From “Zen Cards” by Daniel Levin:
Allow your actions to flow from the innocence of your heart. Then SINCERITY is assured. Follow the Way. Live authentically. Restore innocence to the world.
I kept this card out for several days in order to let the guidance it offers to clarify and become true to me.
Is my heart innocent still at the age of 70?
What does it mean to live authentically and am I doing that?
Can innocence be restored to our world?
By the time I was in my teens, I was being told on a fairly regular basis that I was being naive. How could I see the good in people and trust so easily?! Life brought me some pretty tough lessons that challenged my ability to trust. I still see the good in people, even though I now understand I may be seeing their potential for good rather than the current reality. I also now understand that trust is not a gift; it needs to be earned. I take things more slowly with most people until I see how they move through the world, until we know each other better. Trust builds over time so I am not as vulnerable to hurt as I once was. Even trusted friends hurt one another now and then. Wounds can heal and trust can be re-built, as long as I am willing to forgive myself for unreasonable expectations or my share in any problems; as long as I am willing to forgive a friend for doing the same.
Back to my questions.
Innocence is defined as lacking guile or corruption; purity. So, yes, my heart is still innocent because I am motivated by love and never intend to do harm. I am also not naive enough to believe that I never will hurt another. I don’t always ask enough questions or think things through. Because of this, I have hurt others without meaning to do so. I am usually quick to own my stuff and make amends, which means being more aware in the future. After all, we are learning as we go.
For me, living authentically means to live my truth as consistently as possible, whether others understand or not. I won’t belabor how I define my truth but generally it means that my intention is to live from a place of love and compassion for myself and others. It means being present in the moment, present with myself and others. It means allowing others to live and move through the world as they so choose – this part of my truth has often been misinterpreted as a lack of caring, which could not be further from the truth.
And yes, I think innocence, as defined above, can be restored to the world – perhaps not to every individual – but in general, yes. Many people are living without guile, with the intention of doing no harm. The more of us that choose this Way; the more it will spread. Every time I meet a person who lives authentically from an innocent heart, I am excited and encouraged to continue doing the same.
Care to join the dance? Can you dare to believe in yourself and others? Can you set an intention to attract people into your life who live authentic lives? I hope so!
I love you and desire only your highest good and the highest good of all. Namaste.