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We’re really at an important juncture in the teaching in A Course In Miracles, because you’re beginning to grasp (because I’m sharing it with you) the fact that special relationships aren’t between persons. That special relationships lie between the multi-leveled complex structures of definitions that have been concocted by those who are not in touch with who they Are or their Source and, as a result, are being governed by the chaos that comes from operating out of ignorance.
Why is this important?
It’s important because if you’re going to work on special relationships, you don’t want to miss the point by working on each other. You see?
“Oh-h, let’s work on our special relationship. Oh-h, let’s develop a holy relationship. And we can point out to each other where the flaws are in our special relationship … we don’t want to have a special relationship.”
And you see, it seems like because there’s dialogue going on and there’s involvement going on between you and whoever it is you’re going to work with to get rid of your special relationships, that you’re doing something, when you’re simply bumbling around still within the special relationship and absolutely nothing is happening to free you from it.
The reason is, you’re working on the wrong thing. You see?
Many individuals have spent a number of years working on their special relationship and translating it into a holy relationship and all the time they’re doing it with each other. I mean by that, that they are finessing each other, they are manipulating each other according to their best current concepts of what constitutes a holy relationship. But you see, the best current concepts of a holy relationship are still definitions or meanings that have been concocted by those who are not in touch with their Source and who are unaware of who and what they truly Are. You see?
It’s time for the delay caused by working on the wrong things to be abandoned. And the way they are abandoned is by engaging in what works.
And so if you want to work on special relationships, stop letting your partner—stop letting the other or others that you are in relationships with—stop letting them be the focus of your attention. You see?
What will get you out of the effects of special relationships is to abandon what causes them. And what causes them are definitions and meanings that you have given to everything that stand opaquely in the way of your discerning what is really there covered over by the definition and meaning you’ve applied to it.
It’s an inside job because the special relationships are a head-trip.
Now you have negative affects in your relationships with others as a result of behaving on the basis of ignorance rather than a Real connection with each other. And so it does seem as though you or the other one are causing the problems. And that’s why you need to work on each other. It’s very misleading.
So, if you want to work on abandoning the special relationships—I’m going to say, the uncomfortable, impractical unfulfilling relationships—you’re having with others, you’ve got to back off from them and go within.
Now don’t go within and start examining things and analyzing them, because this will still be a private process. It will not be a process in which union is occurring, or reunion is occurring. It is not the result of the two-step, where you abandon your isolation and you say, “Father what is the truth here?” or “Holy Spirit, what is the truth here? That which is nothing more than my right Mind, what is the truth here?” You see? That’s when you break the isolation. That’s when you abandon the arena in which all of the definitions were developed and in which agreements with others to abide by them occurred.
In that abandonment of your privacy, your separation, not from your Brothers and Sisters, but from your Source—from your Father—in that abandonment you experience the holy instant. And you’re in a position where you experience the influx of the Father’s Perspective, which is your true perspective.
From that new connected unified vantage point, you will relate to your Brothers and Sisters in a way that is free of the special relationship. You will relate to your Brothers and Sisters in the context of the holy relationship. But it won’t be a holy relationship that is fulfilling concepts or definitions you think define a holy relationship.
The holy relationship will be the result of your Knowing the truth right in your inter-actions with your Brothers and Sisters, and in fact, with all Creation which you are in relationship with.
Now, do you realize that since this is the case, there is nothing … there is literally nothing that stands in the way of your Waking up. You don’t have to wait for your Brother or Sister to do anything. They don’t have to change. You can at any moment say, “Father, speak to me … Holy Spirit speak to me … any one of the Awakened Brothers, speak to me” and you can make the connection. You can experience the union as a living conscious experience. You see?
And your Brother won’t have had to change. And you won’t have had to try to change your Brother. All you will have needed to do is go within and abandon your aloneness. That brings you into the conscious experience of God’s laws prevailing, of God’s Perspective being the uninterruptible conscious experience you are having.
And it’s like pushing the first domino in a long line of dominoes … and you didn’t even touch a domino. You just stopped doing what held the dominoes up. You were willing to abandon your best judgments, your pet peeves, your greatest habitual fears, your personal private unique style of playing “poor me” because all orphans play “poor me.”
If you’re not Awake, you’re playing “poor me”—one way or another. If you weren’t playing “poor me,” you would Wake up and find yourself experiencing the fullness of Being empowered, you might say, to exist without fear ever again … you see? . . without ever feeling poor, without ever having to manipulate others by playing “poor me.”
So this holy instant that we’ve been talking about which is the means of abandoning the special relationships, is the bottom line important topic, subject, practice—whatever you want to call it—that the Course teaches.
Let’s go into the Book and I am going to back up one sentence from what I announced:
You see the world you VALUE.1
You value playing, “poor me.” You see the world through the eyes of a “poor me.” And you play all the games that a poor orphan plays. And you play those games with gusto! And you hold others to playing those games with gusto. And you require everyone that you have special agreements with to abide by them and not violate them. And you’re constantly busy manipulating others or being afraid of them.
That’s the miserable state of existence of an orphan … of a “poor me” … of one who has forgotten who he Is … doesn’t realize he’s part of a family, a divine family which has absolute cohesiveness—every part with every other part. All of the details, all of the miniscule awesome aspects of Creation, they constitute a family that every one of you are inseparable from.
You see the world you VALUE.
Now, do you value the truth? As we discussed last week, are you willing to abandon everything else and go for the truth because the truth means more to you than anything else? Well, not so far.
But it’s time for that shift to occur. It’s time for commitment to that to occur. It’s time for you to decide that it’s more meaningful to inquire as to what the truth is and bring your full attention to the answer to it that will be forthcoming because you are desiring it and the Father withholds nothing of what He is from His Creation.
You need to simply become willing to do that instead of anything else. It’s a simple thing. But you’re addicted to thinking fearful thoughts. You’re addicted to that which produces anxiety. You’re addicted to that which gives an emotional high while you’re unconscious. You see?
On this side of the bridge, you see the world of separate bodies, seeking to join each other in separate unions…
… in other words, “poor little separated me wants to join with poor little separated you, and us two poor little separated entities can join together in a bond that makes us one.” You see? Sounds good, but not the way I said it. But the way you perceive it and the way you approach it sounds good … and the promise you have imagined is there, makes it seem worthwhile going for. But …
On this side of the bridge, you see the world of separate bodies, seeking to join each other in separate unions, and to become one by losing …
… losing how? Losing by still not remembering who you Are and still not joining with your Source that would uncover to you your already existing wholeness and divinity that doesn’t need to be arrived at through any process engaged in by “two little poor orphans.”
When TWO individuals seek to become one, they are trying to DECREASE their magnitude.
How? You decrease your magnitude by magnifying your tininess: “Poor little me joining with poor little you … you know … us two poor little things are gonna make something of ourselves out of tininess …” But with great hope and great faith and great trust and great willingness that really amounts to willfulness to accomplish what can’t be accomplished.
So, putting all that effort into making incompleteness more complete by joining it with more incompleteness is insane and useless.
When TWO individuals seek to become one, they are trying to DECREASE their magnitude. Each would deny his power…
… you see … the power of the Presence of God that constitutes them.
Each would deny his power, for the SEPARATE union excludes the universe.
“Poor little me over here and the big universe over there … poor little me over here gonna join poor little you over there …” You see? “… and we’ll stand up to the whole world if we have to!” You see? No unity. It excludes the universe.
Far more is left outside than would be taken in. For God is left without…
… outside. You know? “Father, I’d rather do it my way. Father, I’d rather define things myself.” So …
… God is left without and NOTHING taken in, …
… at least not yet. Littleness, trying to join with littleness and make littleness a better experience. No interest in or attempt to abandon littleness.
If ONE such union were made …
… here’s the key words …
… in perfect faith, the universe WOULD enter into it. Yet the special relationship which the ego seeks does not include even one whole individual.
You see? That’s why you can’t work on each other. That’s why the special relationship isn’t between individuals. You see?
But when you hesitate and do the two-step and enter into the holy instant and desire to know the truth and it’s revealed to you, your wholeness is revealed to you, the Presence of God is experienced in you as You. And you’re not at all confused. You don’t suddenly think, “Oh, little me is God!” No. It’s like, “Oh, God is all there is of me … the awesomeness and allness of God, wow! …constitutes the wholeness of me. Man, I’m happy to defer to the awareness that God is all that is here Being all that is here … where I used to say, “It was just poor little me joining with poor little you …” You see?
Yet the special relationship which the ego seeks does not include even one whole individual. For the ego wants but PART of him, and sees ONLY this part and nothing else.
You see? What’s the part of him that the ego wants to see? It’s the part that has nothing to do with God. It’s the part that seems to be an independent agent, fully empowered to become something on his or her own in his or her own right. You see? That’s the part.
“Oh, don’t talk to me about my being connected to God, don’t talk about yourself being connected with God … don’t give me any of that holy shit! That doesn’t fit, that’s not practical … that isn’t going to help me become a success in the world.”
… God is left without and NOTHING taken in, …
[For] the ego wants but PART of him, and sees ONLY this part and nothing else.
Now, we’ve just talked about what it’s like on this side of the bridge. And you could say, that the bridge is your decision to get a divorce from the Father, or your decision to attempt to exist in your own right all by yourself. You see, that’s what’s being abandoned here.
Across the bridge, it is so different! For a time the body is still seen, but not exclusively, as it is seen here.
Meaning, as you see it now when you experience no union—no actual union with God—on any kind of an ongoing basis. You may have had momentary glimpses that remain with you that do not ever leave you feeling actually totally isolated as you had thought you were before the experience. And the experience will never leave you feeling unconscious of your divinity, or of the fact that God’s Love embraces you unconditionally.
For a time the body is still seen, but not exclusively…
… meaning, not absolutely separated off from everything else, being unlike everything else, being itself in its own right. You see?
For a time the body is still seen, but not exclusively, as it is seen here.
When you have the experience, the insight, the revelation of the Presence of God right where you are, or right where any object is in your experience, as I said last week, God appears. It’s clear to you that what’s there is God in all the fullness of the Meaning that embodies and expresses God fully. And what you thought it was escapes your mind, the definitions you had given it that were so limited and which were as fearsome as the fear with which you looked at it disappears because you’re having a new experience of it. You are not having an experience of it disappearing, of it vanishing, but the small minded way in which you had been experiencing it does vanish—subsumed by and fully infinitely expressive of all the wholeness and fullness of God, no matter how small it seems to be. It’s whole and it’s also inseparable from you. It’s part of you and you are part of it because Creation is One even though it is infinite in expression.
For a time the body is still seen…
… for a time you can still see what you had been defining it as. For awhile it still has an afterimage, you might say, of the overlay that you had applied to it—or that you had applied to something else. The overlay you had applied to it and perhaps the way you had felt about it will still linger as it fades. But what you’re looking at with the new experience is what you had been looking at but now seen not through a glass darkly, with the scales having fallen from your eyes.
For a time the body is still seen, but not exclusively, as it is seen here.
… or now.
For the little spark which holds the great rays within it is ALSO visible, and this spark cannot be limited long to littleness.
The experience of God there cannot long remain without completely devaluing the definitions you had been using and applying to it. You see?
Once you have crossed the bridge…
… once you’ve engaged in the holy instant, once you’ve said, “Father, what is the truth here? . . ”
… the value of the body …
… the definitions and meanings you had applied to it …
… is so diminished in your sight, that you will see no need at all to …
… to magnify it.
… to make something out of it …to make it better, bigger, greater, more effective, stronger, a better agent for manipulation and control. You will see no need to magnify it. It simply isn’t there for that reason, or those reasons, even though you had used it for those reasons.
For you will realize that the only value which the body has …
… as a separate thing, as an isolated thing amongst other isolated things, which it never has been …
… you will realize that the only value which the body has is to enable you to bring your brothers to the bridge WITH you, and to be released TOGETHER there.
Okay, what does that mean? It means that the only value the body can have … no, the only value the definitions of the body can have—the definitions you’ve made up and everyone else has made up about it—is to provide a point of connection with another at the moment when you are experiencing the holy instant, so that in that experience and the spontaneous expression of truth that you are experiencing can be communicated, so that the very thing that I’m doing right now can occur.
And the fact that there are not individuals or persons engaged in special relationships can register. And you can see that the special relationships are, as I am saying, nothing more than complex arrangements of meanings and definitions that you’ve made up and agreed to abide by.
That can be popped like a bubble!
And the two of you can enjoy the result of having done what works … abandoning the inner intent to believe in and operate according to made up definitions and meanings in favor of going into the Living moment of union with the Father, in which in that moment you are experiencing, I’m going to say, the current Perspective of the Father, the current awareness of the current divinity of all of Creation. You see? But you must be willing to get out of linear processes and let yourself into the Movement of Being in its spontaneity. You must be willing to abandon control so you can participate in the Movement of Creation in which everything that happens is a surprise.
The bridge itself …
… here’s the key.
The bridge itself is nothing more than a transition in your perspective of reality.
… a transition in your perspective …
… you already are the Sons and Daughters of God. You already are the incredible Presence of God. You already are divine. You already are incapable of sin, disease and death and everything that seems to accompany them.
And what you divinely Are is present at each moment as long as time seems to be in play, at each moment to be perceived as instantaneous healing, instantaneous transformation of everything you’re in relationship with, whether it’s what you call the body or a table or a glass or a nose or a tree. And suddenly God will appear and you’ll understand what a tree Is, and you will understand what your Brother Is. And you will feel the true meaning of God right there in those things that you had poorly defined as the effect of Godlessness—the effect of the absence of God.
The bridge itself is nothing more than a transition in your perspective of reality. On this side, everything you see is grossly distorted and completely out of perspective.
You don’t think it is because you think it’s normal to be born, to grow up, to have problems, to experience diseases and hopefully survive them and ultimately to begin to get old and die. You don’t think that’s completely out of perspective because you think that’s the way it is. And I’m telling you it’s not. That’s not the way it is. There is an alternative. There is an absolute truth that is the nonexistence of this “out of perspective vision” you’re all suffering from. And you need to stop blindly, ignorantly accepting the status-quo. That’s what the holy instant is for. It’s your means of stepping out of ignorance, truly … really changing, experiencing transformation. It’s that simple.
What is little and insignificant is magnified…
… on this side of the bridge …
… and what is strong and powerful cut down to littleness.
What can you expect when you’ve abandoned the infinite of your Being by saying, “Father, I want a divorce … I am going to become an orphan?”
In the transition …
… as you do the two-step, as you make the connection, as you experience union and your vision is transformed and what is of value to you begins to change …
… there is a period of confusion, in which a sense of actual disorientation seems to occur.
It’s important to understand because otherwise you’re likely to think that something is going wrong and you will stop saying, “Father, what is the truth here?”
But fear it not, for it means nothing more than that you have been willing to let go your hold on the distorted frame of reference which seemed to hold your world together.
The only reason you hold on to your mutually agreed upon definitions is because they were developed for the purpose of freeing yourself from chance, freeing yourself from being the victim of unwanted change. You see?
And so it …
… seemed to hold your world together.
And as you stop doing these things that give you control by saying, “Father, aside from my being in control, aside from everything I’ve been doing, aside from everything I’ve believed, what is the truth here? Not just intellectually, ‘What is the truth here?’ …but as an experience, ‘What is the truth here?’” And as you abandon your control willingly and let something else in, you do feel some disorientation and insecurity.
But the question is: Do you value truth? Do you value Reality more than everything you’ve been experiencing? If you do you will persist. If you do you will persist.
This frame of reference …
… the one that seemed to hold your world together …
… is built around the special relationship. WITHOUT this illusion, there can BE no meaning you would still seek here.
Fear not that you will be abruptly lifted up and hurled into reality. Time is kind, and if you use if FOR reality, it will keep gentle pace with you in your transition. The urgency is only in dislodging your minds from their fixed position here. This will not leave you homeless, and without a frame of reference.
The period of disorientation, which precedes the actual transition, is far shorter than the time it took to fix your minds so firmly on illusions. Delay will hurt you now more than before, only because you realize it IS delay, and that escape from pain is really possible.
You know, as this transition occurs it will seem to you as though the leash is getting shorter, the time between your doing something that doesn’t work and the [snaps fingers] effects of it not working will seem to be quicker, shorter. You will not seem to be able to do what is impractical for a long period of time before you’re brought up short.
And so, in some ways it seems unfair. And others are still being able to do stupid things and you are not. But that’s because [chuckling] you’re realizing at some level that the truth is available to you and that you’re experiencing it and that it’s more available to you than ever before because you’re not resisting it as much, and therefore, it’s pouring in on you.
What you truly want is actually happening.
You know what? Hang in there. Persist … because it’s the way it works. It’s the way Waking up feels and seems to be.
Now this coming week, I want you to read over what we’ve talked about tonight. It’s not discouraging. And you need to be reminded of the simplicity of this.
You will have feelings of disorientation that don’t feel simple. But when you let go of what you thought gave you balance and you let yourself lean into that which is your balance, there is going to be some fear—what you would call a lack of equilibrium. It’s natural. And it’s good. It’s good for you to be losing the faith you have in that which never really gave you balance, as you lean into that which is your balance because of Who and What you Are.
If these things seem to be hard to look at or not particularly inspiring or as though they are in some way hard work, don’t shy away from it, because you deserve to be freed from what hasn’t been fulfilling you.
I love you all and I look forward to being with you next week.
The fact is that we are at a point in the teaching where giant strides can occur, where great release from false bondage can be escaped from … can be experienced. Let there be anticipation. Let there be expectancy. And let there be a willingness to rejoice!
T16.6 The Bridge to the Real World ↩
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