When the heart converses with the head
   Date :03-Sep-2023

When the heart converses with the head
In literature, lingua franca and philosophy we find numerous and amazing references to the heart and the head. As per the traditional belief, the heart is associated with emotions and the head with reasoning and logic. Till nineties this traditional belief was taken as metaphorically by the science community.Abig surprise was sprung in 1991 when an American neurocardiologist JA Armour discovered that the heart has its own brain and nervous system. He found that the nervous system of the heart has around forty thousand neurons, called neurites. Informations including feelings, sensations are sent to the brain through numerous afferents. More information is sent to the brain from the heart than information being sent to the heart from the brain.
This wasafantastic discovery in the field of the heart- head connection. In the normal course, the heart is a muscle which pumps blood to all parts of the body including the brain. If this pumping is proper, all parts of the brain also function properly. Hence mental health is totally dependent on cardiac health. On the other hand any negative thoughts or stress badly impact the functioning of the heart. The rhythm of the heart becomes chaotic in case of stress in the mind. Thus cardiac health is also dependent on the functioning of the brain. According to the discoveries in the field of neurocardiology, the brain emits electrical charges determined by thoughts.
The heart has magnetic charges determined by emotions. So when magno electrical charges become synchronised, physical, mental and emotional health is ensured. The beating of the heart is so strong that it produces high levels of magnetic charges. It was also discovered that the heart communicates with the brain through the vagus nerve which is the part of the parasympathetic nervous system, whereas the brain communicates to the heart through the spinal cord. Doc Lew Childre is an American author and the founder of the Heart Math Institute, dedicated to the work of developing heart brain coherence. According to him, the heart has intelligence like the brain.According to Heart Math theory, heart rhythm is coherent in optimal health and becomes chaotic and disordered in stress and illness. Love, compassion, care, love , etc restore the coherence of the heart.
They have developed heart brain coherence techniques where awareness is focussed on the heart and breathing is slowed down with comfortable holding of the breath. This technique has benefitted innumerable numbers of people in establishing physical, mental and emotional well being. In the Indian tradition we find the detailed description of Chakras in many Yogic and Tantric texts. These Chakras are meeting points of subtle channels of life energy. Among the seven Chakras, we find two Chakras named Anahat and Sahasrara respectively denoting the heart and head. In theYogic meditation techniques awareness is centered on these centres to activate and energise them. Lots of otherYogic Kriyas, Bandhas and Asanas are practised to make those centres active and balanced. Thus we find that tradition and science seem to be meeting together. It is also a medical fact that any problem in the heart affects and degenerates the brain. Similarly malfunctioning of the brain causes heart problems. So the heart and head coherence needs to be maintained by nutritious foods, exercises, cultivation of positive thoughts and de-stressing techniques of Yoga.
(The writer is DG Police & CG, Homeguards, Maharashtra)