When we are talking about the empty heart, we are really talking about the empty mind. Buddha has used the word heart instead of mind because mind has become associated with the idea that it is only the process of thinking, and the process of feeling is in the heart, and the heart is deeper.
These ideas have been created by the poets. But the truth is, you can call it empty mind or you can call it empty heart; it is the same. Emptiness – you are just a watcher and all around there is nothing with which you are identified, there is nothing to which you are clinging. This non-clinging watchfulness is the empty mind, no-mind, or empty heart. These are simply words. The real thing is emptiness – of all thoughts, feelings, sentiments, emotions. Only a single point of witnessing remains.
And you will find it difficult. Disidentifying from thoughts is easier because thoughts are more superficial. Disidentifying from the feelings is a little difficult because they are deeper, and they are rooted more in your biology, in your chemistry, in your hormones. Thoughts are just floating clouds. They are not rooted in your chemistry, in your biology, in your physiology, in your hormones, they are just floating clouds without any roots. But feelings have roots, so it is difficult to uproot them.
It is easy to become watchful about the theory of relativity. It is difficult to be a witness of your anger, your love, your greed, your ambition. The reason is they are rooted more deeply in the body. But if you can disidentify yourself from the body, there is no difficulty.
And, Maneesha, being a woman it is a little more difficult. There are differences between men and women….
Mulla Nasruddin was reading his newspaper and suddenly called his wife and said, “I have caught four flies: two are males and two are females.”
The wife said, “My god, how did you manage to know their sex?”
He said, “Easy! Two were reading the newspaper with me for hours. And two were sitting on the mirror, completely glued.”
So it is a little difficult. But witnessing is such a sharp sword – it cuts thoughts, feelings, emotions, in a single blow. And you know it by experience now: as you go deeper in your meditation, the body is left far behind, the emotions, the thoughts…only the witnessing remains. That is your authentic nature. The emptiness of the buddha’s heart…when you are so empty, you are one with the buddha. You are one with all the buddhas of all times, past, present, future.