What is Heartfulness?
In Japanese, heartfulness is represented by the character 念 consisting of two parts: 今, now; and 心, heart. 心 is Kokoro, which includes feeling, emotion, mind, and spirit—the whole person. In English, "heartfulness" may be closer to this holistic meaning than the word "mindfulness", which for some people evokes images of the brain as detached from the heart.
Heartfulness seeks balance of the mind and heart, that are separated in a Western sense, with mind as reason deemed superior to emotion or feeling of the heart. Being in a state of heartfulness means going beyond the knowledge that values rationality, detached objectivity and facts about the outer world and listening to the heart, to one’s inner voice. Opening the heart through inner stillness and silence, we become more human, more loving, compassionate, and kind, to one’s own self and to all other human beings. The practice of heartfulness is gentle, appreciative, and nurturing.
Heartfulness begins with mindfulness and extends into other ways of being, embracing vulnerability, humility, acceptance, and authenticity. Realizing our connectedness with others leads to empathy, deep listening, and respect. We become compassionate persons and responsible citizens acting to eliminate suffering in self and others and in the world. Heartfulness is compassionate mindfulness in which the awareness of being connected to the self, perhaps a Higher Self and with everything and everyone makes us hate injustice and moves us to do things for others because their welfare is our concern.