The Heart chakra has many amazing properties. One of these properties, is that it is at the joining place between two universes. It is the place between the lower chakra universe of duality, karma and individuality; and the upper chakra universe of Non-duality. The effect of this is that once your ego starts to erode and your heart begins to open, you begin to experience extraordinary empathy: feeling other people's moods, emotions, and even physical sensations.
Empathy is a natural aspect of human potential, so natural that people who are utterly without it, are considered dangerously insane. We hear the labels for them on the nightly news: sociopaths, psychopaths. Dangerous, scary people who commit terrible acts because they are wholly unable to identify with the pain they inflict on their victims. We think of them, as somehow less that human, like their human heart is missing, replaced by sharp edged stone. Despite this, people who have too much empathy are usually not taken seriously.
Because the heart chakra is connected to non-duality, it transcends time and space to connect with the Divine, with All that is. In a nutshell, the entire universe you see outside of you, is also inside of your heart. (Don't try to understand it, your brain will not be able to take it in. Just ask your heart voice, if what I say is true.) As the ego separation breaks down, the illusion of separation between the inside of your heart and the outside, erodes. The result is incredible empathy.
Empathy may be very upsetting to your ego. Its job has been to give you an illusion of boundaries and separateness so it may get very threatened by the evidence that the gig is up. Well, there is really no going backwards with K., and the empathy never really goes away. It increases, because it is part of your growing into becoming All that Is. The ego that complains about violated boundaries, eventually will fade and die off. Then the empathy becomes normal, like any of your other senses, and lots of fun! Once you have it you will never really want to go back, because empathy is potential for intimacy greater than all the romantic poetry can describe.
To cope with empathy, simply surrender the incoming emotions to your Higher power to handle, as they come in. Because of the effect of the unity, when you clear them from yourself, they lift from the other person too. This is called "Karma Yoga" and it is both a growing path, and an act of "service to other" that makes nice karma bonus points for your own evolution. The empathy serves you by helping you to uncover your own ego issues and motivating you to surrender them. After all, what you see in others is a reflection of you, and the empathy does not stick persistently unless there is an issue of your own being triggered by it... so surrender their stuff that is in you, and your own stuff will clear too.
Additionally, you may find these affirmations to be useful:
- I reset my four fields to their proper size and vibration.
- I resolve to use only my own energy, especially in a social situation.
Affirmations courtesy of Yvette.
If you are engaging empathy as a conscious act of interference because your ego thinks someone else needs to change, and the person who owns it does not want to give it up then it will get stuck in you. Beware the road to hell of "Good intentions!"
Generally, if the empathy comes of "divine will" then Spirit will also give you the power to handle it with ease, so long as you surrender.
However, most often the cause of unwanted empathy is an unconscious projection on the part of the empath. On an unconscious level, everyone is perfectly empathic and telepathic. So if you are walking around thinking about how unenlightened people really suck, or whatever your bitch is that day, then you are broadcasting that message to everyone within range, and sending it out into the universe like a prayer. What you put out comes back multiplied.
The same can happen if you are walking around broadcasting "love and light" to everyone you meet. The energy stirs up karma within them, which flows back to you. Oddly, this common new age idea is actually negative. If you are seeing someone as being in need, then you are not seeing them as Gods of their own lives. You are seeing illusion. Never project energy onto someone with out their consent.
Another cause of empathy is quite simply, insecurity. If you need approval, love, validation, forgiveness, or anything else from anyone besides the Divine within you, to feel good about yourself then you are going begging. Holding out your tin cup for donations, and people discard their garbage into you. Nature abhors a vaccuum. Stay grounded, keep your focus turned toward Spirit within yourself and your heart will become "My cup runneth over with love."
To engage empathy deliberately, simply identify with the person, Like “walking a mile in their moccasins.” Focus on the unity of all things, and on them being a part of you, and you will establish unity with them, and begin to feel their feelings. They are a part of you. Be discerning in doing this deliberately, as an act of ego: the road to hell is paved with 'good intentions'. To some people it will feel invasive, and uncomfortable. Respect people's privacy and personal boundaries.
Free Will is Goddess Law. If you deliberately use empathy to take on an emotion or state that the other person is not ready or willing to surrender, then you may get stuck with it. You cannot surrender what is not yours. You can send it back to them, with your intentions but that may feel like a psychic attack to them. They will get their own emotions back, and some of your frustration and ego junk too. If you get stuck like this, the best thing to do is to get another empath to lift it from you. Oddly, the laws of free will change at the third party level to allow this.
To avoid empathy, stay focused on the Divine within yourself. Keep your nose in your navel, so to speak. Mind your own business. Action makes karma, so if your ego thinks it needs something, or wants to change someone, turn it over to Spirit to handle. That mustard seed of faith will result in miracles that your ego could never arrange.
Many of us become so empathic that wherever our attention goes, our energy goes and our empathy too... and we must remain detached from the world spiritually, or become hermits. "In the world, but not of it." To remain in balance, continue to surrender. Choose not to get involved in your own life's drama, let nothing be more important than inner peace. Keep your primary attention directed inward, gazing into the Void, into the universe in your heart, and your ears always listening for the Heart voice. Give detached, casual attention to your external reality.
This does not mean you have to become a monk and spend all of your time meditating! The point is for all of life to become a meditation, and be living it more fully! Once you get the hang of keeping your primary attention turned inwards, you will find your inner vision will show you what you really need to see and do to get the best results in your external reality, better than your ego judgments ever could.
As the empathy progresses, it becomes second nature just like any other sense, and it can be really fun! You are All that Is, and through empathy you can find out what it is like to be a tree, an eagle, a star, a stone... everything speaks to you. Through empathy, your consciousness expands. You integrate more and more of the Universe into your embodied experience.
If you are really troubled by empathy with someone you would rather be detached from, do not try to shield yourself. The resistance of trying to create boundaries- more separation, when your K. is busy trying to clear the separation gets messy. Instead, use your intuitive vision to look for the cord of energy that connects you to the other person, and imagine cutting it.