This technique was taught a thousand years ago by Master Atisha, and the technique itself is possibly a lot older. It is perhaps the centre of the spiritual discipline known in Tibet as Loojong
Master Atisha had a particular of spiritual intrest: Speed and efficiency. Atisha was all about the most effective methods, most supportive attitudes and spiritual totality in general.
That's why his so concise description of this technique, quoted above, expresses the totality of this technique. The starting point, and the method were taught person to person. The text served as a reminder of the practice and a concise distillation of the full teaching.
This meditation is a key method for growing your heart centre and using it consciously. The core work of this school is the re-development of the Dakini's arts and practices, in ways appropriate to the world as it is now. This practice is one that we treasure as a glowing ember among the ashes of Ancient Tantra, which has contributed greatly to this school's fire, to the heart of this phoenix.
So, don't be daunted by Atisha's words, the scale of the aim he urges. If you're even just tasting, dabbling with the idea of Tantra perhaps being your path, just taste this, dabble with this too. Particularly if you get some knocks along with life's caresses.
Tantrikas often deliberately and consciously do things and make choices that they know could bring them hurt and suffering as well as joy and bliss. We know that truth is to be found just as much in our tears as in our laughter. Living with this approach means that Tantrikas are in for Strong Feelings, often mixed. Some of them quite destructive to the body if not handled quickly and thoroughly.
Heart meditation is a way to handle current hurt and to grow the heart's capacity to handle more. With some diligent practice at times of pain, suffering, and particularly heart-soreness, your heart's capacity increases beyond the requirements of your own suffering. What used to literally be "killing you" becomes "Heart Food".
Atisha was all packed for his Mission to Tibet when someone told him what lovely, mannered, natural and thoroughly people the Tibetans were and how lucky he was to be going there.
This information didn't please him at all. Quite the contrary. He solved his problem by arranging that a thoroughly unpleasant, mean-spirited fellow ( A Bengali chef) he knew join his Mission. Just making sure that he would have at least some "fuel" – some negative emotion, some hurt – available in his own body so that he could demonstrate the practice.
About the CD
On this CD, I guide you into this technique, supporting you to get the "knack" of it, to allow your opening to feeling your own hurt, and allowing your heart to transform your experience of that hurt. Sound Artist Gabriel added some smooth background tones, just to deepen the feeling of it.
The practice of Heart Meditation does not require High Ideals or a Great Spiritual Purpose. At a practical level, for most people, it's the most easing and supportive of practices for just getting through the tougher parts of life's journey. Good medicine. Just, it may carry the risk of you becoming a Seeker, maybe even a Tantrika … don't take that risk lightly.
Heart meditation CD (disc in box, posted) available at CreateSpace (an Amazon Company) for $11.95