realms, and reaching straight back into history and ancestry and pulling those creatures out of the fire, too, and everyone rises up, because that’s what heaven is, and most of us barely know.

Whoo! That was a mouthful. Oh my God, I need to write a book!

So, getting back.

Our “thinking-brains” are very limited. Our egos generally run the show, and we have all sorts of worries and fears, and usually, we’re just telling ourselves stories about the way the world works, and that keeps us stuck in our narrow perception of things, and then we get to sit in the driver’s seat of life and assume we know everything, we know how things are going to go, and that mentality keeps us safe and comfortable and very stuck, but safe and comfortable, see?

And then someone dies. Or we lose our jobs. Or we get an illness. Or we hear about war happening. And it’s our chance to buck up and figure out if the way we’re living, if the way we’ve been thinking, is really contributing to our greater good, or if we need to get working on some things so we can actually have an impact in this world. And I don’t mean having an impact by creating the next iPhone, or something, or making a million dollars. I’m talking about getting to the essence of what’s real and true, of considering what actually matters, which is not our thinking brains, but our actions, and our ability to spread love in any of its many forms, because the garden of heaven spreads like a mustard seed, like fairy dust, making lives better each and every day, and we’re the acorns that grow into oak trees when we start embodying that fact and acting all the time for our own betterment.

Man, I can’t write a short sentence today. That’s okay! Just breathe! 

Your heart, I want to tell you, has infinite capacity, infinite potential to grow and renew. I mean, the Divine is just the ultimate noodge, always giving you opportunities to grow and be broken open in this way, because this is the absolute best thing. The Divine is going to make you uncomfortable, and ruffle your feathers, and, like a nagging madre, say See, see, see, see, see, see? And you can keep fighting it and being broken and lonely inside—yuck!—or you can be like, Fine, and start to practice some silence and some meditation, and start to read some books that might help you, and start to talk to people about the areas in your life where you are vulnerable, and start to let the cracks show, because we’re all made of cracks, honey! No one is built to be a frickin’ fortress, and if you’re a fortress, you’re missing the whole point of what it means to be alive, so stop that shit.

Come alive, rise up, pound your heart with your hands, wake up, get a voice, learn your power, be the deepest, truest, most lovingest version of you, and you can never—I mean, seriously, never!—go wrong.

Kind regards!

–Jana Rose, aka MotherJana


Photo by Malachi Brooks on Unsplash