As we undo this false self concept through forgiveness and Christ Vision, we lift the heavy veil that hides the light of our shared Holy Self. This changeless, eternal Self is pure light and it knows of no sin, guilt or fear, no darkness, no pain, no conflict, no loss, and no adversity. It is God’s immaculate Will. As the light within is released we begin to see others, the body, the world and our past in this light. Suddenly, instead of interpreting them through the dark lens of the separated self, we discover the sparkling miracles that were always there, but which were hidden by our unforgiven guilt.
As the small self concept dissolves – which is accelerated by Holy Relationship – this light within radiates increasingly so that we begin to see others and the world in this light. The light we are literally unites with and reveals the stunning light in others. This is the same divine light that Jesus refers to in the Course as the Great Rays.
When two or more companions join with Holy Spirit in one truly common goal of Holy Relationship, they accept the undoing of the greatest block to Love, which is the false self concept and its destructive purpose for the body.
In my own experience of Holy Relationship, the individual “me” that previously sought its completion from others, the body and the world, has faded into the background. And what has come forth to take its place is almost indescribable because it’s an experience of a Love that is not of this world; a changeless Love that cannot be threatened.
The ego’s dark veil of terror has been lifted. The light of Love that shimmers within everyone and everything is being witnessed and felt deeply as I refuse to believe the false self’s illusory witnesses to darkness in whatever form. What exactly happened?
There has been a comprehensive shift due to my ongoing Holy Relationships with my Holy companions. In my live-in relationship with Daniel we regularly experience what I can only describe as quantum episodes of light. These are not physical in nature, nor are they seen or felt through the body’s five senses. As a matter of fact, they eclipse the body entirely.
Daniel, I and Coreen are having more frequent experiences of the Great Rays, which really defy explanation. Words, as symbols of symbols, can portray only a one-dimensional interpretation here. Yet it’s a start. In our genuine, joint Holy Instants with each other, the holographic sense or experience of these Rays is felt at the core of our being and simultaneously radiating outward. It really is all inclusive. Being all embracing, this is a truly blessed state, a Holy Encounter that the ego has never even imagined, let alone felt.
Union with another through the Great Rays evokes the most overwhelming experience of unprecedented Love. A tsunami of gratitude and humility, this Love is so enormous and multi-faceted that it feels as if we can’t even contain it. I would liken it to a divine G-force, as God Power. Some limited definitions of this might include: all consuming, awe-inspiring, all encompassing, breathtaking and wondrous, all at the same time.
“In the holy instant, where the Great Rays replace the body in awareness, the recognition of relationships without limits is given you. But in order to see this, it is necessary to give up every use the ego has for the body, and to accept the fact that the ego has no purpose you would share with it.” T-15.IX.3:1-2
The Contrast of Human Love
In extreme contrast, the version of worldly love the false self seeks is self-centered, sacrificial, exclusive and special. Unfortunately, it is so extremely limited and body-centered that most people could hardly imagine Loving each other without the body. The body, what it does or doesn’t do, what it offers or rejects, seems to circumscribe – or rather imprison – those engaging in this form of relationship. In addition to this mistaken perception of the body and its purpose in relationship, is the erroneous belief that we each have private minds with independent, personal agendas that can indeed clash with other private minds. The outcome of this belief is conflict and can even result in the termination of the relationship.
While we still believe we have a personal, private mind and that the body defines us, and we have not yet experienced the blinding contrast of tear-filled grace within true Holy Communion in a joint Holy Instant with another, then the ego often offers its cheap “substitute” for this true joining, in the form of sex; in particular, sexual orgasm. The ego would have us believe that this physical phenomenon is the pinnacle, the highest and most valuable joining we can have with another here in the dream. Yet when compared to a true, joint Holy Instant without the body’s interference, orgasm is then recognized as a fraudulent “substitute,” a severe limitation of the genuine Soul union, and changeless intimacy that is our God-given inheritance.
While sex is not wrong in itself, like all other body appetites, the real question is “what is it for?” In other words, is it being used to help to heal? Or is it lust driven, which serves to increase fantasies of body identification, together with escalating the ego’s guilt and self-attack?
When we believe erroneously that we are the body, the changeless Love we actually are as the Holy Self, is seen as a threat. This translates to fear of Love and thus fear of the pure miracle impulse, which looks entirely past the body altogether, centering on the light we share equally with others. When we allow this light, it is often experienced as genuine emotional vulnerability and transparency, where the ego’s mask of fear is fully removed.
Conversely, when the pure heart-centered miracle impulse is first encountered by the ego – as the divine desire to merge with another in mutual reverence – it often distorts it and then misdirects it. Instead of extending itself infinitely for healing, as a universal, unselfish, impersonal miracle impulse, it is diverted toward the illusory body converting it into a sexual impulse, or sexual attraction, which seeks a physical outcome in the orgasm.
Thus the pure miracle impulse is curtailed by seeking self-gratification through the body instead of being extended, and thus shared selflessly from the heart as the profound expression of shared gratitude, intimacy and healing that it is. Instead of being accepted and extended limitlessly as Love, through the true intimacy of our heart center, it gets derailed, through the body, as sexual attraction. And Love is then replaced with lust (fear).
This is what occurs when the ego “falls in love;” special love that is. Romance is the world’s idealized model of special “love.” The ego’s exclusive, romantic love is an intoxicating and highly addictive substitute for the Love of God.
Two people engaged in satisfying ego desires attempt to superimpose an image of what the ego prefers over their treasured and changeless reality. The false self only wants the image or mask, and not the true gift of shared light which is the only reality of the person it claims to love. As the ego prioritizes separation over true union, the body is then mistakenly sexualized, bringing to the relationship a very fragile, and pseudo intimacy.
This is what Jesus meant in His earlier message about sex within the Course’s Urtext:
“If the identification is with the body, consciousness may distort superconscious impulses by denying their source and seeking their impact in the orgasm. This is the result of ‘mistaken identity.’” The COA Annotated Edition, T-1.28.3:1-2
Sexual attraction’s purpose is to hide and divert the pure miracle impulse. In this, it makes the body the object of its pleasure and yet all real pleasure arises exclusively from doing God’s Will. And that is why when we’re tempted by sexual desire, Jesus encourages us to ask Him to help to transmute the misdirected miracle impulse (sexual attraction) so it can then be extended as unimpeded healing:
“In a situation where you or another person, or both, experience inappropriate sex impulses, KNOW FIRST that this is an expression of fear. Your love toward each other is NOT perfect, and this is why the fear arose. Turn immediately to me by denying the power of the fear, and ask me to help you to replace it with love. This shifts the sexual impulse immediately to the miracle-impulse, and places it at MY disposal.” ACIM Urtext, Ch.1.
NOTE: For more on the three phases of healing in sexual relationships, refer to the chapter titled ‘Sex and Transorgasmic Union’ in ‘A Manual for Holy Relationship.’
A Union of Mutual Reverence Becomes the Will of God
As we progress in Holy Relationship by desiring only true union, in place of separation via bodies and private minds, we experience the pure, undistorted miracle impulse more and more. It is the natural extension of the Great Rays within us, but was previously blocked by the ego’s misidentification as a body. The impersonal, unselfish, all-inclusive miracle impulse is meant to be extended unimpeded, from the light within us to others. One of the most magnificent experiences of the miracle impulse is through sharing it with others in a joint Holy Instant. This sharing brings about a quantum healing of the split mind, our misidentification as a body instead of as Spirit.
When our minds unite in mutual reverence and we enter a joint Holy Instant, an overwhelming fusion of light occurs that is felt as breathtaking gratitude. This eruption of extraordinary grace is the Love we are, extended and received simultaneously. And in this blessed moment of union, the ego ceases to exist.
Human love is not Love, but fear in disguise. It exists as ego’s substitute for perfect Love, and tries to prove that love can change and end, that people can be betrayed and abandoned, and that love can hurt. All of this is sustained by the ego, in endless attempts to hurl its own submerged guilt outward onto others, in frantic efforts to prove that it can be unfairly treated by others and that the separation is real. The bottom line is that very few people recognize the solitary underlying problem – the ego’s essential need for guilt, which judgment and blame bring. Without guilt, the illusion of separation would cease to exist.
The Holy Relationship’s purpose is to eliminate this crushing burden of guilt and fear. Fear and guilt are the ego’s greatest defenses against its most formidable opponent – the memory of God’s Love, as our one, unified Holy Self. The Love of God cannot be known consistently except through our brothers and is ultimately refined in the experience of Holy Relationship. The Love of God, and thus our own healing, is experienced and embraced in direct proportion to our desire to see our brothers and our self as sinless, blameless, and innocent.
Due to our mutual purpose of forgiveness, the Holy Relationship becomes a sanctuary of innocence and tenderness; a safe zone in which we can share our deepest fears and highest joys. In the Holy Instants we share with our companion(s) we close the gap and give up our sense of unworthiness. Into this most sacred relationship, the Love of God is remembered and graciously shared. Here, we gladly return to innocence, as one.
When companions join in one purpose with Holy Spirit, they effect quantum healing which ripples outward ceaselessly. We have no idea how far reaching this union can extend, even to people we don’t even know. For example, Coreen and I communicate wordlessly much of the time and so do Daniel and I. There have been truly incredible synchronicities. For example, Coreen and I dreamed the same dream on the same night, which inspired a significant healing for her and for me. All three of us spend time in wordless communication (no phone, computer, etc.) and yet we each “know” the other’s state of being, as well as what the other may be . Furthermore, because the Holy Relationship is the reflection of perfect Love in the dream, it necessarily calls every receptive heart in its vicinity to come to it and be healed.
In the advanced Holy Relationship, all ideas, beliefs and values become generalized into one common undivided goal and function. These partners no longer seek completion through the body or from the world. They do not compartmentalize their beliefs or values. They recognize gratefully that all their needs are met by Holy Spirit, because their will is one with His. This unified devotion they share lavishly, bestows on them extraordinary gifts that far surpass anything the world could give or has ever imagined.
As we begin to experience true union within Holy Relationship, we discover that our partner’s “good” is literally our own good, and that their call for Love is really our own. Further, we learn that as we supply the Love (forgiveness) our companion calls for, we receive it too. Any sense of separation is completely erased and union is no longer just a term, but a profoundly felt experience.
When two or more people join in healing specialness, each can invoke the miracle and accept the Atonement on behalf of the other. In this case, joined in one truly common purpose with Holy Spirit, one companion cannot experience the miracle without the other also experiencing it. Even though we may appear to be temporarily lost, our brother or sister holds the miracle in trust for us until we are willing to accept it for ourselves. And then overflowing gratitude for our companion envelops us both in its shimmering grace.
The Holy Relationship is the majestic light that erases the black abyss of guilt and fear. In its radiance, the guilt and treacherous unworthiness of the false self simply evaporates. In our brother’s gentle eyes, the Vision of Christ unveils the innocent and sovereign Child of God we are. In a joint agreement not to be buried in each other’s stories and history, we unite in present gratitude for each other and so we learn to see one another as we are now, unencumbered by the ego’s past.
“This holy relationship, lovely in its innocence, mighty in strength, and blazing with a light far brighter than the sun that lights the sky you see, is chosen of your Father as a means for His Own plan.” … “This holy relationship has the power to heal all pain, regardless of its form. Neither you nor your brother alone can serve at all. Only in your joint will does healing lie. For here your healing is, and here will you accept Atonement. And in your healing is the Sonship healed [because] your will and your brother’s are joined.” T-22.VI.4:1,4-8
While we still believe in and experience suffering, then the one who struggles is the false self, as an identity apart from Love (God), with a self-appointed personal “will,” apart from God. It literally surrounds itself with a self-projected shield of fear to defend itself from true union, and thus from its single enemy – Love, as our Holy Self. Because it is terrified of the Love of God, it is also terrified of closing the gap between our brother and our self. This all-embracing forgiveness, of which it is terrified, would heal the split mind completely.
The imaginary gap of unforgiveness between our brother and our self is the fear of God.
This unforgiven gap represents the ego’s shield of fear which seems to hold every conceivable form of pain, loss and suffering safely in place. The ego’s dream of time, birth and death exist only in this imagined gap. And all it takes to collapse that gap entirely and undo our fear of God at a quantum level …is to close it completely, with at least one other Son of God. In the Holy Relationship lies the utterly profound and unquantifiable healing of the entire dream of separation.
When two or more unite in advanced Holy Relationship to close the gap of separation, their will becomes one with God’s. From here, the healed and unified Mind of Christ is set aflame throughout the sleeping Sonship, as the Great Rays joyously illuminate all that was previously seen through darkness.
“Before a holy relationship there is no sin. The form of error is no longer seen, and reason, joined with love, looks quietly on all confusion, observing merely, “This was a mistake.” And then the same Atonement you accepted in your relationship corrects the error, and lays a part of Heaven in its place.” … “Each part of Heaven that you bring is given you.”
“When you have looked upon your brother with complete forgiveness, from which no error is excluded and nothing kept hidden, what mistake can there be anywhere you cannot overlook? What form of suffering could block your sight, preventing you from seeing past it? And what illusion could there be you will not recognize as a mistake; a shadow through which you walk completely undismayed? God would let nothing interfere with those whose wills are His, and they will recognize their wills are His, [because] they serve His Will. And serve it willingly. And could remembrance of what they are be long delayed?”
“You will see your value through your brother’s eyes, and each one is released as he beholds his savior in place of the attacker who he thought was there. Through this releasing is the world released. This is your part in bringing peace. For you have asked what is your function here, and have been answered.” T-22.VI.5:1-3,5,7.8:1-4