Union of Three Hearts is one of the foundation meditations for the practice of Sheng Zhen. Over the summer while practicing this mediation, I gained insights into its meaning.
The Three Hearts
● Dantian is the home of the Life Force and is connected to the physical world of the earth, including all the things that are not “living beings”, like the water, oceans, mountains, winds, rain, sunlight - the whole earth.
Connect through the yonquan in the soles of the feet all the way down to the earth’s core of solid love.* Expand your dantian to embrace the earth, to connect to the whole planet.
● Heart is the home of the soul, and is connected to all living things, to life.
Connect your heart to life through your laogong. Expand your heart so it embraces all living things. You love everything; you love everyone.
● Ni-wan is the home of the spirit and is connected to heaven & the metaphysical. The land your spirit came from.
Connect through your baihui to embrace the whole universe. Dance in the stars, and the stars dance in you.
These three hearts are not boxes; they are three parts of one whole. And like yin and yang, each part always has some of the other two in it.
So the physical world supports/houses the living beings, and in turn, the “materials” of all beings go back to the non-living physical world when life ends.
The earth is of course part of the universe, part of the cosmos, and so it is part of the metaphysical.
Conversely, looking inward/downward, when Master Li talks of the core of the earth being solid love*, this is about as metaphysical as you can get.
Of course the Metaphysical has a physical aspect, as stars, galaxies, all the “things” we’ve identified in the universe are matter and dark matter, and are physically real.
However, in their totality, they are beyond the intellect, beyond comprehension in a physical sense, especially when you consider dark stars, nebulae, and black matter.
Plus, the metaphysical contains all the things that are not physical, but we have words for, like the Saints, souls, dark energy, and the music of the spheres. And it also contains all the things for which we have no words.
And as Sheng Zhen practitioners, we know that a part of the metaphysical is in all life.
As your dantian expands to embrace the whole earth, your heart expands to embrace all life, and your ni-wan expands to embrace the whole universe.
The living, the non-living, and the metaphysical worlds are all connected in you, through you.
There is no you. Everything is merged into one and qi/energy/love flows freely between everything. This is the Union of Three Hearts.
I had a vision at Eastover while walking to class one morning. As I looked east from the parking lot behind the main building, I saw the sun rising over the long mountain. It shone through the windows along the top of the pool building’s east wall.
The light reflecting off the pool water created swirling helix patterns on the pool house walls that danced and shimmered with joy.
Witnessing this dance through the multiple large windows that faced the parking lot, the show appeared as a multi-paneled movie on LARGE screens running the full length of the pool building.
I have been meditating on this image, and feel it symbolizes the union of three hearts.
The pool is the deep water of life’s ocean – the dantian.
The interaction of the metaphysical sunlight with the ocean of life creates transforming energy/playful qi/a joyous spirit.
The space between the water and the lights is empty, waiting to be filled by an open heart that embraces life. All life.
You love all life. Your heart encompasses all life. You are one.
Your heart full of love is grounded in the depths of the ocean, yet dancing with the stars.
* Master Li mentioned this at Eastover Teacher Training, May 2018