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 Relationship Yoga

  Weddigng Hug a Holy Encounter
A wedding hug is an example of a "holy encounter."


    Miracle Relationship Yoga is not a form of a Christian Tantric Yoga and has no comparable counterpart in Hindu yoga, as there is with the other four aspects of Miracle Yoga. Classical yoga is focused upon transcending the physical world, overcoming individual existence, and becoming free by merging with God. Tantric Yoga holds the ideal of joining with God and yet returning to this world as jivanmukti, one who is freed while living. Some forms of Tantric Yoga include a sexual union between a man and woman for spiritual growth, but this is considered only a preliminary stage in spiritual growth. The more advanced stage of this outer sexual union is the joining of the male and female energy currents within the body of the individual seeker and the raising of the kundalini. But all kinds of yoga, even Tantric Yoga, see meditation as the primary means of divine union and do not see relationships as a significant means of divine union.

    One factor in the lack of relationships as a means of divine union in Hindu yoga is the way in which the individual is viewed in Vedanta. Your true Self is already joined with God and when you realize your true nature, you return to God and dissolve into God. There really is not much of an emphasis on your brotherhood either here or in heaven. Your relationship with God, your identity in God, is the most important relationship in Hindu yoga and so all the means of divine union are focused on the direct joining of the individual with God.

    In contrast to this viewpoint of Vedanta, the Course sees your Identity as existing both in God and in your brother. Your true Identity is in relationship. You are still the Self, but this Christ Self is a shared identity. In this shared identity you are a part of the Sonship and still experience the Wholeness of God as His Son. Seeking only God realization as is the case in Hindu yoga leaves out an important part of your true Identity—your brother in Christ, who shares your true Identity with you.

    The ego is the idea of separation. It is the idea that you are alone. Consequently, when you decide to seek God, the ego wants to take command of your search for God. The ego as the seeker then would be drawn to making your search be an expression of you separately seeking God. The Course says that the ego is willing to seek God because it will keep you running in circles with no intention of you ever actually finding God. Of course, God can actually be found, but the road is usually a long and difficult path. The Course maintains there is another way that takes less time, is less difficult, and is a way of overcoming the ego. This overcoming of the ego does not have to wait until divine union ultimately occurs. You can overcome the ego’s idea of separation as your means of growing toward divine union.

    The ego is only an idea in your mind, but it has power because you believe in it. Overcoming the ego means taking away your allegiance to the ego and giving your allegiance to something real that is beyond the ego. The ego is the idea that you are alone. The ego fosters the illusion that you are of yourself. The ego denies God as your Author and Creator and denies your brothers who have been created as part of you. But you are not of yourself; you are of God and of your brothers. Consequently, you must find yourself in God and in your brothers.

    The idea of a separate individual consciousness is also manufactured by the ego that wants to limit the mind to your body. But you are a mind in the Mind of God and your true mind is a shared mind with the Sonship, which is another name for the Christ Self that everyone shares. In fact your function in heaven is to share your mind, and this sharing is love and is your joy. Your ego state of mind that believes in a separate individual mind can be overcome by an experience of joining your mind with the mind of another person. When you join your mind with another mind, you demonstrate to yourself that you are not alone and you demonstrate to the other person that he is not alone. This is the overcoming of the ego through relationship. A mind joined with another mind does lose its separateness, but it does not lose all of its individual identity. A joined mind finds its individual identity in relationship rather than in aloneness.

    Some of the specific ways described in the Course of overcoming the ego’s idea of separation are forgiveness, Christ’s vision, and miracles. Another specific means of overcoming the ego is the holy relationship, which will be explained below. Miracle Relationship Yoga is the practice of forming holy relationships as a means of spiritual growth.

Holy Relationships

The Holy Spirit enters all holy relatonships and helps
partners see divine love and holiness in each other.


    The foundation of the holy relationship is having a common purpose. A marriage can be a holy relationship, but any relationship based on a common purpose with common interests would be a holy relationship. Two people having the same purpose is just the agreement to hold the same idea in their minds and to both seek that idea as a goal. Why would having a shared idea of a goal be so important that it could make a relationship holy?

    To find the answer first consider how tangible things are shared. If you and a friend share a hundred dollars equally, you would each own fifty dollars. Consequently, the sharing of forms means divided ownership. But when your elementary school teacher shared the idea that two plus two equals four, you retained this idea and your teacher retained this same idea that was given to you. So in sharing an idea there is no loss to the giver or the receiver.

    Now consider how you choose to share ideas. If you are a body, much of your life is focused upon meeting your body’s needs, and then you use ideas as a means of getting what you as a body need and want. You have to decide what your personal interests are and then set goals to meet your individual needs for food, clothing, money, sex, recognition, and power. Your basic premise is that you are alone, and if you do not meet your needs nobody else will. You see yourself as different from others, and this is proven to you by your different body, personality, education, beliefs, and goals. Even when you enter relationships you decide how your needs will be met in the relationship. You meet the needs of your partner in order to have your needs met. So you have special love relationships based upon a bargain that says you will meet your partner’s needs if your partner meets your needs. If your needs are not being met, you will decide it is a bad bargain and look at making changes.

    But even if your apparent needs are met, you will not be satisfied because you will still feel a void in your life. The void is caused by not living a life that reflects who you are. Since you are a mind in the Mind of God joined with your brothers, your real need is to mirror this fact in your everyday life to remind you of who you are. This starts with the simple idea that you have common interests with your brother. The question posed above of how a shared idea of a goal can make a relationship holy can now be addressed. If you decide to join with a brother to accomplish a goal together, you have done something very radical. You are in this act entering holiness and drastically departing from your usual seeking of specialness.

    However, to be a holy relationship your joining cannot be done as a bargain to get your separate needs met, otherwise you would just be participating in another special love relationship. Your joining must be for a common purpose to meet common needs. In your goal of meeting common needs together, you are making a recognition that you and your partner have common interests. If you have common interests and common needs, you must not be different after all. You can see yourself in your partner, and your partner can see himself in you. Instead of seeing differences, you are seeing how you are similar. You are beginning to see perhaps that you may be the same, just as you once saw in Heaven that you were a part of each other. A simple idea has brought back a forgotten memory of your Home together when you were aware of being joined in divine oneness.

    Furthermore, you are sharing an idea together. If you are a body, you could not share an idea, because bodies cannot share ideas. But if you are a mind, and indeed you are, then something wonderful has happened. You have come Home in your mind. In Heaven how did you share? God showed you how to love by giving all of Himself to you, and you shared yourself by giving all of yourself to Him and to all of your brothers. Just like the idea of two and two equaling four can be shared without any loss to the giver or receiver, you could share yourself in Heaven as a divine idea and only gain by sharing and never lose by sharing. In fact, you left Heaven by stopping your sharing of yourself completely. You wanted to become an individual consciousness, a private mind. This is the source of the void in you. But the holy relationship can begin to heal this void. If you can find just one brother to share your mind in a common purpose, you prove to yourself that your mind does not have to be private. This sharing of a common purpose affects your ego-based idea of yourself.

    The ego believes it is completely on its own, which is merely another way of describing how it thinks it originated. This is such a fearful state that it can only turn to other egos and try to unite with them in a feeble attempt at identification, or attack them in an equally feeble show of strength. It is not free, however, to open the premise to question, because the premise is its foundation. The ego is the mind’s belief that it is completely on its own.1

    The ego is the thought that you are alone, but by sharing a common purpose you demonstrate that you are no longer alone. In this overcoming of aloneness you are overcoming the ego. In order to understand the ramifications of sharing of a common purpose, it is helpful to consider what setting any significant goal means to you. A goal is something you are seeking and want. If the goal is important to you, you will dedicate your efforts, time, and loving attention toward accomplishing the goal. If you really want the goal, your mind will direct its thoughts toward the goal and your actions will be expressions of moving in the direction of the goal. You will begin to define yourself in terms of the goal. The goal will give meaning to your life. The ego is meaningless, so a life with meaning overcomes the ego.

    However, the goal of a holy relationship is not a solitary goal, but rather a common purpose. You and another person are moving in the same direction to the same goal together with joined interests. You are not doing this for yourself alone, but for both of you. This is not a bargain based upon separate interests, because you and your partner are giving yourself to this purpose as a joint effort motivated by common interests. Since you are doing this together, you direct your mind and actions toward this common purpose along with your partner. Because your partner is traveling with you along the same path to the same destination for a shared purpose, you and your partner have both gained and neither has lost. You have shared not only the idea, but you also shared in the togetherness itself.

    Just as any goal becomes a way of defining yourself, the sharing of a common goal becomes a way of redefining yourself in terms of your partner. You begin to see your identity as a joined identity, rather than as an isolated identity. Your isolated identity is the ego. Your belief in the ego makes you believe that your life is defined by isolation. The existence of the ego depends on maintaining separation. The ego wants you to believe that you are the ego and your life, indeed your very existence, depends on maintaining separation. The ego’s plan is to keep you believing in isolation, but when you share a common purpose with someone, you prove to yourself that you are not isolated. The dominance of your ego identity is replaced by the beginnings of a joined identity, which is a reflection of your true nature as a joined identity in the Sonship.

    Does the common purpose have to be an overtly spiritual purpose? No. When you first join it can be for any common purpose as long as you have the correct motivation. If you are joined on the form level to do a common purpose together, but you are joined to meet separate needs, it will not be a holy relationship. You and a business partner can start a business with each of you having the purpose of making money. If you are in the business to make money for yourself and your partner is in the business to make money for himself, you both have the same purpose of making money. However, you have the same purpose separately to meet separate needs and not a common purpose to meet common needs.

    Can you change a special love relationship into a holy relationship simply by changing your own mind about the purpose of the relationship without your partner changing his mind too? If only one partner sees a common purpose and common interests, it is not a holy relationship. A common misconception of Course principles is to think that the holy relationship can be within your own mind only. If it is within your own mind only, you are still alone. In fact, the holy relationship is a demonstration that your apparently private mind is not private after all. The holy relationship is a joining of minds and therefore must be experienced in both minds simultaneously. To be a relationship, there has to be relating between two minds acting as one in purpose. It is this link between minds that makes it holy and recalls to your mind and your partner’s mind your place together in the Sonship.

    This joining of minds occurs in the long-term holy relationships, but you will also experience this joining of minds in temporary holy relationships. For example, a temporary holy relationship is manifested when true forgiveness happens. When true forgiveness takes place, two people join and have a temporary common purpose of healing. Forgiveness produces a mutual healing in both participants.

The Course is often thought of only as a means of encouraging you to forgive and change your own perceptions in order to see the world, your brothers, and your life differently. Forgiveness in traditional Christianity is usually seen as an act that you carry out in your mind in which you forgive your brother for his sins. It is a gift that you bestow on your brother for what he has really done to you. Then in the Course you learn that you forgive your brother by perceiving him as being sinless. You do this by seeing that his apparent sins produced no true effect on you, since you are a holy Son of God. This shows your brother that the sins, having no effect, must be unreal. Since his sins had no effect, your brother has no cause for guilt and, of course, you have no cause for guilt either. This undoing of sins reveals that sins are merely mistakes that have been corrected.

Forgiveness is not real unless it brings a healing to your brother and yourself. You must attest his sins have no effect on you to demonstrate they are not real. How else could he be guiltless? And how could his innocence be justified unless his sins have no effect to warrant guilt? Sins are beyond forgiveness just because they would entail effects that cannot be undone and overlooked entirely. In their undoing lies the proof that they are merely errors. Let yourself be healed that you may be forgiving, offering salvation to your brother and yourself.2

    When two people join to create a holy relationship with a common purpose, a holy instant occurs in which the Holy Spirit enters the relationship. Although the partners of a holy relationship can join on any common purpose, the Holy Spirit introduces His purpose into the relationship—the purpose of holiness itself. The Holy Spirit helps the partners to see divine love and holiness in each other and gives the gift of Christ’s vision that allows holiness to be seen.

1. T-4.II.8:1-4, p. 53
2. T-27.II.4:1-7, p. 528-529
Click here "Miracle Jnana Yoga"

Memory Walk in the Light: 

My Christian Yoga Life as

"A Course in Miracles"


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Donald James Giacobbe



    “The central message of the Course is forgiveness, and the key to yoga is opening to the divine presence. As a teacher of Miracle Yoga based on Course principles, my goal is to live my life as an expression of forgiveness and openness to the experience of Spirit.”


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