Racing Mind, Resting Heart

Photograph © 2015 Peggy Kornegger
Photograph © 2015 Peggy Kornegger
So often in our busy lives, we are running from one activity to the next, checking off items on our to-do lists as we go. We can barely keep up with the thoughts that are racing through our overactive thinking minds. But those thoughts are endless; they will run our lives—literally—if we let them. The space that holds those thoughts, however, is open and nonattached (from a Buddhist perspective). If we allow these thoughts, and the inclination to fill our lives with constant busyness, to pass quietly through without grasping and holding them, we can access an entirely different way of being in the world. Spaciousness. Stillness. The resting heart.

The heart is the center of our feelings of love and peace. It also is connected to our soul, which is connected to Spirit. The soul is always at rest, always peaceful in its eternal divine presence within us. When the heart opens completely, the soul’s peace fills it, and it rests. When we drop down into the heart and allow ourselves to open to soulful connection, we too are at rest. The mind’s frantic, repetitive concerns fade to the background, and we can move through the day more peacefully, taking care of what needs to be taken care of but not spinning our mental wheels needlessly. The mind has an important function; it helps us to navigate the logistics of life. But its inclination to overdrive needs balancing by our softer, slower heart and soul.

Modern life, and its adjunct the racing mind, urges us to run. Our heart quietly suggests resting. “Here you will find peace, quiet, home,” it whispers. We can barely hear that whisper at times, but it is there. The key is to attune ourselves to the subtle voice of Spirit that lives within us. Therein lies the higher wisdom and the path to a balanced, fulfilled life—even in the midst of the external world’s frenetic, pressing concerns and demands. The inner voice is so much stronger, ultimately, than the outer shouting that tries to drown it out. It will carry you through life with your health and peaceful center intact. The resting heart soothes the racing mind and helps it to slow down and walk quietly.

Each day is an opportunity to balance head and heart in our lives. They both can live compatibly together if we remember to take a deep breath, pause, and let the mind take its cue from the heart. In my own life, my busy mind is gradually learning to rest in the spaciousness and peace of my heart. And it’s always the process of slowing down, relaxing, and breathing deeply that allows them to come into harmony. It becomes a real-world meditation that interrupts the nonstop frantic pace of daily life and brings me back to center.

“When courageous enough to relax our soul open, the pace at which our mind thinks slows to the pace at which our heart feels, and, amazingly, together, they unfold the rhythm with which our eyes can see the miracle waiting in all that is ordinary.”­—Mark Nepo

2 thoughts on “Racing Mind, Resting Heart

  1. For the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling exhausted – my busy mind and body racing, racing, racing – trying to be everywhere, trying to be present, trying to not disappoint….this frenzy followed a month-long car trip South with my wife Dorothy. We were travelling at a sane, mindful pace, stopping to walk, to listen to the birds, to celebrate beautiful parts of a world we were seeing through new eyes. When I read this particular blog written by my dear friend Peggy, I felt a sudden quietness. I thought about my soul, there all the time, but disconnected by the noisy pace my body and mind were generating. Thank you, dear friend!

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