by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

From the outer world of the senses, the mind and the ego, we are drawn inward by love and longing, into the mystery of what it really means to be a human being. It is a journey Home, back to God, whom Sufis call the Beloved. The third chamber of the heart, sometimes called the heart of hearts, is known as Mystery or Sirr. Sirr also means secret, and for the Sufis the greatest secret of creation is that we are one with God. Our Beloved whom we have longed for is in our heart in such intimacy that there are no longer two, but one. We are with our Beloved in complete oneness. This is when the love affair becomes fulfilled, a fulfillment that is tangible, that lives inside of us with every breath—it is intimate, it is oneness, and it is love. It is so tender; our Beloved is our friend, our companion, our lover, who is always with us. Even when we feel left alone our Beloved is with us. It is a meeting, a merging of lovers such as we long for in sexual union, in which we forget our self completely: we die and are dissolved in love. And yet the intensity and sweetness of this inner meeting make sexual intimacy seem shallow. It is not a meeting of bodies, but a merging within the heart, within the substance of our own soul, the sweet bliss running through the body, every cell alive with this intimate love affair.

This inner mystery of oneness is then reflected in the outer world, which also becomes a place of divine oneness. We come to experience how everything is a part of this living tapestry of oneness.

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From Seeding the Future: A Deep Ecology of Consciousness, available as a free PDF at Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Ph.D. is a Sufi teacher and author. His most recent books are Spiritual Ecology: The Cry of the Earth and Including the Earth in Our Prayers. For more information visit and

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