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Sex and Spirituality: Do They Go Together?
Sex and Spirituality: Do they go together? Now THAT is a topic that is sure to gather lots of attention. I have been asked to share my thoughts on the topic, and have taken the request to prayer. Here are some of the thoughts that have come to mind.
The spiritual journey is voluntary if it is authentic. Everything that is real is experienced through acceptance, and everything that temporarily appears to be real is experienced through desire and belief until Awakening. The Spirit is Eternal, a State of desireless Being, and the linear time-space cosmos spins with desire. The aim of spirituality is to experience the Changeless Being of Spirit, and this aim involves dissolving the belief in sacrifice. It cannot be a real sacrifice to accept Reality, but the process of Awakening seems to reflect the belief in sacrifice until Awakening.
Sexuality is one among many experiences on the linear continuum of maya or illusion. It is no better or worse than any other experience on the continuum, though it can seem to be lifted up and glorified or put down and regarded as shameful by the ego. The desire for receiving and giving sexual love to a partner is a sign ego beliefs and desires are still active. Yet It is possible and helpful to allow a committed relationship to be used by the Spirit to raise these beliefs and desires to the Light within, and with willingness these beliefs and desires will vanish and leave the mind at peace.
Trials and struggles in relationships expose falsity in the mind and this will help in making the ultimate decision which opens the heart to the remembrance of God´s Love. The mind will naturally outgrow body thoughts, yet as long as the body seems to be part of the self its denial would be an inappropriate use of denial. When struggles arise expose and release the beliefs and thoughts by not protecting them and giving them to the Holy Spirit. Multiple desires will fall away, yet this cannot be forced until the mind is ready.
Express love and affection as Guided and allow the mind to receive it, and simply be willing to hand over to the Holy Spirit anything in the mind that does not feel loving. Any relationship is about recognizing the One Mind, and this is discovered as it becomes apparent that there are no thoughts that can be kept private. Keep no secrets and it becomes apparent that only love can be shared. This Divine Love is beyond the body entirely, but one must start with how one currently perceives oneself. All are worthy of God´s Love, and through the lesson of forgiveness all will experience what they seek deep within.
The fear of attachment is really a fear of Intimacy. This fear is not about sexual intimacy, but it is the fear of revealing the Innermost Self, believing that rejection or attachment may result. Love and affection are held back because of the belief in expectations attached to them. Love must be freely given to be Love, and it is the same with affection. If there are strings attached to love and affection, there are also unfulfilled expectations. One always has the opportunity to open up and feel how good extending love feels. As one practices extending love and cultivates expressing affection as the Holy Spirit Guides, it will seem more and more natural. There will be Guided opportunities for this and as the mind allows the Holy Spirit to shine through it the feeling seems more and more natural. Old inhibitions are washed away in our shared Purpose. The limits that were once placed on the mind begin to loosen and dissolve. The motive shifts from getting to giving without expectations. And a feeling of Ease Guides one unfailingly.
As one does the Inner work of forgiveness, one feels more vibrationally attuned to the Spirit. And one calls forth witnesses to one´s state of mind. Everyone reflects the state of mind which is maintained. The miracle demonstrates the warmth and affection that flows from our shared Purpose. As the Purpose becomes the focus it may seem as if one is wearing a smile almost always. Notice the smiles and laughter everywhere. Love and affection are apparent when our Purpose is apparent.
Is sexual expression good or bad, helpful or harmful? What one does comes from what one thinks, and that is why Awakening is a purification of thought. Behavior modification is therefore never the goal, for behavior but follows the guide the mind chooses to listen to and follow. Sexual desire is not better or worse than any desire for the world, yet Awakening is a state of contentment that is desireless. This is the peace that passeth the understanding of the world.
All appetites are ego getting mechanisms, and fantasy is the attempt to make false associations and obtain pleasure from them. As the miracle expands and becomes consistently experienced these appetites fade, grow dim, and disappear. The ego was the belief in lack, and all apparent appetites reflected this belief. The ego attempted to put various behaviors into moral and ethical systems of judgment, yet in the healed Perspective only wholeness is experienced and the past is gone. There are no hierarchies of illusion, no order of difficulty in miracles, and no preferences in the Atonement. The ego was one error and cannot be broken into "enjoyable" error and "punishable" error, "moral" error and "immoral" error, "ethical" error and "unethical" error. Celibacy and monogamy and masturbation are all only stepping-stone concepts along the path of emptying the mind of all concepts, forgiving the illusion, and Awakening to Pure Oneness. Sacred sexuality is a contradiction in terms because Spirit transcends form entirely and it is impossible to mix Spirit and matter.
Pleasure and pain are the same error. The miracle transcends the error by showing its falsity, its impossibility. It is impossible to seek for pleasure without finding pain, for both are the same error: the attempt to reinforce the "reality" of the body and world. Christ is Spirit, not a body, and to experience Divine Mind is to forget the body entirely. Awakening involves mind training. Pay attention to the thoughts that come into awareness. Detach. Desire healing. Preferences are judgments, and as the mind yields to the nonjudgmental Perspective of the Holy Spirit the Awakening is obvious. Observe that as long as appetites seem to exist there are the ego defenses of indulgence and repression. Neither is better or worse than the other, for they are the same illusion. The miracle offers a real alternative and when one is consistently miracle-minded defenses are no longer needed.
Sex in a loving relationship dedicated to the Holy Spirit and Guided by the Holy Spirit is (in this sense) an act of affection and can continue to be so until the mind has become so unified in Purpose that there are no cravings or desires for form of any kind. When this desirelessness happens there is truly the miracle of Atonement and Christ is fulfilled in the Divine Love of Knowing God in Spirit. The miracle of Atonement transcends or dissolves the attraction to guilt in the sleeping mind. Sex for the purpose of pleasure and sensual gratification is an ego motivation, attempting to reinforce the "reality" of the body, and this always involves the illusion of guilt. As one deepens in Awakening the desires for anything of this world evaporate or fade away - and Joy radiates from within! All seeming needs or lacks are gone in Divine Love.
The ego uses relationships for gratification and the ego, being impulsive and unstable, has no conception of commitment. Commitment to a monogamous interpersonal relationship is a step that the Holy Spirit can use (as with any commitment or discipline) to open the mind to the sole or ultimate commitment that one can make: accepting the Atonement or Awakening to God's Love.
I have referred to the ego's purpose for relationships as "dixie
cup relationships." The ego seems to throw its relationships away
once it seems to get what it thinks it wants and moves on to the next
relationship for another drink. Simultaneous sexual relationships or
"open" relationships as they have been called simply appear
to add to the complexity. A monogamous interpersonal relationship can
offer a full plate of opportunities to expose and forgive the ego, and
the undoing of the ego (forgiveness) is the only Purpose for all relationships.
The ultimate realization (Self-realization) is the recognition that
Attraction to the body is the attraction to guilt. Enlightenment is a recognition of the Spirit beyond the body and the experience of Divine Innocence. The seeming Awakening "process" is an unlearning or undoing of the ego in which the mind is emptied of all specific concepts to make way for forgiveness (seeing the false as false).
Miracle impulses are the Call to return Home to God, yet they become distorted in consciousness as appetites, fantasies, and "getting mechanisms" when they pass through the ego's filter of lack and need. Agape Love knows no need or lack. Romantic sexual "love" springs from the attempt to find "love" in form. True joining opens communication and dissolves the filter, allowing miracle impulses to reach consciousness directly. Relationship is truly only a means for working miracles and extending Love and this Purpose shows the body as meaningless and reveals the Spirit as All.
Learning to give in the fullest sense will draw one out of the sense of having a separate will apart from God's Will. As long as one holds on to a self-concept one must want to get something outside of One Self, and must believe it is possible to do so. One´s assignment with a sexual partner, and indeed with everyone one meets, is to learn how to give totally, completely, without distinctions or conditions of any kind. Everyone is calling on the Sacred. Listen carefully to the Spirit, for what one is asking for is what everyone is asking for. Giving and receiving are the same. This is a path of devotion. In devoting oneself to one goal, forgiveness, one loses all sense of separate interests and separate selves. No request is too large or small in this Perspective. One can only join in this Perspective, the Perspective of the dreamer - never in the dream. Love does not oppose. There is nothing to fight, defend against, or be right about. And devotion requires trust, for trust in the Spirit dissolves all doubt.
Until the mind is Awakened through retraining and re-translation via the Holy Spirit it will seem as if there are causes in the world. Hunger, thirst, sexual desire, and the desire for stimulation seem to be based in the body and brain, yet they arise from distorted miracle impulses that pass through the lens of lack. All fears and cravings and needs are wrong-minded perceptions, yet answering the Call to be a miracle worker will yield many miracles and dissolve the lens of lack. Until the lens of lack is dissolved completely the sleeping mind will experience cravings, and cravings are either acted upon and temporarily satisfied or pushed down and denied from awareness. Neither approach will satisfy in a lasting way, yet miracles open the door to lasting peace and joy and freedom and happiness. In miracles are all seeming human needs met without effort. And the final miracle of Atonement brings an end to the belief in need and lack and fear forever.
Perception is selective. One can choose to aim the mind to the Purpose of the Holy Spirit. This is where the Joy comes. There is no sacrifice. The pleasures of this world are fleeting, transitory. If one looks at this honestly, one will see that this is so. The pleasure of a delicious food, a pleasant scene, the pleasure of sexual orgasm – all have time limits. They start and they stop. They do not offer lasting joy. They are not really gifts, because they are offerings of the ego. They perpetuate the amnesia about the Christ Self. The judgments of the world make some images attractive and the mind believes that they are valuable and does not want to let them go. It is still convinced that they are real, and therefore values outcomes that will bring about the things it still wants. They are like "fool's gold". They look very beautiful, but when you touch them or embrace them, they dissolve away, because they do not last.
Let the Spirit within Guide in all things moment by moment. The ego is flushed up and exposed in relationships, and aligning with the ego brings illusory experiences of pleasure and pain. Distorted miracle impulses reach awareness as cravings, and in this regard sexual cravings are the same as cravings for food, drink, temperature, stimulation, etc. Cravings always involve lack and preferences, and the miracle leads past this distorted perception of the world. As the ego belief system is questioned and exposed and released the "lens of lack" is cleared of all obstacles to peace. When this happens miracle impulses are experienced directly in awareness as Love and Calls for Love. Wholeness and completion are the natural characteristics of the mind, and the miracle returns these characteristics to awareness.
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