I was recently in London. It was an unexpected trip, that came together in the space of a weekend. But once I decided to go, it felt like the trip took on a momentum of its own, and each moment flowed intentionally into the next like there was a greater force driving this trip.
I was there for my Sociology degree study course, and having left University almost two decades ago in a chaotic and messy way, it felt very healing for me to be in a college, but in a manageable way. I enjoyed interacting with the students who had come from all over the world and learning their stories. I loved learning about the Age of Enlightenment. It gave me newfound respect for rationality, logic and science. I learnt all about how at one time, logic and science were controversial topics because of the absolute authority of the church and aristocracy in Europe.
When not studying, I spent most of my time, with family and friends. This was unlike much of the previous times I had been in the UK, especially when I was much younger and only really interested in elaborate parties in exclusive locations. Now the simple heartfelt company of honest friends and loved ones held a much greater draw.
Research in the new discipline of neurocardiology shows that the human heart generates the strongest electrical and magnetic field of any organ in the body. Compared to the brain, the electrical component of the heart’s field is about 60 times greater in amplitude. The magnetic component of the heart’s field is about 5000 times stronger than the brain and can be detected several feet away.
This is especially found to be so when the heart is expressing emotions of a coherent nature such as care, compassion and concern. This current consciousness research seems to me to be heralding a new Age of Enlightenment where we are moving beyond logic and rationality to wider and subtler heartfelt ways of living.
For myself personally, where external achievements or riches used to impress me, now generosity of spirit does so more, or how openly someone shares about their lives and how they contribute to their community. There is a growing, subtler and deeper part of me that just wants to be in the authentic company of another human being.
In the British Museum, when my friend shared about being abused when he was young, and I also shared with him the effects of my being molested as a child. I felt very grateful for how his honesty allowed us to truly connect. He had been through many brushes with death due to the effects of his self-destructive behaviour, that had arisen from the trauma of being abused. Now he feels that there is little point in standing on ceremony and chooses to live each moment of his life openly and to the fullest. I was glad to have been in his company and his openness set the precedent for the rest of my interactions with people on this trip.
At a friend’s parent’s home, I was moved by stories from her German mother, who had married her father and moved to the UK just after World War 2. She spoke of how she had struggled with being accepted by the English and understanding the different culture she found herself in, which felt both unwelcoming and superficial. Thereafter becoming a recluse and restricting her interactions to those of her immediate family and pet Dachshunds.
In a Vegan restaurant, while eating carrot cake with soy cream, my handsome friend told me of his struggles with depression and finding direction and meaning in his life. Where previously I had been feeling frustrated that he didn’t seem to be very interested in any real conversation at all, I was now sitting up and finally understanding why it had been so difficult to connect with him- he had been struggling to connect with himself.
Coming home I was glad to be in the comforts of my warm island state, and back to my routines somewhat, but I was undeniably richer for the unique heartfelt experiences I had had on my trip. They added colour and depth to the tapestry of my life that is woven from the threads of meaningful encounters I have, when I share with others in an open and heart-centred, about the experiences of our lives.