The intellect has a way of building a fence around the heart, cutting us off from what we know to be true in a way that is hard to prove according to the categories in which proof matters. – Rob Bell
When someone says “follow your heart” it can sound cliche. It’s what we tell sweet little girls in elementary art class. But what if there was a deep and urgent truth behind the seemingly childish and frivolous idea of following the heart. The world is loud and if we are not careful our own voice – that truth living inside of us – can easily be drowned out. All of a sudden the world’s voice becomes our own. And we think we are on the right track because we are gaining popularity or money or fame or status.
Stream of consciousness writing has been a place for me to practice listening to my heart. It’s all I have to go on, and there are no consequences for doing so. What I’ve found is that my writing can come alive in this space, without me ever trying to control a thing. Sometimes the writing is dead and bland, but other times it is quite the opposite. I’ve gone back to reread many sections in my journals over the years, and have been shocked at the deepness, the honesty, the rawness of my own thoughts. “Wow, I thought that? I felt that way?” I surprise myself. Even though the words came from me, their truth can still pierce me. There seems to be a voice in this heart of mine, and she’s got a strength of her very own.
I’ve used my intellect for many things. It helped me soar through school, earn A’s and awards and scholarships and degrees and jobs and fantastic performance reviews from my supervisors. But I’m in a place where, though my intellect is still important to me, I’d like to explore the quiet voice of my heart a little more. I am curious as to where that will lead me, and what truth I might uncover. Maybe you’d like to join me?