The University of the Heart is a two-year program in the art and science of meditation and its application to every aspect of your life. As more than half of the program is online text, audio and video, the program can be done part-time, from home, while you maintain your job and relationships.
The objective of the program is to develop in you the skill and understanding of mysticism that will lead you to the mystical state of "Illumination." You will learn advanced meditation practices that transform your self and your world, and our experiential tests will give you confidence to apply the various energies of Love in your life -- how to heal and transform people and situations by changing the flow of energy within your heart. The reach of your heart can extend to your family, friends, acquaintances, and beyond -- there is no boundary to your heart.
The Basis of the School:
The material is drawn from every tradition that honors the heart, particularly those mystics that have actually experienced the Heart of All and left instructions for us to follow. We especially draw on the teachings of Hazrat Inayat Khan, Rumi, Walt Whitman, Shakespeare, St. Francis, the Christian Desert Fathers, and the Egyptian Hierophants. This teaching is interpreted by the living teachers of the Institute for Applied Meditation on the Heart (iamHeart), Susanna and Puran Bair.
Now accepting applications for the Class of 2019, to start in September 2017
The Institute for Applied Meditation on the Heart (iamHeart) has developed Heart Rhythm Meditation as a contribution to the emerging culture of the heart. We have always insisted that meditation, the most powerful of all techniques, be applied in very practical ways, advancing our health, relationships and accomplishments in life.
The two-year program of iamU is a package of iamHeart programs offered as an in-depth training in meditation on the heart. The two-year university program comprises:
- Eight 8-week experiential webcourses in dialogue with a certified teacher, covering all the 100-level courses of the curriculum
- Two 12-day in-residence workshops in Tucson.
- 24 sessions of mentoring with a certified mentor
- Two group retreats of 5 days each, led by Puran and Susanna Bair
- One 7-day private retreat conducted and customized by a certified retreat guide
A graduate of this training will have understood and practiced all the teachings and skills needed to attain the mystical state of "Illumination" in which one radiates light from the heart and operates in life with the experience that "I am a part of all things and all things are a part of me."
iamHeart is committed to securing accreditation for iamU as a post-graduate, degree-granting institution. This is a process of several years requiring the involvement of the first several graduating classes.
Courses begin in early September each year. The class of 2018 will be the 7th class of iamU. As of this writing in 2016, five classes have graduated and two are in-process, comprising 131 people. Applications are now being accepted for the Class of 2019.
The lasting results that our graduates have integrated into their lives are simple but profound:
- the experience of being seen, known, and adored by a community of life-long friends,
- the deep conviction that they are not alone and can never be alone,
- an experience of unconditional love that they can receive and give freely,
- a remembrance of joy without cause,
- the discovery of a sense of an individual, unique purpose of their life,
- dedication to that purpose and a confidence that their lives are making a difference,
- deep insight into the love, harmony and beauty in the hearts of others, whether expressed or not, and
- knowledge of how to uncover those heart qualities,
- reliance on the guidance of their hearts to make the best decision in any situation,
- and a peacefulness that permeates their atmosphere to bring peace to others.
The University of the Heart has the advantage of being based on the teachings of a great sage of the 20th century, Hazrat Inayat Khan, who lived in the West and gave his teaching in English. His personal example is the proof of his method. As his representatives, it is our privilege to offer through the University of the Heart the wisdom of the masters, saints and prophets who form the spiritual government of the world.
If you are enrolled, we look forward to working closely with you over the next two years. If not, we hope you will consider this extraordinary opportunity.
The curriculum of iamU
101: Foundations of Heart Rhythm Meditation
First, we need a strong foundation in the spiritual practice of our time: Heart Rhythm Meditation. This method is important because it gives us a way of self-regulation -- through Heart Rhythm Meditation we can control basic rhythms and physiological parameters like Central Nervous System Activity (CNA), blood pressure, blood pH, heart rate, Heart Rate Variability (HRV), production of stress hormones, immune system triggering, alpha and theta brain-wave creation, and metabolic rate. Controlling the values of these physical parameters has been shown to immediately enhance well-being through emotional awareness, emotional balance, emotional resilience, positive affect, optimism, and enhanced interpersonal relationships.
Unlike earlier meditation methods, Heart Rhythm Meditation enhances the whole human experience; it integrates the soul, heart, mind and body into one coherent self. The harmony this creates within yourself and with others in your life will begin the process of transformation.
Like all of the eight webcourses, this is an experiential workshop conducted online with a certified teacher. It will require 7 to 10 hours a week of reading, meditating and writing. There is a one-hour video conference on the weekend.
102: The Four Types of Spirit: the Four Element Energies
The essence of a spiritual life is the ability to experience Spirit. In the second course, you will feel and summon Spirit in the four ways that Spirit appears: as the four Element energies. As matter is frozen Spirit, the Elements are the building blocks of existence, and all growth comes from their activity. Any situation or relationship that's stuck is one in which some of the Element energies are missing. You will begin to recognize the Elements in people and situations, and by turning on these energies in yourself, you'll be able to tune yourself appropriately. Furthermore, you will practice directing the Elements of Spirit within yourself, consciously and deliberately, to become a powerful agent of change.
But before you wield the power of the Element energies, you need to be in a state of internal harmony -- that was the purpose of the first course, in Heart Rhythm Meditation. Knowing that whatever you wish for could happen, do you dare to intervene in Life's affairs? The power of Spirit is unlimited; it is our limitation as instruments of Spirit that restricts its expression.
103: Energizing Your Heart in Four Dimensions
In the third course, you will start to apply the Element energies by directing them toward your own heart. We will observe your heart's growth in four dimensions -- we can measure the expansion in your heart's magnetic field, and we will see the dimensions of your heart in your Heart Rate Variability. Most importantly, you will notice changes in your attitude and behavior that correspond to the expanding dimensions of your heart.
We want "Living from the Heart" to be practical, helpful and productive. This is not a theoretical state of being; it is verifiable by the changes you create in yourself and those around you. We have seen many examples of fathers, wives and husbands, children and co-workers being changed in ways that express the love, harmony and beauty of their hearts, just by interacting with someone in our program. When you bring Spirit into your heart, the love you experience is also experienced by those around you, almost as strongly as you feel it within yourself. Family systems and organizations change because your heart's energy is greater and more available.
104: Healing Your Emotional/Energetic Heart
In the fourth course, you'll go farther in developing your heart by applying the Element energies to healing the old wounds in your emotional/energetic heart. These wounds can be of four different kinds. Some wounds leak energy, leaving you drained emotionally. Other wounds make you numb, or highly reactive, or risk-averse. For each kind of wound, there is a specific way of directing the Element energies to your healing.
We have had many therapists go through this course and experience a healing of their past that they hadn't felt before, a healing that results in the ultimate form of forgiveness and resolution: gratitude for all your disappointments, setbacks, and even traumas. Everything you've experienced has been a preparation for accomplishing the purpose of your life.
Many people feel that they've healed their hearts already, that they have no unfinished business. But we're looking for an extraordinary level of heart purity such that there is no person you avoid, no situation you fear, and no pessimism corrupting your self-image. Your heart is the energy source for your whole being, so before we strengthen the other energy centers in your body, called chakras, your heart needs to be operating like a lamp, able to radiate and energize your other chakras.
A specialty of iamHeart is the practice of sharing another's heart. We teach, and you will practice, a specific method to experience within yourself what another person experiences in their heart, mind and body. It's not projection, or imagining what someone feels; you actually take on a different identity and feel the other person's energy and consciousness as your own.
We begin this practice in the fourth course and continue it in the Residency at the end of the first year. We call this "Contemplation", and we will continue to develop the practice throughout the second year. Contemplation brings a level of understanding of others that is truly profound, and it also allows you to meditate for another, where the benefit of the Element energies falls upon the person you contemplate.
105: Tuning and Strengthening the Energetic Centers
The fifth course, in the beginning of the second year of the university program, is an experience of the seven centers (chakras) in the energetic body. The ancient chakra system has been updated by mystics over the past thousand years and is now verifiable by scientific instruments. We teach the updated system that places the golden sun in the heart, and pairs each chakra with its complementary chakra.
You will learn practices of breath and sound that activate each chakra by causing physical and energetic vibration in the appropriate point in the body. The use of vocalized sound is another specialty of iamHeart, and this method of chanting is introduced in the fifth course. A singing voice is not required -- you will use the physical resonance of your heart as biofeedback, along with audio instruments, to tune your sound to invoke spiritual qualities. The spiritual sounds we use are like keys that operate the physical universe. You will be amazed at how effectively you can change your emotional/energetic state by tuning yourself with sound. This is way beyond self-regulation; this is self-creation.
Through the development of the chakras, an individual gains access to the mystical powers of insight and influence. With practice, you will gain an extraordinary energetic capacity and learn to apply your confidence, joy, courage, sensitivity, empathy, communication skill, intuition and connection to the hearts of others.
106: Accomplishing Your Heart's Desire
Now with the tools of the Heart Rhythm Meditation, the Elements, a purified and energized heart, and the ability to operate the seven chakras, course six applies all this to the accomplishment of a goal that's important to you. The course shows how to choose a goal that is attainable and worthwhile, using the guidance of your heart, and then, how to accomplish your goal by spiritual means.
The methods of manifestation of the great masters are shared here and put into practice on your own goal. Certainly, the power of intention is used in this process of manifestation, but it is only one of the six Basic Powers we apply. It would not be possible to operate reality as effectively without the mastery of the energetic fields that you have built up by this point.
We are preparing ourselves to be effective instruments for the work of the divine Spirit, as we feel its guidance in our hearts. From a deep state of meditation, we can intervene in the flow of energy throughout the scope of our consciousness. Your intervention, with the experience gained here, can improve your health, deepen your relationships, and bring success to your endeavors.
107: The Planes of Reality, the Life Before and After
The seventh course explores the unseen universe beyond the levels of individuality. The four levels of an individual are the soul, heart, mind and body. Beyond these four are the three levels of the Universal Heart, the Universal Soul and the Absolute. All seven levels constitute your Self. Our aim is to integrate and operate all these levels as we pursue the purpose of our lives.
Using the advanced meditations that are given here, you will learn to navigate in the invisible space-time of universal consciousness. The teachings and methods of the great mystics about the nature of reality will trigger a memory of the time before life and a preview of the time to come. You have entered the university of the Heart to find the Truth, and you will be rewarded with the experience of your True Self.
108: The Culture of the Heart
The last course is about helping to transform the culture from mind-based to heart-centered. As we are each co-creators of the manifested world, our effect on the life around us can be powerful and profound. Our aim is to reconstruct the physical world in accordance with the template of its design in the spiritual world. The vehicle for this transformation is the human heart; as people center themselves in their hearts, they transform their lives, with the effects radiating into the hearts of others.
Two Group Retreats
One Group Retreat a year can be chosen from the four retreats that are offered each year, in Tucson, Arizona, Santa Barbara, California, New York, and in the U.K. All of these retreats are led by Susanna and Puran Bair and other iamHeart teachers. The Group Retreat is five days of living, studying and meditating together in a loving community of 30 to 60 people. The Group Retreats are also open to the public.
The Group Retreats are used to immerse ourselves in experiences that are better conveyed in person rather than through the online webcourses. For example, here we practice the Twelve Archetypes the Sounds of the Heart, and Contemplation of another.
We look for the One Being in ourselves and in others, and we find the divinity we seek in the human heart. To be more specific about the greatness we experience in people's hearts, we have a system of twelve archetypes, based on the four Elements. We can recognize these archetypes by non-rational means, for example in a person's walk or response to types of sound. This has very practical applications -- by seeing the archetypes in others, a teacher is able to adjust to their student, a salesman is able to satisfy the needs of his customers, and a partner is able to find harmony in a relationship.
By knowing your own archetype, you can select the path of personal development that will work best for you. You will be able to appreciate that particular type of greatness that you have developed in your heart, and bring out that which is still hidden.
The archetypes are taught experientially, in one of the group retreats that are included in the university program.
The 7-Day Private Retreat
The Private Retreat offers the opportunity to go deeply into meditation and explore the heights and depths of the self. A certified retreat guide conducts the retreat and gives instructions in the morning and evening. The retreat follows a schedule of different practices from 3 AM to 9 PM.
The retreat is designed to lead one through the nine stages of spiritual development, which the retreatant will experience consciously or unconsciously. This is the way to experience the inner world, and its reflection on the outer world, as a mystic experiences the reality of matter, light and vibration.
Private Retreats are offered at seven locations around the US and UK, in the home of an iamHeart Retreat Guide.
Mentoring is conducted over Skype in one-hour sessions. The certified Mentor knows the iamU curriculum of personal and spiritual development and can help the student individualize the program to his or her needs.
The Residencies are held in a retreat center in Tucson, in August. They are not open to the public; they are attended by the founders, teachers, and mentors of iamHeart, the graduating class and the next-year's class, and it is the first iamU meeting for the new students. This is a community of approximately 100 people.
In the Residencies, we review the material of the last four webcourses, and practice applying the meditations to each other. We also experiement with tests of the skills of the mystics, like being able to regulate the metabolic rate and circulation patterns, distinguish poison from food by meditation, change the pH of water, and demonstrate coherent Heart Rate Variability.
The graduation ceremony and gala celebration occur at the end of each Residency Program.