The Heart


Someone went up to a madman who was weeping in the bitterest possible way.

He said:

‘Why do you cry?’

The madman answered:

‘I am crying to attract the pity of His heart.’

The other told him:

‘Your words are nonsense, for He has no physical heart.’

The madman answered:

‘It is you who are wrong, for He is the owner of all the hearts which exist.  Through the heart you can make your connection with God.’

~ Attar of Nishapur

The won-back heart

Don’t we know, only too well, that protection from pain doesn’t work, and that when we try to defend ourselves from suffering, we only suffer more and don’t learn what we can from the experience? As Rilke wrote, the protected heart that is “never exposed to loss, innocent and secure, cannot know tenderness; only the won-back heart can ever be satisfied: free, through all it has given up, to rejoice in its mastery.”
~ Sogyal Rinpoche