By Brian Hawley
Of all the organs, the heart is the only one that is thought of to have its own intelligence.
Our body is one of the most complicated yet amazing pieces of biological machinery in our known universe. It is our temporary housing while we learn, play create, and experience our world. Housed in our body are seven major energy centers that start at our perineum and end up just above the crown of our head. The three lower centers absorb energy from the surroundings and comprise of “earthly” energies that are necessary for our survival on this plane, and they operate on a bit lower frequency than the others. These lower three are also associated with Earth (Prithvi), Water (Jala), and Fire (Agni). Then there are the upper three chakras that are in higher vibrations and contribute energy into the environment. These are associated with the elements of Air (Vayu) and Space (Akash). These associate with the five Mahabhutas or master elements. Now if you notice I only mentioned six energy centers.
There is a junction point in the middle of these upper and lower energy centers and that is our fourth energy center. This is the heart center, also known in Sanskrit as Anahata. Its color is associated with Green, but in some cases of higher vibration it can turn pink. It is represented by two triangles superimposed upon one another, with one facing up and the other facing down. This is a very special center in the fact that it can direct energy either up or down depending on your thoughts, intentions, attention, and energy you are putting into it. It is also said to be the bridge between the earthly and the non-earthly.
Ancient Egyptians called the heart “ieb” and believed it to be the center of life—rather than the brain. In our western medical society the heart has long been thought of as merely a pump, but recently we are discovering new things about this organ. Did you know that the heart has its own electric field, and that is even stronger than the brain’s electric field?
Of all the organs the heart is the only one that is thought of to have its own intelligence. The heart communicates with the brain and body in four major ways.
Neurological communication (nervous system)
Biochemical communication (hormones)
Biophysical communication (pulse wave)
Energetic communication (electromagnetic fields)
This organ not only generates its own electromagnetic field, it also connects us to the field around us. Most all of us have felt the openness of our heart center at one time or another. That feeling of joy, bliss, connectedness, and being at peace with ourselves. It can also have the opposite effects, sadness, heaviness, worry, stress and just not feeling worthy. Biologically, this is because the heart has a direct connection to both branches of the autonomic nervous system. The sympathetic (gas pedal) and the parasympathetic (break). Both of these branches continuously relay messages to the heart and brain. In fact, the heart and brain have the most connections of any two systems in the body.
When these two systems, the heart and brain, are in coherence with each other and the autonomic nervous system is balanced, you feel harmony and peace; you are in homeostasis. The opposite is also true. In disharmony, we feel agitated, blocked, stressed, and over time this can actually cause physical harm. The Mayo Clinic found that physiological stress was one of the strongest predictors of heart disease.1
It is also known the heart is an “autorhythmic” organ. This means that the heartbeat is originated from within the heart itself and not directed from the brain. This has been demonstrated thousands of times in the lab when the living heart is dissected out of its host and placed in Ringers solution. There it will continue to beat for several hours independent of any neural input from the brain.
Another key component about its independence is in the developing fetus. There it will start beating before the brain is even developed. The heart is usually formed about the three-week mark whereas the brain is around eight weeks.2 This establishes the fact that the heart is capable of direct contact with the nervous system without the brain.
This new data represents the beginning of a new medical discipline called Neurocardiology. Doctors have discovered that the vastness of neural networks within the heart are quite developed and is characterized as a “brain in the heart”3,4 The heart-brain, as it is commonly called, or intrinsic cardiac nervous system, is an intricate network of complex ganglia, neurotransmitters, proteins and support cells, the same as those of the brain in our heads.
In addition, the intrinsic cardiac nervous system even has both short-term and long-term memory functions and can operate independently of central neuronal command.
What it Means
So what does all this mean to the average Joe? It means that our thoughts and outlook on life have a direct connection to our hearts; they can either kill us or heal us. It means that when our thoughts are positive we will create a chemical (that is called a feeling) in the body that can stimulate our heart to feel joy and wholesome, and we feel fulfillment and gratitude. This creates brain-heart coherence. When these two major players are in coherence together it helps align all our energy centers and we create both physical and spiritual homeostasis. This is also one of the key steps into manifesting and changing our lives to express the best versions of ourselves.
So the next time you hear someone say that the heart is only a pump you know there is a lot more behind the scenes and how special this one organ really is.
- T. Allison, D. Williams, T. Miller et al., “medical and Economics Cost of Physiologic distress in patients with Coronary Artery disease” Mayo clinic Proceedings, vol. 70, no. 8 pp. 734-742. (Aug 1995)
- M. Gazzaniga “The Ethical Brain” NY Times (June 19th, 2005
- Armour, J.A., Anatomy and function of the intrathoracic neurons regulating the mammalian heart, in Reflex Control of the Circulation, I.H. Zucker and J.p. Gilmore, Editors. 1991, CRC Press: Boca Raton. p. 1-37.
- Armour, J.A., Potential clinical relevance of the ‘little brain’ on the mammalian heart. Exp Physiol, 2008. 93(2): p. 165-76.
Dr. Bryan Hawley has served in the healthcare arena for over 30 years. He has owned several high-end clinics and has traveled all over the United States lecturing and teaching healthcare practitioners. He currently teaches guided meditations and energy work to clients all over the world. He lectures on topics such as neurogenesis, epigenetics, metacognition, and how we can literally reprogram our brains and create the lifestyle of our dreams. He is currently finishing two books on the subject which will be available in January 2019. Contact him at email@example.com.