I went on a retreat this spring. I guess that’s what
call it. It came about by a series of “accidents,” if
there are such
things. My wife, wanting to learn Spanish, went off to Cuba on a
six-week study program. Being a bit of a stick-in-the-mud, I opted to
Right after Marilyn left, several
odd things happened. Our TV set, only a year old, broke down, and
the telephone went dead the following day. So there I was, alone
in a silent house. Feeling lonely and cut off from the world and
wanting to amuse myself, I went out to an afternoon screening of The
Compass, a film starring Nicole Kidman, one of my favourite actresses.
The movie turned out to be an adaptation
of the first in a trilogy of fantasy novels for young adults,called His
Dark Materials by Philip Pullman. Arriving home after seeing
the film, I picked up a newspaper and an article caught my eye about
a local Catholic school board had banned Pullman’s books from
claiming they were anti-religious.
Book censorship has always been
a hot-button issue with me. So off I went to buy the trilogy,
turned out to be a simple read, somewhat like The Lion, the Witch
the Wardrobe. I promptly set to devouring all three Pullman
The aspect that kept me engrossed in
the books was a mysterious substance the author called "dust" - a kind
of cosmic energy that creates its own special atmosphere. I imagined it
like stardust. Not only were the protagonists in the novels
searching for it and struggling to obtain it, but "The Authority" was
to squash it.
Another idea that I took from the book
was that love could be generated by the heart - also intrigued
I was familiar with the concept of opening your heart as a vessel for
- cosmic love, divine love, whatever - but to imply that a human heart
could manufacture love the same way a dynamo generates electricity was
a new and tantalizing possibility.
I started to spend my evenings seeing
if I could generate this kind of love. I’d begin by doing
tai chi, moving my arms in upward and then downward gestures, imagining
that I was drawing up the energies of the earth, then pulling down
energy from the sun and the stars. I had images of water flowing
up from a deep well in the earth, and light streaming down from the
I expanded my vision, picturing the elements of land and sky, heaven
earth, matter and spirit - all the raw energies of life and the
swirling and gathering together, held within a crucible of human
I pictured them flowing into my heart, being transformed into a
fountain of love energy, a glittering golden “dust.” that
from me into the world.
I found myself doing this exercise
for ten or fifteen minutes at a time. It helped that I had the whole
to myself and absolutely no distractions. I began to repeat the
several times a day, becoming fascinated by the results. My chest
cavity would warm and a pleasurable sensation would move out from my
area, until my whole body was humming, my fingertips tingling. It felt
Soon I was sending out this love
energy, this emission of "love-dust,” to all my friends. I
filling the living room, the house, the neighbourhood. I imagined
it as a gift, with no strings attached. Anyone open to it was free to
it according to his/her own wisdom.
So that was how I spent my time,
like a solitary monk in his cell - reading, for his own enlightenment,
a children's novel. Then getting up and sending out heart energy
like a golden light to all who wanted it.
Meanwhile, with mounting
frustration, I battled with the telephone company, trying to get
to the world. After three weeks of running up the street to the
phone at the corner drugstore, making call after call, I finally got a
serviceman to come fix the line.
Shortly after that I found
a surprising message (See below to listen to actual message) left on my
answering machine. A former student, one whom I’d mentored
to time over the years, had driven by my home - not something he ever
he reported in an excited voice. But for some reason he’d
compelled to do so, and he couldn’t believe his eyes.
As he drove down the street,
he’d seen a golden, radiant light pouring out the windows, out of
crack and cranny of the house. He was amazed and wanted to know
was going on, and ended by saying that he’d felt a
“hit” of love like he
had never experienced before as he drove by.
I knew Jeff was extremely
intuitive, perhaps one of the few people I’ve ever met who could
up on such a phenomenon. That he’d seen my house awash in
light, standing out from all others on the street, was amazing to me,
a powerful confirmation that something was happening in my meditations
- something extremely unusual. I was galvanized by his response.
In the weeks
and months since my “retreat,” I have come to believe
it is possible
for the heart to create kind of love. Just as humans evolved into
thinking beings, with a brain able to generate ideas, it seems we might
be evolving a heart that can generate love energy. Or maybe we
had it, and just didn’t know how to use it.
Not romantic, parental
or brotherly love per se, but a cosmic kind. The classic icon of the
heart of Jesus" comes to mind - Christ standing with his arms wide, his
heart open, pouring out love to the world. He is often quoted as saying
“What I can do, you can do likewise.” This seemed as close
as I can come
to finding an image that fits what I was experiencing.
In most religious
this love has been seen as coming from God, a divine being, some
source. Some might say that this source is the indwelling of the divine
within. Because of my recent experiences I’m beginning to
is produced within the human heart - not necessarily the physical organ
that pumps blood through the body, but the etheric one.
A generator gives off an energy
field called electricity - invisible, but we all know it has tremendous
power.From my recent experience, I sense that the heart generates a
field. Though it is invisible, its manifestation can be
I found, in fact, that people were relating to me differently, and the
neighbourhood seemed much friendlier and more at peace.
Maybe I was just more open and
accepting; I don’t know. However, I felt that things were
better. I couldn’t prove that love energy released into a
would change it, but the suspicion that it might was intriguing.
I think of how people describe a place
or a gathering as having "good vibes," as opposed to, say, the recent
of “road rage” on our highways which in some ways is but a
of a negative field force.. No question, force fields
or negative can be generated,
And I often find myself wondering if,
at this moment in time, this particular evolutionary development has
imperative for the very survival of our species. Never before in
history have we humans seemed to need such a crucial ability - to
love. I continue to experiment with the process.,
And as for a happy ending, while spring
segued into summer, eventually the television got fixed, my wife came
and we enjoyed a second honeymoon, most of it in Spanish.
Click here for audio of
been seven months, since the six week
“retreat”. Often I have simply dismissed what
happened during that time as an imaginary phenomena without any reality
to it. However, I have gradually come back into a daily practice
twice a day of going though the process of stirring my heart and
calling up the energies of earth and matter and calling down the
energies of light and spirit and using these as the raw elements of
life to generate in my heart, the human heart, love energy.
During the fifteen minutes or so
that it takes to complete the exercise, I can feel my chest area
warm and my hands start to go glow and radiate. It is a fill good
I image that I send out this love energy
to my friends and to the neighbourhood. I imagine that I join
with others who who are open hearted around the world. I see us
creating a grid of transformers that spread around the globe,
distributing this love energy.. At the same time I align myself
with the sacred heart of Jesus, a personal icon for me that is very
dynamic. I align myself with Christ love, Divine love, Cosmic
love. At such time I can sense that a large love energy is
pouring out of my chest. Where it goes or how it is used is a
mystery to me.
In fact everything about love and
this process is a mystery. I have no evidence or sense that this
“love energy”is real or that is goes out to people or the
community, or that is has any effect whatever on people or the
world. Although I sense that it appears that nothing has changed, there
is a way that everything is different. This is the best way that
I can describe what I believe happens.
The effect it has on me is more
evident. I feel good with myself and sense that people I meet and
people in my life are more open and affectionate towards me. I am
content to accept this whole process as a subjective and illusionary
experience; however, one that is extremely important for me to continue