Archive for the ‘Hinduism’ Category
By Philip Gray
Free-lance writer and contender of the faith
What Do Hitler, Alice Bailey, and Replacement Theology Adherents Have in Common? Basically, the answer to that question is that in all three cases, they reject the Jews as God’s chosen people. Those who embrace Replacement Theology probably don’t realize that the thinking behind Replacement Theology is some of the thinking behind occultist Alice Bailey as well as Hitler when it comes to the Jews. Now we are not saying that people who adhere to Replacement Theology would want to kill the Jews as Hitler did; but Replacement Theology adherents need to understand that behind this view of the Jews lies a far more sinister aspect. Satan hates the Jews (partly because he knows God will use them in the culmination of things in the last days to end Satan’s days). That view of the Jews can start “innocently” by saying the Jews and Israel are no longer significant with regard to Bible prophecy. But it is not a far step from that thinking to anti-Semitism. Let’s just take a brief look at Alice Bailey and then Adolph Hitler and see what they thought about the Jews:
Consider these statements by Alice Bailey in her book The Externalization of the Hierarchy.
The force emanating from that section of humanity which is found in every part of the world and which we call the Jewish people. What I say here has no specific reference to any individual; I am considering the world problem, centering around the Jews as a whole. . . The Jew, down the ages, has insisted upon being separated from all other races but he brought over from the previous system the knowledge (necessary then but obsolete now) that his race was the “chosen people.” The “Wandering Jew” has wandered from System One to this where he must learn the lesson of absorption and cease his wandering. He has insisted upon racial purity . . . this insistence has been carried down the ages . . . When humanity has solved the Jewish problem (with the understanding cooperation of the Jew) and overcome ancient antipathies and hatreds, it will do so by fusing the problem in one vast humanitarian situation. When that happens, the problem will be rapidly solved and one of the major difficulties will disappear off the face of the earth. Racial fusion will then be possible. Our earth humanity and the group of human beings who are far more ancient in their origin than we are, will form one humanity and then there will be peace on earth. . . . .
The solution will come, as I said, when the races regard the Jewish problem as a humanitarian problem but also when the Jew does his share of understanding, love and right action. This he does not yet do, speaking racially. He must let go of his own separative tendencies and of his deep sense of persecution. (p.40-42, 1998 edition, Lucis Trust)
As for Hitler, we know without a doubt that he did not consider the Jews God’s “chosen people.” Rather, he wanted to eliminate them from the face of the earth. But where did he come up with this demonic evil idea? While there are different factors involved in the answer to that question, Mike Oppenheimer provides the documentation to show what was perhaps the greatest influence on Hitler and his views about the Jewish people:
Hitler’s ideas about the Aryan race came from the Thule Society. Thule was supposedly a lost island inhabited by an ancient race that were “masters of wisdom” (much like the mythology of Atlantis or Lemuria and the spiritual hierarchy, the White Brotherhood today). Though unseen, they are a superior highly intelligent beings working behind the scenes (as Benjamin Crème states). Hitler believed he was in contact with them and that they gave him power and energy. Through his alleged contacts with this mythical superior race, he believed he was destined to lead the Aryans to rule the world. Hitler’s vision of the world was that Germany would unite the world under his leadership which would last for 1,000 years.
Contance Cumbey, in her book The Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow, summarized Hitler’s path to being Germany’s messianic figure: “While still a very young child, Hitler was initiated into the finer mysteries of the occult. He attended a Benedictine monastery school near his German home. “The occult interests Hitler gained in this school, stayed with him all of his adult life and helped to shape his future spiritual philosophy.” . . .
Hitler, Himmler and Goebbels were Catholic in their background before they indulged themselves into a new spiritual worldview. Occult books were some of Hitler’s favorite reading. It was in the early 1920s Dietrich Eckart introduced Hitler to The Secret Doctrine, by [Helen] Blavatsky. He was taught its secrets by Professor-General Karl Haushofer (Suster), who was a member of the Berlin Lodge of the Vril Society. One of the primary qualifications for one to be admitted to the Vril Society was to have a minimum ability in Blavatsky’s “Secret Doctrine.” Karl Haushofer was alleged to be a master of the secret doctrines espoused by Blavatsky, and it was he who initiated prisoner Adolf Hitler at Landsberg Prison. . . .
Cumbey notes: “Hitler rightly believed he had established communication with Lucifer, from whom he openly coveted possession” (Secrets of the Rainbow p.101). It should not surprising to find that he was led to The Secret Doctrine that glorifies Lucifer.
The “Secret Doctrine” held that they originated in Atlantis and that one of the seven Atlantean races was that of the Aryans.” The Aryans were the master-race or supermen of the Atlantean races.” The myth of Aryan superiority was the basis for Hitler’s Nazism and ethnic cleansing of the Jews. . . .
Hitler seemed to have favored Blavatsky’s Secret Doctrine above other books he had. We do know that U.S. Army historians catalogued Hitler’s personal library and found numerous occultic volumes heavily annotated in Hitler’s fancy handwriting. Among the books was one that Hitler often kept by his bedside, the occult standard The Secret Doctrine by Madame Helen P. Blavatsky (Kubizek). (Adolf Hitler, The Occult Messiah, Gerald Suster, 1981).
Blavatsky not only claimed these masters were directing the work of the Theosophical Society but were also guiding the evolution of the human race throughout history. Thus Hitler found his place in the grand scheme of these masters. (“Hitler’s Spiritual Master – Maitreya,” Let Us Reason Ministries)
We can easily say that Helen Blavatsky shared a similar view about the Jews as Alice Bailey. In fact, Bailey probably got at least some of her anti-Semitic views from Blavatsky. In Blavatsky’s book The Secret Doctrine, she wrote:
Judaism, built solely on Phallic worship, has become one of the latest creeds in Asia, and theologically a religion of hate and malice toward everyone and everything outside themselves. (Blavatsky, H.P.. The Secret Doctrine (Kindle Locations 20502-20503). Chios Classics. Kindle Edition)
Blavatsky also said the Jews were “degenerate in spirituality” (Ibid. Kindle location 15961).
The point of this commentary is to show Christians, especially adherents of Replacement Theology, that occultic influences have worked their way into the church and altered the way Christians think about the Jews, Israel, and the Word of God. It’s tragic to think about Martin Luther and how he turned against the Jews in a most vehement manner; then Hitler, centuries later, used the sentiments of Luther to convince the German people that the Jews were an inferior people so that he could more easily commit the horrendous atrocities against them. (Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, LT edition, endnote section)
At a time when a clear and biblically sound understanding of Bible prophecy is most important, we find the church, paradoxically, having less knowledge of it, especially as it relates directly to Israel. Most evangelical Christians throughout history have supported the Jews and the modern state of Israel, but things are changing. The church, from its infancy, believed God had a future plan for Israel based on Scripture (Acts 3:19). This plan included the national restoration of Israel to the same land from which they were eventually dispersed. As time went on and the church drifted further and further away from her Jewish beginnings, many began to erroneously believe the church had replaced Israel. But in this day and age when we see biblical prophecy being fulfilled on such an unprecedented and unparalleled scale—with God’s continual protection and restoration of the Jews to their land, there should not be those who walk in disbelief with regard to God’s promises. But there are! . . .
God says that we are to bless them and not curse or turn against them. Of the Jew, Paul stated “unto them were committed the oracles of God” (Romans 3:2). Jesus Himself said that “salvation is of the Jews” (John 4:22). And though they have been dispersed throughout the world, God has blessed and prospered them wherever they went. We, therefore, owe a great debt to the Jewish people; and Israel is still Israel and will continue to have a special place in God’s heart and significance in the future of our planet. Remember, God has said of the Jew: “For thus saith the Lord of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye” (Zechariah 2:8).
Thanks to people like Neale Donald Walsch (Conversations with God author), who said in his book that sold millions of copies that Hitler did the Jews a favor by killing them, or people in the emergent church like Tony Campolo and Brian McLaren, who reject the notion that the Jews and Israel have any significance in the present day or the future, people’s (including many evangelicals and other Protestants) views of the Jews and Israel are fast changing. When you consider how anti-Semitism is growing throughout the world, as Christians, let us ask ourselves, “Are we to think as the world thinks? Are we to think as occultists think?” God forbid.
The Goal of Contemplatives: Changing the Consciousness of Humanity – One Contemplative Prayer After the Next
By Ray Yungen
Two authors from Great Britain portrayed a stunningly clear picture of New Age spirituality. They explained:
[T]he keynote of it appears to be a movement for synthesis derived from an understanding of the underlying unity behind all things and the sense of oneness that this brings.
This oneness of all life is the crux of the New Age movement.1
Catholic priest, the late Basil Pennington defined the contemplative spiritual worldview in his book Thomas Merton My Brother. He related:
The Spirit enlightened him [Merton] in the true synthesis [unity] of all and in the harmony of that huge chorus of living beings. In the midst of it he lived out a vision of a new world, where all divisions have fallen away and the divine goodness is perceived and enjoyed as present in all and through all.2
The first viewpoint describes God as the oneness of all existence. In Merton’s new world, God is perceived as being present “in all and through all.” It certainly appears that the same spirit enlightened both parties. The only difference was Merton’s revelation worked in a Christian context just as Alice Bailey predicted. Unfortunately, this context is now commonplace in Catholic circles, becoming so in mainline Protestant churches, and being eagerly explored and embraced by an ever-increasing number of evangelical Christians.
Evangelical leaders now debate whether such spiritual truths as resting in God are the same as contemplative silence. Based on these presented documentations, I believe contemplative prayer has no place in true Christianity. Scripture clearly teaches that with salvation comes an automatic guidance system—the Holy Spirit. Lewis Sperry Chafer, in his outstanding book Grace: The Glorious Theme, spells out this truth with crystal-clear clarity:
It is stated in Romans 5:5 that “the Spirit is given to us.” This is true of every person who is saved. The Spirit is the birth-right in the new life. By Him alone can the character and service that belongs to the normal daily life of the Christian be realized. The Spirit is the “All-Sufficient One.” Every victory in the new life is gained by His strength, and every reward in glory will be won only as a result of His enabling power.3
Show me a Scripture in the Bible in which the Holy Spirit is activated or accessed by contemplative prayer. If such a verse exists, wouldn’t it be the keynote verse in defense of contemplative prayer?
I want to emphasize what I believe cuts through all the emotional appeal that has attracted so many to teachers like Richard Foster and Brennan Manning and really boils the issue down to its clearest state.
In his book Streams of Living Water, Richard Foster emanates his hoped—for vision of an “all inclusive community” that he feels God is forming today. He sees this as “a great, new gathering of the people of God.”4
On the surface, this might sound noble and sanctifying, but a deeper examination will expose elements that line up more with Alice Bailey’s vision than with Jesus Christ’s. Foster prophesies:
I see a Catholic monk from the hills of Kentucky standing alongside a Baptist evangelist from the streets of Los Angeles and together offering up a sacrifice of praise. I see a people.5
The only place in “the hills of Kentucky” where Catholic monks live is the Gethsemani Abbey, a Trappist monastery. This also, coincidentally, was the home base of Thomas Merton.
Let me explain this significant connection. In the summer of 1996, Buddhist and Catholic monks met together to dialogue in what was billed the “Gethsemani Encounter.”6 David Steidl-Rast, a Zen-Buddhist trained monk and close friend of Thomas Merton, facilitated this event.
During the encounter, presentations on Zen meditation and practice from the Theravedan Buddhist tradition were offered.7 One of the speakers discussed the “correlation of the Christian contemplative life with the lives of our Buddhist sisters and brothers.”8
For these monks and the Baptist evangelist to be “a people,” as Richard Foster says, someone has to change. Either the monks have to abandon their Buddhist convictions and align with the Baptists, or the Baptists have to become contemplative style Baptists and embrace the monks’ beliefs. That is the dilemma in Foster’s “great gathering of God.”
David Steidl-Rast once asked Thomas Merton what role Buddhism played in his going deeper into the spiritual life. Merton replied quite frankly: “I think I couldn’t understand Christian teaching the way I do if it were not in the light of Buddhism.”9
Did Merton mean that in order to understand what Christianity really is, you have to change your consciousness? I believe that is exactly what he meant. Once he personally did that through contemplative prayer, Buddhism provided him with the explanation of what he experienced. But again the catalyst was changing his consciousness. This is what I am warning Christians about. Contemplative prayer is presenting a way to God identical with all the world’s mystical traditions. Christians are haplessly lulled into it by the emphasis on seeking the Kingdom of God and greater piety, yet the apostle Paul described the church’s end-times apostasy in the context of a mystical seduction. If this practice doesn’t fit that description, I don’t know what does.
You don’t have to change your consciousness to grab “aholt” of God. All you need is to be born-again. What Steidl-Rast and the other Gethsemani monks should have been telling Buddhists is, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).
In his book, Ruthless Trust, Brennan Manning mentions that Sue Monk Kidd eventually came under the mentorship of Dr. Beatrice Bruteau who authored the book What We Can Learn From the East. Since that title is self-explanatory, it’s easy to understand why Dr. Bruteau would write the preface to a book like The Mystic Heart by Wayne Teasdale. In the preface, she touts that a universal spirituality based on mysticism is going to save the world.
It seems that all these people want a better world. They do not seem like sinister conspirators like those out of a James Bond film. Yet, it is their niceness that rejects the reality of the fundamental separation between Man and God. It is their sense of compassion that feeds their universalism. It is idealism that makes Manning so attractive and causes him to say that Dr. Bruteau is a “trustworthy guide to contemplative consciousness.”10
The irony of this is that Manning is completely correct in his statement—Dr. Bruteau is a reliable guide to contemplative awareness. She has founded two organizations, the Schola Contemplationis (school for contemplation) and the very Christian sounding Fellowship of the Holy Trinity. With the latter, she is promoted as “a well-known author and lecturer on contemplative life and prayer.”11 Both of these organizations incorporate Hindu and Buddhist approaches to spirituality. This should come as no surprise because Bruteau also has studied with the Ramakrishna order, which is named after the famous Hindu swami Sri Ramakrishna.
The Ramakrishna order is dedicated to promoting the vision of Sri Ramakrishna. He was known for his view that all the world’s religions were valid revelations from God if you understood them on the mystical level. He was an early proponent of interspirituality. According to the book, Wounded Prophet, Henri Nouwen even viewed him in a favorable light and esteemed him as an important spiritual figure.
Sue Monk Kidd became enamored with contemplative spirituality while attending a Southern Baptist church. We could possibly dismiss that and say she was just an untaught member of the laity who was spiritually lacking in discernment. Maybe her spiritual dryness was a result of her not being grounded firmly enough in the faith. But what about the leaders and pastors whom so many look up to and who are considered trusted individuals in the church? Surely they are able to discern what is spiritually unsound. It seems safe to make this assumption. Right? Unfortunately, this is no longer the case. Surely they are able to discern what is spiritually unsound. It seems safe to make this assumption. Right? Unfortunately, this is no longer the case.
1. Ursula Burton and Janlee Dolley, Christian Evolution (Wellingborough, Northamptonshire, GB: Turnstone Press, 1984), p. 101.
2. M. Basil Pennington, Thomas Merton, My Brother (Hyde Park, NY: New City Press, 1996), pp. 199-200.
3. Lewis Sperry Chafer, Grace, the Glorious Theme (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing, 1977 Edition), pp. 313-314.
4. Richard Foster, Streams of Living Water (San Francisco, CA: Harper, 1998), p. 273.
5. Ibid., p. 274.
6. Credence Communications Catalog, Gift Ideas Edition.
9. Frank X. Tuoti, The Dawn of the Mystical Age (New York, NY: Crossroad Publishing, 1997), p. 127.
10. Brennan Manning, Abba’s Child (Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 1994), p. 180.
11. Virginia Manss and Mary Frohlich, Editors, The Lay Contemplative (Cinncinnati, OH: St. Anthony Messenger Press, 2000), p. 180.
NEW BOOKLET: Alice Bailey, the Mother of the New Age Movement And Her Plans to “Revitalize” Christianity
NEW BOOKLET: Alice Bailey, the Mother of the New Age Movement And Her Plans to “Revitalize” Christianity by Ray Yungen is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract. The Booklet Tract is 14 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklet Tracts are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of Alice Bailey, the Mother of the New Age Movement And Her Plans to “Revitalize” Christianity, click here.
By Ray Yungen
The Mystery Schools
Many people have a kind of bemused contempt for those involved with mysticism, and thus, they believe that the New Age movement is a frivolous frolic into the absurd.
In answer to this, I would like to emphasize two points. First, millions of people are having real experiences. Second, these experiences are as old as human civilization.
It is important to understand that the foundation upon which the New Age movement is based transcends the mere intellectual acceptance of ideas. It cannot be seen as separate from the mystical experience from which it springs.
The Mystery Schools are the most easily documented of the ancient adherents of occultism. They were the caretakers of this esoteric (hidden) knowledge.
These schools formed the nucleus of the religious practices of ancient nations and empires such as Egypt, China, Chaldea, Persia, Greece, and Rome, as well as the Aztec and Inca civilizations.
The Mystery religions were so labeled because their teachings were kept hidden from the common people. In fact, the term occult (meaning hidden or concealed) originated from the Mystery religions because the majority of people were ignorant of their true meanings. Only the priests and adepts (who were initiated through various grades or levels) gained insight into these hidden “truths” of the universe.
What was kept hidden or secret? It can best be summed up as the knowledge of the laws and forces that underlie the universe but are not evident to the five senses of man’s normal perception. Basically, they taught an awareness of the invisible worlds for wisdom and guidance and the development of psychic abilities and spiritual healing techniques.
New Age writers often refer to the core teachings of occultism as the Ancient Wisdom. They also refer to it as the Secret Wisdom, Ageless Wisdom, and the Perennial Wisdom. Many believe this Ancient Wisdom can be traced back to the fabled civilization of Atlantis.
Despite enormous geographical distances and cultural differences, the Mysteries all taught the same message: “Happy and blessed one, you have become divine instead of mortal.”1
The Theosophical Society
If we were to mark any particular beginning of the modern New Age movement, it would have to be the founding of the Theosophical Society. Theos is the Greek word for God, and sophos is the word for wisdom. The Theosophical Society became the society for the study of the wisdom of the Divine.
The Society was started in 1875 in New York City by Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (a Russian noblewoman) and Col. Henry Olcott, an American occultist.
The main purpose of Theosophy, as it was called, was to open the door for occult teachings to spread throughout Western society. It concentrated on the development of occult powers within the individual rather than concerning itself simply with contacting the dead, as did the spiritualist movement. The following statement can best explain the core of Theosophy:
Theosophical teachers have all repeated the old, old doctrine as the fundamental on which to build—the doctrine that the real human being is not the poor weak creature he too often thinks he is, and exhibits to others, but a wondrous spiritual being in the innermost recesses of his nature, a divine mystery, and that it is within his power to find himself, and indeed it is his destiny, to realize this and eventually become it.2
Although the Theosophical Society’s influence has greatly waned, Theosophical lodges can still be found around the world. The Theosophical Society was instrumental in beginning what is now known as the New Age movement in the western world.
Alice Bailey and the Coming One
In the early twentieth century, a figure who would have a major impact on the Western esoteric movement came out of the occultic Theosophical Society. The actual coining of the very term New Age has been attributed to her writings. Her name was Alice Ann Bailey.
Born Alice LaTrobe-Bateman, in Manchester, England on June 16, 1880, she grew up as a society girl and enjoyed all the privileges of the British upper class. Being very religious, Alice met and married a man who later became an Episcopal minister. In time, they moved to the United States. When Alice’s husband became physically abusive toward her, she fled from him and settled with her three children in Pacific Grove, California.
Alice was greatly comforted when she met two other English women living in Pacific Grove. These women introduced her to theosophy, which seemed to provide answers to her questions concerning why such misfortune had befallen her. Alice, then 35, was about to have her life changed forever. Later, in her unfinished autobiography, she wrote:
I discovered, first of all, that there is a great and divine Plan . . . I discovered, for a second thing, that there are Those Who are responsible for the working out of that Plan and Who, step by step and stage by stage, have led mankind on down the centuries.23
In 1917, Alice moved to Los Angeles and began working for that plan at the Theosophical Society headquarters where she met Foster Bailey, a man who had devoted his life to occultism. She divorced her estranged husband and married Bailey in 1920. Alice had her first contact with a voice that claimed to be a master in November of 1919. Calling himself the Tibetan, he wanted Alice to take dictation from him. Concerning this, Alice wrote:
I heard a voice which said, “There are some books, which it is desired, should be written for the public. You can write them. Will you do so?”4
Alice felt reluctant at first to take on such an unusual endeavor, but the voice continued urging her to write the books. At this point in time Alice experienced a brief period of intense anxiety in which she feared for her health and sanity. One of her other spirit “masters” finally reassured her she had nothing to fear and she would be doing a “really valuable piece of work.”5 The “valuable work” Alice was to do ended up lasting thirty years. Between 1919 and 1949, by means of telepathic communication, Alice Bailey wrote nineteen books for her unseen mentor.
To occultists, the significance of the Alice Bailey writings has heralded anticipation of the appearance of a World Healer and Savior in the coming Aquarian Age (the astrological age of enlightenment and peace). This savior would unite all mankind under his guidance. Bailey termed him the “Coming One.” This person was not to be the Lord Jesus Christ, of whom Christians await the return, but an entirely different individual who would embody all the great principles of occultism, chiefly the divinity and perfectibility of man. One of Bailey’s followers wrote:
The reappearance of the Avatar [world teacher], by whatever name he may be known, has been prophesied in many religions as well as in the esoteric [occult] tradition. A major manifestation is expected in connection with the Aquarian age.6
The Prophetic Connection
It is important to note that the apostle Paul declared one called “the man of sin” and “the son of perdition” would also proclaim himself to be God (2 Thessalonians 2:3,4). I believe this coming Aquarian messiah will be the son of perdition spoken of by Paul in 2 Thessalonians. Furthermore, I am convinced the New Age movement is his spiritual platform. Too many things fit together for this to be just mere coincidence. Therefore, we must examine the restructuring of our world by those who are preparing the way for his arrival.
Daniel 8:23 states this man will be a master of dark sayings. In Hebrew, this translates as one skilled in cunning and ambiguous speech. The world will see him as one who is distinguished and spiritually brilliant. Keep this in mind as you read the following description:
The coming one will not be Christian, a Hindu, a Buddhist, not an American, Jew, Italian or Russian—his title is not important; he is for all humanity, to unite all religions, philosophies and nations.7
The only one who could bring this about is the one who fits the description mentioned in Daniel. This explains the all-out effort by the New Age, which is saturating our society with meditation right now. When this man comes forward, all those who are in touch with their higher self, those who are awakened, will clearly recognize him as their unifier and give him their allegiance. He will have a ready-made constituency (many in key positions) to help him reconstruct society. This will be the final culmination of the paradigm shift.
The Spirit-Guide Component
A disciple of the Indian guru Rajneesh made this keen observation, illustrating the potential power of this deception and the hypnotic influence of this “Coming One”:
Something had happened to Rajneesh that made him unlike other men. He had undergone some change—enlightenment, the rising of kundalini [serpent power]—and his being had been altered in palpable [noticeable] ways. The change in him in turn affected his sannyasins [disciples] and created a persistent and catalyzing resonance between them.8
What was the nature of the resonance? The Bible predicts the Antichrist and the false prophet will perform lying wonders (Revelation 13:12-15, 2 Thessalonians 2:9). Alice Bailey described the work of her New Age “Christ” very explicitly:
The work of the Christ (two thousand years ago) was to proclaim certain great possibilities and the existence of great powers. His work when He reappears will be to prove the fact of these possibilities and to reveal the true nature and potency of man.9
The following is another powerful example of what this could mean. A Hindu spiritual teacher named Sri Chinmoy has demonstrated an ability to lift 7000 pounds with one arm. He attributed his impressive ability to meditation power and admits that without it he could not lift sixty pounds.10 What had most likely enabled him to do this was the power of familiar spirits giving him (and those observing this) the impression this was done through the power of his higher self. This is what the Bible means by “lying wonders.” The “man of sin” (the “Coming One”) will do this on a vast scale. He will seem to work great miracles to convince humanity we all have this great power, or as Bailey called it, potency, within us.
The Great Apostasy
In light of the many who will be coming in Christ’s name, I also believe the Alice Bailey “prophecies” can provide further insight into what the apostle Paul called in 2 Thessalonians 2:3 the falling away. Bailey eagerly foretold of what she termed “the regeneration of the churches.”11 Her rationale for this was obvious:
The Christian church in its many branches can serve as a St. John the Baptist, as a voice crying in the wilderness, and as a nucleus through which world illumination may be accomplished.12
In other words, instead of opposing Christianity, the occult would capture and blend itself with Christianity and then use it as its primary vehicle for spreading and instilling New Age consciousness! The various churches would still have their outer trappings of Christianity and still use much of the same lingo. If asked certain questions about traditional Christian doctrine, the same answers would be given. But it would all be on the outside; on the inside a contemplative spirituality would be drawing in those open to it.
In wide segments of Christianity this has indeed already occurred. One Catholic priest alone taught 31,000 people mystical prayer in one year. People are responding to this in large numbers because it has the external appearance of Christianity but in truth is the diametric opposite. This has all the indications of the falling away of which the apostle Paul speaks.
Note this departure is tied in with the revelation of the “man of sin.” If he is indeed Bailey’s “Coming One,” then both Paul’s prophecy and Bailey’s prophecy fit together perfectly—but indisputably from opposite camps and perspectives.
This is very logical when one sees, as Paul proclaimed, that they will fall away to “the mystery of iniquity” (2 Thessalonians 2:7). The word mystery in Greek, when used in the context of evil (iniquity), means hidden or occult!
This revitalization of Christianity would fit in with Bailey’s “new and vital world religion”13—a religion that would be the cornerstone of the New Age. Such a religion would be the spiritual platform for the “Coming One.” This unity of spiritual thought would not be a single one-world denomination but would have a unity-in-diversity, multicultural, interfaith, ecumenical agenda. Thomas Merton made a direct reference to this at a spiritual summit conference in Calcutta, India when he told Hindus and Buddhists, “We are already one, but we imagine, we are not. What we have to recover is our original unity.”14
One can easily find numerous such appeals like Merton’s in contemplative writings. Examine the following:
The Christian is not to become a Hindu or a Buddhist, nor a Hindu or Buddhist to become a Christian. But each must assimilate the spirit of the others.15 —Vivekananda
It is my sense, from having meditated with persons from many different [non-Christian] traditions, that in the silence we experience a deep unity. When we go beyond the portals of the rational mind into the experience, there is only one God to be experienced.16 (emphasis mine)—Basil Pennington
The new ecumenism involved here is not between Christian and Christian, but between Christians and the grace of other intuitively deep religious traditions.17—Tilden Edwards
What is happening to mainstream Christianity is the same thing that is happening to business, health, education, counseling, and other areas of society. Christianity is being cultivated for a role in the New Age. A spirit guide named Raphael explains this in the Starseed Transmissions:
We work with all who are vibrationally sympathetic; simple and sincere people who feel our spirit moving, but for the most part, only within the context of their current belief system.18 (emphasis mine)
He is saying that they “work,” or interact, with people who open their minds to them in a way that fits in with the person’s current beliefs. In the context of Christianity this means that those meditating will think that they have contacted God, when in reality they have connected up with Raphael’s kind (who are more than willing to impersonate whomever they wish to reach so long as these seductive spirits can link with them).
This ultimately points to a deluded global religion based on meditation and mystical experience. New Age writer David Spangler explains it the following way:
There will be several religious and spiritual disciplines as there are today, each serving different sensibilities and affinities, each enriched by and enriching the particular cultural soil in which it is rooted. However, there will also be a planetary spirituality that will celebrate the sacredness of the whole humanity in appropriate festivals, rituals, and sacraments. . . . Mysticism has always overflowed the bounds of particular religious traditions, and in the new world this would be even more true.19
The Blood of the Saints
One of the main tenets of New Age thought is peace, goodwill, and the unity of all humanity. Remember, the Age of Aquarius is to be the Age of Oneness. In context with this idea, the term cleansing is quite disturbing. A number of books make reference to those who are laggards when the New Age reaches its maturity. Various New Age writers consider these resisters as eventually the only hindrance in allowing this global spirituality to occur:
Remnants of the Fifth Root Race [untransformed humanity] will continue to survive in the initial stages of the new Cosmic Cycle, but unless they increase their awareness or consciousness to the Higher Mind and the tempo of spirituality, they will be removed from the Life Stream of the Race.20
Unity-motivated souls will respond to His [the New Age Messiah’s] call, their inner drive for spiritual world unity will synchronize with higher energy. People opposing the recognition of the Christ may struggle intensely, but it will not be prolonged. The Christ energy by then will be so strong people will be dealt with according to their own individualized karma and their ability and desire to assimilate this accelerated energy.21 (emphasis mine)
The final appearance of the Christ will be an evolutionary event. It will be the disappearance of egocentric [lower self], subhuman man and the ascension of God-centered Man. A new race, a new species, will inhabit the Earth—people who collectively have the stature of consciousness that Jesus had.22
Even Alice Bailey herself, who personified New Age consciousness, backs what these three quotes imply:
The new era is coming; the new ideals, the new civilization, the new modes of life, of education, of religious presentation and of government are slowly precipitating and naught can stop them. They can, however, be delayed by the reactionary types of people, by the ultra-conservative and closed minds. . . . They are the ones who can and do hold back the hour of liberation. . . . these must all be brought under the power of death.23 (emphasis mine)
If one understands the rationale behind these statements, then it becomes clear what they are talking about. Those who will accept the Christ consciousness can stay—those who won’t—must go. The quote about people’s “ability and desire” to assimilate the “Christ energy” as the determining factor in their fate is very thought provoking.
Barbara Marx Hubbard, a major New Age proponent and a supporter of Marianne Williamson’s Department of Peace efforts in Washington, DC says there must be a “selection process” for those “who refuse to see themselves and others as a part of God [Hubbard’s “God”].”24 She states:
He [God] describes, therefore, the necessity of a “selection process” that will select out resistant individuals who “choose” not to evolve.25
Human must become Divine. That is the law.26
Persecution and death is predicted in the Bible for those who won’t fall into line during the Antichrist’s rule. The parallel between what the Bible says about this period and the statements above are striking. The following prophecies reveal what is in store for those who will preach the real Jesus Christ and the Gospel of the true kingdom during this time. Jesus said in Matthew 24:9:
Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name’s sake. (emphasis mine)
Revelation says of this period:
And when He had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, 0 Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? (Revelation 6:9-10, emphasis added)
And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. (Revelation 20:4, emphasis mine)
The following verse lends credence that this will be on an individual spiritual basis:
And ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and kinfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be put to death. (Luke 21:16)
This implies that a family member or a friend may be turned over to be dealt with for their own good. It will be seen as an altruistic act.
The explanation I have just laid out would most likely annoy or even infuriate anyone involved with or attracted to New Age spirituality. After all, nowhere do you find New Agers saying they are going to kill anybody. It is left rather vague about how anyone will be removed. But the following channeled words by Neale Donald Walsch’s “God” explain the rationale for what most people would consider outrageous and impossible. Listen to his “God”:
So the first thing you have to understand—as I’ve already explained to you—is that Hitler didn’t hurt anyone. In a sense, he didn’t inflict suffering, he ended it.27 (emphasis added)
There is no “death.” Life goes on forever and ever. Life is. You simply change form. . . . After you change form, consequences cease to exist. There is just Knowing.28
The real issue is whether Hitler’s actions where [were] “wrong.” Yet I have said over and over again that there is no “right” or “wrong” in the universe. Now your thought that Hitler was a monster is based on the fact that he ordered the killing of millions of people, correct? What if I told you that what you call “death” is the greatest thing that could happen to anyone—what then?. . . Shall we therefore punish Bre’r Fox for throwing Bre’r Rabbit into the briar patch?29 (emphasis mine)
This is a very revealing statement. Traditional morality has been virtually turned on its head here. In other words, according to the higher consciousness that Walsch is in tune with, killing people could actually be doing them a favor! But would Walsch think this is profound higher wisdom if he himself were shivering sick and starving in a cattle car bound for Auschwitz. Would he have a smile on his face if he were stripped naked and herded into a gas chamber to face a gruesome, agonizing death? I think not!
Walsch is no obscure personality. He is highly respected and regarded. In the widely read book and film, The Secret, Walsch is described as a “modern-day spiritual messenger.”30 His Conversations with God books remain highly popular within the western world and are called “groundbreaking.”
Could there have been the same spiritual component to Hitler’s persecution of humanity in Europe? Most likely! Consider the following evidence. The swastika, the main symbol of Nazism, is an age-old Hindu symbol that is still found on many temples throughout India. The word is not even German, but Sanskrit—Svastika—meaning “that which is excellent.”31 A New Age book has described its meaning as representing “the final stage in which the chakra is active, developed, opened, and energized by awakened kundalini energy.”32 Thus, the very banner of Nazism stands for the very energy and thrust that underlies the whole New Age movement. New Agers even acknowledge this. David Spangler makes reference in one of his books to “ . . . the Nazi movement, which had many roots in occultism.”33 The swastika symbol was also prominently displayed on Madame Blavatsky’s personal brooch, in exactly the same style as the Nazi one (tilting at an angle to the right) decades before the Nazi Party was even formed. One can also see the parallel between Nazism and the Ancient Wisdom in the Hindu caste system, with its Brahmin (aryan) caste and its lower untouchable caste. The Nazis also took the term Aryan—literally, the worthy race—from Hinduism.34 The word has nothing to do with ancient Germany as many believe, but is a Hindu word meaning noble or superior.
Although the Nazi’s were militarist and racist, and the New Age promotes love and brotherhood, these facts should not be disregarded. Bailey was an idealist, but if her Coming One is the man of sin spoken of in 2 Thessalonians 2, then the comparison is not so discordant.
What we are warning about is not some unprovable conspiracy theory. In fact, far from it. In March of 2016, Newsweek magazine put out a special edition called “Spiritual Living.” This glossy publication presented page after page of pure Alice Bailey spirituality. The entire issue was devoted to the mystical perception that man is divine.
The key to positive change—both internal and external—is present in everyone, and it also exists all around us. Whether through meditation, energy healing or a full-on spiritual awakening, you can transcend the physical world to better your mind, body and soul.35
That may sound kind of benign, but numerous articles in the magazine promote the idea of spirits that can indwell people. If this had been put out by the National Enquirer, then this could be dismissed as nothing more than sensationalistic or exaggerated. But Newsweek is one of the oldest and most respected news magazines in the world. When they make this kind of an effort, then we need to sit up and take notice that Alice Bailey’s religion has now come to the forefront of mainstream society. What this means according to those who are sympathetic with this is that if we are to be “spiritual,” we need to partake of Alice Bailey’s “new vital world religion.”
To order copies of Alice Bailey, the Mother of the New Age Movement And Her Plans to “Revitalize” Christianity, click here.
1. Geoffrey Parrinder, World Religions from Ancient History to the Present (New York, NY: Facts on File Publications, 1983), p. 155.
2. Charles J. Ryan, What is Theosophy? A General View of Occult Doctrine (San Diego, CA: Point Loma Publications, Inc., revised edition, 1975), p. 16.
3. Harold Balyoz, Three Remarkable Women (Flagstaff, AZ: Atlas Publishers, 1986), p. 207.
4. Ibid., p. 210.
5. Ibid., p. 213.
6. Simons Roof, About the Aquarian Age (The Mountain School of Esoteric Studies), p. 7.
7. John Davis and Naomi Rice, Messiah and the Second Coming (Wyoming, MI: Coptic Press, 1982),, p. 150.
8 . James S. Gordon, The Golden Guru: The Strange Journey of Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh (Lexington, MA: The Stephen Greene Press, 1988), p. 236.
9. Alice A. Bailey, The Reappearance of the Christ (Albany, NY: Fort Orange Press, fourth printing, 1962), p. 124.
10. “Sri Chinmoy Lifts Over 7,000 lbs. with One Arm” (Life Times magazine, Vol. 1, Number 3), p. 45.
11. Alice Bailey, Problems of Humanity (New York, NY: Lucis Publishing, 1993), p. 152.
12. Alice Bailey, The Externalization of the Hierarchy (New York, NY: Lucis Publishing, 1976), p. 510.
13. Alice Bailey, Problems of Humanity, op. cit., p. 152.
14. Joel Beversluis, Project Editor, A Source Book for Earth’s Community of Religions (Grand Rapids, MI: CoNexus Press, 1995, Revised Edition), p. 151.
15. Swami Vivekananda’s “Addresses at the Parliament of Religions” (Chicago, September 27, 1893, http://www.interfaithstudies.org/interfaith/vivekparladdresses.html, accessed 12/2005).
16. M. Basil Pennington, Centered Living (New York, NY: Image Books, 1988), p. 192.
17. Tilden Edwards, Spiritual Friend (New York, NY: Paulist Press, 1980), p. 172.
18. Ken Carey, The Starseed Transmissions (A Uni-Sun Book, 1985 4th printing), p. 33.
19. David Spangler, Emergence: The Rebirth of the Sacred (New York, NY: Dell Publishing Co., New York, NY, 1984), p. 112.
20. Donald Yott, Man and Metaphysics (New York, NY: Sam Weiser, Inc., 1980), p. 58.
21. John Davis and Naomi Rice, Messiah and the Second Coming, op. cit., p. 152.
22. John White, “The Second Coming” (New Frontier Magazine, December 1987), p. 45.
23. Alice Bailey, The Externalization of the Hierarchy, op. cit.
24. Barbara Marx Hubbard, Conscious Evolution: Awakening the Power of Our Social Potential (Novato, CA: New World Library, 1998), pp. 240, 267.
26. Barbara Marx Hubbard, The Revelation (Novato, CA: Nataraj Publishing, 1995), p. 233.
27. Neale Donald Walsch, Conversations with God, Book 2 (Charlottesville, VA: Hampton Road Publishing Company, Inc., 1997), p. 56.
28. Ibid., p. 40.
29. Ibid., p. 36.
30. Rhonda Byrne, The Secret (New York, NY: Atria Books, 2006), p. 197.
31. Geoffrey A. Barborka, Glossary of Sanskrit Terms (Buena Park, CA: Stockton Trade Press, Point Loma Publications, 1972), p. 64.
32. Zachary E Lansdowne, Ph. D., The Chakras and Esoteric Healing (York Beach, ME: Samuel Weiser, Inc., First Indian edition: Delhi, 1993), p. 114.
33. David Spangler, Emergence: The Rebirth of the Sacred (New York, NY: Dell Publishing Company, 1984), p. 159.
34. Geoffrey A. Barborka, op. cit., p. 15.
35. Newsweek magazine, Special Edition: Spiritual Living, March 2016, p. 7.
To order copies of Alice Bailey, the Mother of the New Age Movement And Her Plans to “Revitalize” Christianity, click here.
To read more material by Ray Yungen, visit his website at www.atimeofdeparting.com.
By Lois Putnam
Imagine the shock and confusion recently when a friend went to see the kids’ movie The Good Dinosaur, and was met with the short Sanjay’s Super Team. Without warning, or explanation this wordless seven minute film burst on the screen showing what appeared to be an Indian boy in front of a TV, and his father worshipping before an open shrine (see clip). What was this film all about with its scary idols and an evil monster? How in the world did this connect with the movie The Good Dinosaur? None of it made sense!
And none of it would make sense until further research gave the answers. As many are aware, some Disney movies are preceded by an entertaining animated film done by Pixar. But this preview short was decidedly different, and had an apparent agenda. So what was this agenda, and why this short?
For a quick answer one can turn to Wikipedia’s Sanjay’s Super Team. This article tells us this mini-film was directed by Pixar animator Sanjay Patel, and produced by Nicole Grindle. The film was Patel’s own story about his conflicts and problems growing up in a Hindu family in which he had to participate in his father’s daily Hindu meditations. To counteract this, Patel, as a boy, chose to imagine the Hindu gods as super heroes. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanjay%27s_Super_Team
To tell his personal story Sanjay and his team used fast moving, even terrifying at times, animation to mesmerize the viewer. For this seven minute short exposes viewers to Hindu practices at every turn starting with the “motel room meditation.” Click here to continue reading.
How to Protect Your Child From the New Age & Spiritual Deception (a book) by Berit Kjos (practical and biblical ways to protect your children)
By Ray Yungen and the Editors at Lighthouse Trails
In an article released in January 2016 written by New Age leader Deepak Chopra titled, “Will Pope Francis Become a Holy Man for the World?,” Chopra states,
Pope Francis I is poised to be more than a very popular pontiff . . . He could rise to become a symbol of holiness beyond the Catholic Church. . . . for those of us who aren’t Catholic, there’s a universal message voiced personally by the Pope: “No one can be excluded from God’s mercy. The question, then, is how potent this mission will be.
Chopra says that “millions of non-Catholics feel a fresh wind blowing” because of the Pope’s actions and that Pope Francis has “become a spiritual exemplar.”
In the article, Chopra gives some advice to Pope Francis, that he not become another “theological” pope but rather one with a “higher consciousness” and like the “Jesus” who was not theological but rather “enlightened.” Chopra adds:
I hope in a corner of my heart that Francis I can open himself to a kind of Super-ecumenical position, not only allowing that other faiths have validity, but seeing that the Eastern tradition of higher consciousness is in fact universal. . . . we must be realistic. Spiritual experiences occur in consciousness. . . . There is no reason to reject meditation as “not Christian” when the point is that meditation, among other contemplative practices, alters brain function. In so doing, specific regions of the brain are trained to register subtle perceptions. The deeper your perceptions, the more subtle the levels of reality you are comfortable with. At the deepest level, we encounter the entire history of spiritual awakening, which is the opening of the self to the self through expanded awareness. . . . If we are in fact witnessing the career of the most conscious pope in modern times, let him tell us more about consciousness and the spiritual fulfillment it contains.
Pope Francis is well on his way to doing just that. As a Jesuit contemplative priest, he is very much drawn to this mystical higher consciousness. That is why he named Thomas Merton as one of four most meaningful people when he was in the United States last year. As we have often pointed out, Merton found Buddhist enlightenment in contemplative prayer. Merton’s view that God is in every person is summed up in this statement:
During a conference on contemplative prayer, the question was put to Thomas Merton: “How can we best help people to attain union with God?” His answer was very clear: “We must tell them that they are already united with God. Contemplative prayer is nothing other than “coming into consciousness” of what is already there. ( Brennan Manning, The Signature of Jesus (Sisters, OR: Multnomah, 1996, Revised Edition), p. 211.)
Deepak Chopra and many other are hoping that Pope Francis will be that one who will bring the entire world into “superconsciousness” (the realization that man is divine). Remember the Parliament of World Religions this past fall that Lighthouse Trails reported on (see links below). It was a New Age/New Spirituality gathering of emerging church leaders, New Age leaders, Eastern religious leaders, and others who were looking for a “Coming Messiah” as Alice Bailey “prophesied” who could save the world. And who was the figure everyone was talking about at the Parliament with enthusiasm and hope? None other than Pope Francis.
Pope Francis and the Thomas Merton Connection by Ray Yungen is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract. The Booklet Tract is 14 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklet Tracts are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of Pope Francis and the Thomas Merton Connection, click here.
After writing this booklet at my publisher’s headquarters in Montana, I learned that the Parliament of the World Religions was taking place in Salt Lake City, Utah that same week. I decided to head down there, and with a media pass, was able to enter the conference. What I experienced at the conference has confirmed to me that Pope Francis is without question an ardent interspiritualist on the same page as Thomas Merton.—Ray Yungen
Pope Francis and the Thomas Merton Connection
In 2013, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Argentina was elected Pope Francis the First. This new pope immediately began causing ripples in the Catholic Church with his statements on certain issues. He also caused many to take notice of his unpapal lifestyle such as living in a guesthouse with twelve others rather than living in the papal apartments like previous popes. He projects a down-to-earth image that denotes compassion and trust. He has been called the people’s pope, someone who is your friend, someone you can trust. But there are certain things about Pope Francis’ coming on the scene that are being ignored by the media and most people.
The first of these are the unusual circumstances that surrounded his election to the papacy. Pope Benedict resigned from his position as Pope. He is the first Catholic pope to do this since the 1400s. Popes do not resign but rather continue to be popes until they die. There was no obvious reason for Pope Benedict to resign. There was no scandal, nor no immediate health issue. (Two years into Pope Francis’ reign, Benedict is still alive.)
The second is the number of books about Pope Francis that have been released since he came on the scene. Previous popes had perhaps one or two books about them or by them. But books by or about Pope Francis are extremely prolific. You see them everywhere. Many of these books use descriptions such as revolution and hope.
The cover story in Christianity Today’s December 2014 issue proclaims: “Why Everyone is Flocking to Francis.” CT has its own idea of why “everyone” is drawn to the Pope. But if I am correct in my conclusions about contemplative spirituality and its outcome, then what is happening here is an occurrence that will affect the lives of millions of people, both Catholic and non-Catholic.
In his speech to the U.S. Congress on September 24th, 2015, Pope Francis praised four Americans he admired.1 One in particular stood out from the perspective of the spiritual future of the world—the Catholic monk, Thomas Merton. If you have been reading Lighthouse Trails literature for any length of time, you will know this reference by the pope is quite sobering and very significant. It is this situation that this booklet will be discussing.
Who is Thomas Merton? (1915-1968)
What Martin Luther King was to the civil rights movement and what Henry Ford was to the automobile, Thomas Merton is to contemplative prayer. Although this prayer movement existed centuries before he came along, Merton, a Trappist monk of the Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky, took it out of its monastic setting and made it available to, and popular with, the masses. I personally have been researching Thomas Merton and the contemplative prayer movement for over 20 years, and for me, hands down, Thomas Merton has influenced the Christian mystical movement more than any person of recent decades.
Merton penned one of the most classic descriptions of contemplative spirituality I have ever come across. He explained:
It is a glorious destiny to be a member of the human race . . . now I realize what we all are. . . . If only they [people] could all see themselves as they really are . . . I suppose the big problem would be that we would fall down and worship each other. . . . At the center of our being is a point of nothingness which is untouched by sin and by illusions, a point of pure truth. . . . This little point . . . is the pure glory of God in us. It is in everybody. 2 (emphasis mine)
This panentheistic (i.e., God in everyone) view is similar to the occultic definition of the higher self.
In order to understand Merton’s connection to mystical occultism, we need first to understand a sect of the Muslim world—the Sufis, who are the mystics of Islam. They chant the name of Allah as a mantra, go into meditative trances, and experience God in everything. A prominent Catholic audiotape company promotes a series of cassettes Merton did on Sufism. It explains:
Merton loved and shared a deep spiritual kinship with the Sufis, the spiritual teachers and mystics of Islam. Here he shares their profound spirituality.3
To further show Merton’s “spiritual kinship” with Sufism, in a letter to a Sufi Master, Merton disclosed, “My prayer tends very much to what you call fana.”4 So what is fana? The Dictionary of Mysticism and the Occult defines it as “the act of merging with the Divine Oneness”5 (meaning all is one and all is God).
Merton saw the Sufi concept of fana as being a catalyst for Muslim unity with Christianity despite the obvious doctrinal differences. In a dialogue with a Sufi leader, Merton asked about the Muslim concept of salvation. The master wrote back stating:
Islam inculcates individual responsibility for one’s actions and does not subscribe to the doctrine of atonement or the theory of redemption.6 (emphasis added)
To Merton, of course, this meant little because he believed that fana and contemplation were the same thing. He responded:
Personally, in matters where dogmatic beliefs [the atonement]differ, I think that controversy is of little value because it takes us away from the spiritual realities into the realm of words and ideas . . . in words there are apt to be infinite complexities and subtleties which are beyond resolution. . . . But much more important is the sharing of the experience of divine light . . . It is here that the area of fruitful dialogue exists between Christianity and Islam.7 (emphasis mine)
Merton himself underlined that point when he told a group of contemplative women:
I’m deeply impregnated with Sufism.8
And he elaborated elsewhere:
Asia, Zen, Islam, etc., all these things come together in my life. It would be madness for me to attempt to create a monastic life for myself by excluding all these. I would be less a monk.9 (emphasis mine)
When we evaluate Merton’s mystical worldview, it clearly resonates with what technically would be considered traditional New Age thought. This is an inescapable fact!
Merton’s mystical experiences ultimately made him a kindred spirit and co-mystic with those in Eastern religions because his insights were identical to their insights. At an interfaith conference in Thailand, he stated:
I believe that by openness to Buddhism, to Hinduism, and to these great Asian [mystical] traditions, we stand a wonderful chance of learning more about the potentiality of our own Christian traditions.10
Please understand that contemplative prayer alone was the catalyst for such theological views. One of Merton’s biographers made this very clear when he explained:
If one wants to understand Merton’s going to the East it is important to understand that it was his rootedness in his own faith tradition [Catholicism] that gave him the spiritual equipment [contemplative prayer] he needed to grasp the way of wisdom that is proper to the East.11
This was the ripe fruit of the Desert Fathers, the ancient monks who borrowed mystical methods from Eastern religion, which altered their understanding of God. This is what one gets from contemplative prayer. There is no other way to put it. It does not take being a scholar to see the logic in this.
Contemplative Prayer and The Expansion of the Catholic Church
The most obvious integration of this movement can be found in Roman Catholicism. Michael Leach, former president of the Catholic Book Publishers Association, made this incredibly candid assertion:
[M]any people also believe that the spiritual principles underlying the New Age movement will soon be incorporated—or rather reincorporated—into the mainstream of Catholic belief. In fact, it’s happening in the United States right now.12
Incorporating it is! And it is assimilating primarily through the contemplative prayer movement.
Contemplative leader Basil Pennington, openly acknowledging its growing size, said, “We are part of an immensely large community … ‘We are Legion.’”13 Backing him up, a major Catholic resource company stated, “Contemplative prayer has once again become commonplace in the Christian community.”14
William Shannon (a mysticism proponent and a sympathetic biographer of Thomas Merton) went so far as to say “contemplative spirituality has now widely replaced old-style Catholicism.”15 This is not to say the Mass or any of the sacraments have been abandoned, but the underlying spiritual ideology of many in the Catholic church is now contemplative in its orientation.
One of my personal experiences with the saturation of mysticism in the Catholic church was in a phone conversation I had with the head nun at a local retreat center who told me the same message Shannon conveys. She made it clear The Cloud of Unknowing (an ancient primer on contemplative prayer) is now the basis for nearly all Catholic spirituality, and contemplative prayer is now becoming widespread all over the world.
I had always been confused as to the real nature of this advance in the Catholic church. Was this just the work of a few mavericks and renegades, or did the church hierarchy sanction this practice? My concerns were affirmed when I read in an interview that the mystical prayer movement not only had the approval of the highest echelons of Catholicism but also was, in fact, the source of its expansion. Speaking of a meeting between the late Pope Paul VI and members of the Catholic Trappist Monastic Order in the 1970s, Thomas Keating, disclosed the following:
The Pontiff declared that unless the Church rediscovered the contemplative tradition, renewal couldn’t take place. He specifically called upon the monastics, because they lived the contemplative life, to help the laity and those in other religious orders bring that dimension into their lives as well.16
Just look at the official catechism of the Catholic church to see contemplative prayer officially endorsed and promoted to the faithful by the powers that be. The catechism firmly states: “Contemplative prayer is hearing the word of God … Contemplative prayer is silence.”17
The Merton Paradigm
A 2013 article from the UK news source The Telegraph states:
[Pope] Francis is a Jesuit and his long, arduous formation as a priest was founded on the Spiritual Exercises of St Ignatius.18
The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) reaffirmed the pope’s “Ignatian spirituality,” stating that:
All Jesuits share the experience of a rigorous spiritual formation process marked by a transformative experience with the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits. To think that the leader of the Catholic Church is one who follows in the tradition of Ignatius, whose life has been devoted to finding God in all things, and who is committed to the service of faith and the promotion of justice, fills me with great hope. This is a great day for the Jesuits and the worldwide Church.19
Harvey D. Egan, S.J., Professor Emeritus of Systematic and Mystical Theology at Boston College explains the following about St. Ignatius of Loyola:
Ignatius of Loyola . . . is one of the Christian tradition’s profoundest mystics and perhaps its greatest mystagogue [one who teaches mystical doctrines].20
Today, the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius incorporate contemplative prayer practices. Considering that Ignatian spirituality compliments much of Thomas Merton’s spiritual outlook, it is not surprising that a Jesuit pope would say the following words to the U.S. Congress:
[Thomas Merton] remains a source of spiritual inspiration and a guide for many people. . . . Merton was above all a man of prayer, a thinker who challenged the certitudes of his time and opened new horizons for souls and for the Church.21 (emphasis added)
The problem is that Merton did indeed open new horizons, but not in a good way. The horizons he opened were to “spiritual realities” that were at odds with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Rather, it reflected an interspiritual perception and even beyond that into the realm of the occult. In the book The Aquarian Conspiracy, the following information shows just how far Merton had crossed the line into realms that were spiritually dangerous.
In 1967, Barbara Marx Hubbard, a futurist moved by Teilhard’s vision evolving human consciousness, invited a thousand people from around the world . . . to form “a human front” to those who shared a belief in the possibility of transcendent consciousness. Hundreds responded, including . . . Thomas Merton.22
Even though Marx Hubbard was an outright occultist, Merton still was on board with her. There didn’t seem to be any hesitancy on his part to embrace what she referred to as transcendent consciousness. In a nutshell, transcendent consciousness is the very essence of the teaching of all the world’s mystical traditions that God is in all that exists. But consider the implications of such a belief: If God were in everything, including all people, as Merton and Hubbard believed, then there would be no need for Jesus to die for the sins of the world to reconcile man to God because man would already be divine.
The account that best illustrates what outcome this could have for Christianity is the story of Sue Monk Kidd who was a Southern Baptist Sunday school teacher in a small town in South Carolina. She would have been seen as an average Christian wife and mother. She gives a revealing description of her spiritual transformation in her book God’s Joyful Surprise: Finding Yourself Loved sharing how she suffered a deep hollowness and spiritual hunger for many years even though she was very active in her church. She sums up her feelings:
Maybe we sense we’re disconnected from God somehow. He becomes superfluous to the business at hand. He lives on the periphery so long we begin to think that is where He belongs. Anything else seems unsophisticated or fanatical.23
Ironically, a Sunday school co-worker handed her a book by Thomas Merton, telling her she needed to read it. Once Monk Kidd read it, her life changed dramatically.
In her third book, The Dance of the Dissident Daughter, not too many years after she wrote her first two books (which by the way were widely accepted in Christian circles, including a back cover endorsement by Moody Monthly magazine), there had been a dramatic change in her spiritual life as you can see in this narrative she wrote:
The minister was preaching. He was holding up a Bible. It was open, perched atop his raised hand as if a blackbird had landed there. He was saying that the Bible was the sole and ultimate authority of the Christian’s life. The sole and ultimate authority.
I remember a feeling rising up from a place about two inches below my navel. It was a passionate, determined feeling, and it spread out from the core of me like a current so that my skin vibrated with it. If feelings could be translated into English, this feeling would have roughly been the word no!
It was the purest inner knowing I had experienced, and it was shouting in me no, no, no! The ultimate authority of my life is not the Bible; it is not confined between the covers of a book. It is not something written by men and frozen in time. It is not from a source outside myself. My ultimate authority is the divine voice in my own soul. Period.24
Now Sue Monk Kidd worships the “Goddess Sophia” rather than Jesus Christ:
We also need Goddess consciousness to reveal earth’s holiness. . . . Matter becomes inspirited; it breathes divinity. Earth becomes alive and sacred. . . . Goddess offers us the holiness of everything.25
During his speech to the US Congress, Pope Francis said that Thomas Merton sowed peace in the “contemplative style.” But actually, Merton did something far different than sow peace; he sowed the actual belief systems of other religions as these two quotes below illustrate:
The God [Merton] knew in prayer was the same experience that Buddhists describe in their enlightenment.26
In other words, Merton found Buddhist enlightenment in contemplative prayer. Merton’s view that God is in every person is summed up in this statement:
During a conference on contemplative prayer, the question was put to Thomas Merton: “How can we best help people to attain union with God?” His answer was very clear: “We must tell them that they are already united with God. Contemplative prayer is nothing other than ‘coming into consciousness’ of what is already there.”27
Even influential Catholic leaders recognize this and refer to Merton as being a “lapsed monk” who “went ‘wandering in the East, seeking consolation, apparently, of non-Christian, Eastern spirituality.’”28
These new horizons by Thomas Merton that Pope Francis has found to be exemplar are going to lead to an even greater slide into interspirituality within Catholicism and even evangelical Christianity. In essence, those who are flocking to Pope Francis, as Christianity Today stated, are inadvertently flocking to Thomas Merton.
After writing this booklet at my publisher’s headquarters in Montana, I learned that the Parliament of the World Religions was taking place in Salt Lake City, Utah that same week. I decided to head down there, and with a media pass, was able to enter the conference. What I experienced at the conference has confirmed to me that Pope Francis is without question an ardent interspiritualist and on the same page as Thomas Merton. In one document I read (a letter written to all the conference participants by Archbishop Carlo Maria Bigano Vatican Ambassador to the U.S.), the Archbishop stated:
United to all of you in a bond of spiritual communion and in hope of increasing unity among all people of faith, the Holy Father offers his blessing and prayers as a pledge of strength and God.29 (emphasis added)
“Spiritual communion” is not referring to human kindness and respect to all people. This “spiritual communion” is where doctrines and beliefs are set aside, and a unity is established just as Thomas Merton suggested to the Sufi master (see page 5).
At the conference, I heard terms (in connection with the Pope, the Catholic Church, and all the world’s religions) such as “oneness,” “dialogue of fraternity,” and “he [Pope Francis] is a buddha” (said by a Buddhist monk); and the general consensus was that anyone who was not in favor of such a unity was spiritually wayward.
When Thomas Merton told the Sufi master that doctrine takes us away from the “spiritual realities” (a mystical state of oneness), he said “much more important is the sharing of the experience of divine light.” In other words, beliefs must be set aside, and in their place is a unity that can be reached through mysticism. All of the world’s major religions have a practice that offers this mystical state.
Just as Merton saw “fana” (Islamic mystical state) as one of the paths to spiritual unity, Pope Francis sees the various religions as one family. He is bringing Thomas Merton’s ideas of unity to the table of global unity among all humanity. Thomas Merton’s “contemplative style” (that Pope Francis referenced to Congress) saw no contradiction between Christianity and Buddhism; and Merton said he wanted to be the best Buddhist he could possibly be.30 When Pope Francis praised Thomas Merton (knowing full well the implications of this), he gave a green light for everyone to embrace interspirituality. And where there is interspirituality, there is no place for the Cross of Jesus Christ.
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1. Pope Francis’ speech to the U.S. Congress in September 2015: http://time.com/4048176/pope-francis-us-visit-congress-transcript.
2. Thomas Merton, Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander (Garden City, NY: Doubleday Publishers, 1989), pp. 157-158.
3. Credence Cassettes magazine, Winter/Lent, 1998, p. 24.
4. M. Basil Pennington, Thomas Merton, My Brother (Hyde Park, NY: New City Press, 1996), p. 115, citing from The Hidden Ground of Love), pp. 63-64.
5. Nevill Drury, The Dictionary of Mysticism and the Occult (San Francisco, CA: Harper & Row, 1985), p. 85.
6. Rob Baker and Gray Henry, Editors, Merton and Sufism (Louisville, KY: Fons Vitae, 1999), p. 109.
7. Ibid., p. 110.
8. Ibid., p. 69.
9. Ibid., p. 41.
10. William Shannon, Silent Lamp, The Thomas Merton Story (New York, NY: Crossroad Publishing Company, 1992), p. 276.
11. Ibid., p. 281.
12. Michael Leach (America, May 2, 1992), p. 384.
13. M. Basil Pennington, Centered Living: The Way of Centering Prayer (New York, NY: Doubleday Publishing, Image Book edition, September 1988), p. 10.
14. Sheed & Ward Catalog, Winter/Lent, 1978, p. 12.
15. William Shannon, Seeds of Peace (New York, NY: Crossroad Publishing, 1996), p. 25.
16. Anne A. Simpson, “Resting in God” (Common Boundary magazine, Sept./Oct. 1997, http://www.livingrosaries.org/interview.htm), p. 25.
17. Catechism of the Catholic Church (Urbi et Orbi Communications, 1994), p. 652.
18. Charles More, “A New Pope, a New Primate and a New Life for Christianity” (The Telegraph, March 15, 2013, http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/religion/9932996/A-new-Pope-a-new-Primate-anda-new-life-for-Christianity.html).
19. From the AJCU website stated by John Hurley, JD (president Canisius College), “Statements on Pope Francis’ Election from Presidents of AJCU and Jesuit Institutions” (March 14, 2013 http://web.archive.org/web/20150325025014/http://www.ajcunet.edu/news-detail?TN=NEWS-20130314084452).
20. Harvey D. Egan, Soundings in the Christian Mystical Tradition (Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2010), p. 227.
21. Pope Francis’ speech to the U.S. Congress in September 2015: http://time.com/4048176/pope-francis-us-visit-congress-transcript.
22. Marilyn Ferguson, The Aquarian Conspiracy (Los Angeles, CA: J.P. Archer, 1980), p. 57.
23. Sue Monk Kidd, God’s Joyful Surprise (San Francisco, CA: Harper, 1987), p. 56.
24. Sue Monk Kidd, The Dance of the Dissident Daughter (San Francisco, CA: HarperCollins, 1996), p. 76.
25. Ibid., pp. 162-163.
26. Brian C. Taylor, Setting the Gospel Free (New York, NY: Continuum Publishing, 1996), p. 76.
27. Brennan Manning, The Signature of Jesus (Sisters, OR: Multnomah, 1996, Revised Edition), p. 211.
28. Deborah Halter, “Whose Orthodoxy Is It? (National Catholic Reporter, March 11, 2005, http://natcath.org/NCR_Online/archives2/2005a/031105/031105a.php).
29. Can be read at: https://cadeioparliament.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/message-to-pwr.pdf.
30. David Steindl-Rast, “Recollection of Thomas Merton’s Last Days in the West” (Monastic Studies, 7:10, 1969).
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The Mystical Revolution: How Millions of People Have Been Introduced to the Aquarian Age by Ray Yungen is our newest Lighthouse Trails Booklet Tract. The Booklet Tract is 14 pages long and sells for $1.95 for single copies. Quantity discounts are as much as 50% off retail. Our Booklet Tracts are designed to give away to others or for your own personal use. Below is the content of the booklet. To order copies of The Mystical Revolution: How Millions of People Have Been Introduced to the Aquarian Age, click here.
By Ray Yungen
Most people understand there’s been a number of revolutions over the past forty years or so, beginning in the ’60s. For instance, there’s been the sexual revolution, the feminist revolution, and what you might call the drug revolution. These were social movements that changed and altered society to a significant degree. Before this time period, people more or less stayed with convention. They more or less conformed to society’s expectations and codes of behavior. There were technical revolutions and philosophical revolutions in the past, but the revolutions we have had since the 1960s have turned society in a totally new direction.
What many people don’t comprehend (or may understand in a vague or limited way) is that there has also been a mystical revolution. This revolution has impacted every major area of society, without exception. This is not a conspiracy theory. We are not talking about assertions of which we expect you to take our word. What we present here can be proven. In this booklet, you will see how the dots are connected.
A number of credible authors and scholars have documented this mystical revolution, three to which I would like to draw your attention. The first is Dr. James A. Herrick, a professor at Hope College and the author of The Making of the New Spirituality. In his book, Herrick says that the “Revealed Word” tradition (basically that which embraces the fundamental beliefs of Christianity) is being slowly dismantled in society and replaced by the New Age spirituality. His book is probably the most in-depth and scholarly I have yet seen. Herrick states:
[T]he past three centuries have witnessed a stunning shift in Western religious thinking away from the tenets [of Christianity]. . . . a new set of religious commitments has now replaced the fundamental claims of the Revealed Word.1
Herrick calls this replacement the “New Religious Synthesis,” which incorporates “the spiritualization of science” (i.e., quantum spirituality), panentheism (God in all things), occultic practices, “spiritual evolution” (man becoming Divine), and interspirituality (all paths lead to God) through mysticism.
Another figure who has recognized this mystical revolution is Robert C. Fuller, Professor of Religious Studies at Bradley University. According to Fuller’s book, Spiritual But Not Religious, huge numbers of Americans have embraced what he refers to as “unchurched” spirituality, which is in effect, New Age spirituality. Fuller says that millions of Americans no longer identify with the traditional religious denominations but now say they are “spiritual but not religious,” which is an unstructured mystical spirituality that is at the very heart of what I call the mystical revolution.2
A third author who has identified this mystical revolution is New York Times columnist Ross Douthat. In his 2012 book, Bad Religion, he states:
America’s problem isn’t too much religion, or too little of it. It’s bad religion: the slow-motion collapse of traditional Christianity and the rise of a variety of destructive pseudo-Christianities in its place.3
To back up the conclusions of Herrick, Fuller, and Douthat, according to a survey done by Baylor University, nearly 25 percent of the American population now view God as a “cosmic force” rather than a personal being.4
All this indicates that something unprecedented is taking place. Traditionally and overall, people in the Western world have seen God as our Father who art in heaven. God has been an individual and a personal being with all that this entails.
For those who might be skeptical about just how widespread this mystical paradigm shift is, consider some of the country’s major bookstore outlets. Amazon has around 280,000 titles that deal with New Age/New Spirituality subjects. When Borders was still in business, their metaphysical section in some stores was up to 64 shelves. Going by the law of the market (i.e., supply and demand), this means enormous numbers of people are interested.
What is Mysticism?
Readers who are not familiar with this subject may be asking, what exactly is a mystical revolution? Simply put, this is merely the practice of one stopping the normal flow of thought by focusing on the breath or a repeated sound (such as repeating a word or phrase for twenty minutes) or a continuous drum beat. This is meant to propel an individual into a state called the silence, which makes him or her susceptible to communing with unseen realities they perceive to be supernatural in nature.
The mystical revolution is basically comprised of large numbers of people learning techniques that provide mystical experiences. This is at the heart of what is called the Age of Aquarius, where all humanity is linked in a mystical manner to one other and an ultimate authority figure, both seen and unseen.
This revolution actually started about the same time as the drug revolution in the 1960s when millions of teenagers and young adults started using marijuana and LSD. Psychedelic drug use became a widespread social movement, which is reflected by the fact that many of the songs at that time had reference to drugs and psychedelic themes.
Psychedelic drug use opened the door to interest in eastern religion—specifically Hindu and Buddhist meditation. The Beatles album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band had a reference to this in the song, “Within You, Without You.” One of the lines in the song is “it’s all within you.” In other words, everything you need is already contained in you (i.e., your higher self), which is one of the tenets of mysticism. Even the famous Woodstock Music Festival was advertised as an Aquarian exposition. The word Aquarian is a term for the Age of Aquarius, which is the view that we’re moving out of the Piscean age into the Aquarian age. In this Aquarian Age, there will be a certain spiritual keynote or spiritual perception among a critical mass of humanity. This was made apparent when Swami Satchidananda opened Woodstock with a lecture given to half a million young people in the audience (you can actually see this if you rent the movie Woodstock).
After Satchidananda’s Woodstock “benediction,” things unfolded quickly. Transcendental Meditation (T.M.) became widely popular due to its founder Maharishi being on the Merv Griffin Show, a popular talk show of that time. Merv Griffin was actually a T.M. practitioner himself and even acknowledged it on the show.
Other gurus surfaced as well. Swami Muktananda was also extremely well received in the ’70s and would travel around touching people in the middle of the forehead with a peacock feather activating their third eye. They would then have mystical experiences. He reached literally hundreds of thousands with his message.
This advent of mysticism was becoming very apparent in our culture. Terms like mantra, karma, and high consciousness were being used. This was somewhat of a novelty—people were hearing about things they never thought about before.
As we moved into the 1980s, popular actress Shirley MacLaine became associated with these practices because she was converted to this view. She wrote about it in both of her autobiographies, Out on a Limb and Dancing in the Light. Each one of these books sold millions of copies and successfully introduced occultic concepts such as channeling to countless people who were not yet familiar with such practices. These were not the hippies or the counter-culture types but were everyday folks: teachers, blue-collar workers, business men and women, and such. This, in turn, generated a lot of interest from the average person in the Western world. It was the 1980s when the New Age became quite a phenomenon.
The Christian Response
In 1983, a Christian attorney from Detroit, Constance Cumbey, wrote a book titled The Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow after she accidentally stumbled upon the New Age. Cumbey was basically the first person within the evangelical church to expose the New Age as a movement. There had been many books on cults, like Kingdom of the Cults or Guidebook for Cults. But Cumbey’s book focused on individuals working within various organizations, who rather than drawing people away to cults, attempted to turn the organizations themselves into spiritual organizations that reflected the new paradigm. The book that alarmed Cumbey was the book by Marilyn Ferguson, The Aquarian Conspiracy (an influential New Age manifesto at the time), which described people who had become aware of these other dimensions and were working to become “Aquarian conspirators” (as Ferguson called them) and bring everyone else into this mystical body. They were the pioneers or the avant-garde in this new wave of consciousness.
But then the term New Age became a worn-out buzzword. The people who promoted New Age beliefs stopped using the term. As a result of this tactic, Christian concerns died out, and people saw the New Age movement as a kind of fad that was fast disappearing. I’ve always wondered about books, such as Frank Peretti’s This Present Darkness (immensely popular during that period), as to whether they had something to do with this dismissal of the New Age as a fictional fantasy and perhaps nothing more than a silly craze. It seems the initial alarm dissipated because people perceived the mystical revolution as non-relevant. A trip to your local Christian bookstore today will illustrate this point. In the section that deals with cults or apologetics, you will find books dealing with Mormonism, atheism, Islam, and so forth, but you will find almost nothing on the mystical revolution even though it has actually exploded and become embraced by a wide segment of the population.
In 1986, something very significant happened that helped turn unknown New Age writers into world-famous household names—the Oprah Winfrey Show began. Oprah had read a book by Unity minister Eric Butterworth and converted to the New Age mystical paradigm. Then in the ’90s, she dedicated her show to the New Age concepts of higher consciousness. In 1992, Oprah invited a woman named Marianne Williamson on her show. Williamson had written a book titled Return to Love, which was based on the channeled manual A Course in Miracles. To help launch Williamson’s message, Oprah gave away 10,000 copies of A Return to Love, resulting in 70,000 copies of the book selling within the first week after the show. Needless to say, Oprah was very excited about this book.
Oprah soon had a who’s who parade of New Age authors on her show. She highlighted a series of authors, most of whom went on to sell millions of books. She had Sarah Ban Breathnach, the author of Simple Abundance, and Iyanla Vanzant. And then, Oprah had one of the individuals I would consider the most indicative of this movement—Gary Zukav. Because of his regular appearances on the Oprah Show, his book, The Seat of the Soul, was at the top of the New York Times best-seller list 31 times and remained on the New York Times best-seller list for three years. Needless to say, it has sold millions of copies.
Zukav’s book was not the kind of book most people normally would have bought; it could be likened to a scholarly textbook, rather than the kind of book that would appeal to the masses.
There were many others also reaching the broad public. And by public, I mean this in the truest sense of the word. Public television began to advocate the New Age perspective. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, John Bradshaw was appearing on public television on a show called “Bradshaw on the Family.” Bradshaw had been trained in Hindu meditation by Dennis Weaver, the actor who played Chester on the 1960s television Gunsmoke. Bradshaw then passed on this knowledge to his viewers and readers, talking about meditation and the higher self. (Higher self is a term meaning the inner divinity or the god within every person.)
Deepak Chopra, an East Indian-American doctor, was another figure on public television quite often. Chopra promoted holistic health. But the most prominent and effective figure on public television, who was on for twelve years during pledge drives, is author Wayne Dyer. One could legitimately call him the Billy Graham of New Age spirituality. He had a deep booming voice and a commanding presence, which gave him an air of authority. But his message could best be summed up in one of his numerous books titled Your Sacred Self. Again, his message was always in the vein of mysticism—that if one did meditation one would achieve connection with the higher self. Like Bradshaw, Dyer reached millions of people through this venue. He literally personified the mystical revolution. In all, he has sold around 50 million books. He died in August of 2015 at the age of 75, but his books and teachings will live on.
Dr. Dyer’s publisher was Hay House, a publishing company started by a woman named Louise Hay who wrote a book called You Can Heal Your Life that sold 40 million copies. Hay became so wealthy that she was able to start her own publishing company. Today, Hay House is one of the largest New Age publishing companies.
The logo for Hay House is “look within.” In other words, everything you need is right inside of you. This is in line with the lyrics of “Within You, Without You,” the song by George Harrison of The Beatles—“it’s all within you.” As I stated earlier, these words are the theme of what New Age spirituality entails. In the Age of Aquarius, the message is when man “realizes” his own divinity, everyone will find “God” within themselves.
One could say, “Well, to each his own. We live in a pluralistic society. If people want to believe this stuff, they can. It may sound flaky or somewhat offbeat or eccentric, but I don’t care if other people believe this stuff. It won’t affect me at all. I’ll follow Jesus, and I’ll be a good Christian. There’ll still be plenty of good Christians around. Just because there’s this flaky religion out there doesn’t mean I should get excited about it.”
But here is what needs to be considered: when you look behind the curtain, you see things extremely disturbing. For instance, in the acknowledgments of popular author Iyanla Vanzant’s book, In the Meantime, she thanks her spirit guides, giving them each names. This is true of practically every major author in this movement. And then, there is Gary Zukav. The main theme of his books is that we need to turn our lives over to our non-physical guides (spirits) and teachers. Sarah Ben Breathnach was involved with Wicca and also had non-physical guides and teachers. In her book, Simple Abundance, she says spells cast on Halloween are more powerful than any other night in the year. That book sold five million copies.
Even the highly regarded and influential Wayne Dyer expressed his love and devotion to a group of non-physical entities who called themselves “Abraham” in a book for which he wrote the foreword.5
I could give numerous other examples than the ones just mentioned, but that would be redundant. This is not the exception; this is the rule. Perhaps the most noteworthy would be that of Louise Hay, founder of Hay House Publishers. Hay has a particular devotion to one of the non-physical guides and teachers whom Gary Zukav talks about, a spirit guide named Seth. Channeler Jane Roberts has authored several “Seth books.” Of those books, Hay states:
I would like to see the Seth books as required reading for anyone on their spiritual pathway. The amazing in-depth information in the Seth books is as relevant today as it was in the early 70s when Jane Roberts first channeled this material.6
This is sobering considering that practically every third or fourth book in the self-help section of most bookstores is published by Hay House.
Europe Gets on Board
In 2014, I traveled to Europe, specifically England, Ireland, and Germany for a number of speaking engagements. I was shocked to see the level of New Age acceptance in these countries. I didn’t get a real sense of how big this was until I went to a number of bookstores. In Dublin, Ireland at the city’s largest bookstore, there were 80 shelves devoted to mind, body, spirit (the “non-threatening” term for New Age spirituality). Traveling around Ireland, I found that New Age spirituality was the prominent spiritual expression even in little villages scattered around the countryside. I was expecting to find lots of books on Catholicism; instead, I found many books by the likes of Neale Donald Walsch, a New Age channeler.
Dusseldorf, Germany’s major bookstore absolutely reflected the mystical revolution I am trying to describe. Eighty-eight shelves were devoted to these subjects, which they called zie esoterik (German word for occult). It was then I was introduced to the German word for spirit guide, geist fürer.
Finally, in Birmingham, England (the second largest city in England), the largest bookstore in the center of town had a whopping 100 shelves devoted to the New Age compared to only twelve shelves devoted to Christianity. And in that small “Christian” section, many of the titles reflected the New Age view rather than the Christian.
This coincides with my experience in Germany, because right at the time I was there, I read an article that came out, which stated that Germans spend 25 billion euros a year on New Age activities and things related to the New Age. Twenty-five billion! The article said that New Age practices have become integrated into everyday life in Germany. Integrated and very common.
I had further evidence of that when I was in a large retail outlet in Germany called Hercules (the equivalent of the U.S. outlet, Walmart). The store’s large magazine section contained a sizeable number of New Age magazines, indicating the public was interested in these subjects.
In a 2013 trip to Europe, I saw the same level of interest in France. In one large bookstore, a small religion section was mostly Catholic, with a much larger section representing the entire panoply of New Age thought and practice.
All this shouldn’t be much of a surprise because the most popular spiritual author in Europe, Anselm Grün, has a strong New Age bent. Grün, a German Benedictine monk, promotes contact with spirit guides, getting in touch with “your angels,” and Buddhist-type meditation. Grün has written over 300 titles, which have sold over 14 million copies.
Clearly, from my own observation and from talking to people who live there, the mystical revolution is considerably more advanced in Europe than the U.S., although as time goes on, the gap is narrowing.
In addition to Europe, America’s neighbor to the north, Canada, has also heavily embraced this mystical revolution to roughly the same degree. In one national chain bookstore in the suburbs of Vancouver, BC, the number of shelves devoted to New Age spirituality has more than doubled in just a few years from twenty to forty-five.
Many people, including numerous Christians, see the New Age as more of a nuisance to Christianity than a serious threat. But according to New Age pundit David Spangler, this mystical revolution is actually the rise of what he refers to as a “planetary spirituality,”7 one that the entire human race buys into, one that transcends all the world’s religious dogmas and puts forth the idea that all human beings are divine.
This philosophy also carries another dimension as explained in Spangler’s book, Emergence: Rebirth of the Sacred where he explains how he came about connecting to “invisible, spiritual beings,”8 specifically one who called himself “John” (for the sake of convenience). Spangler said that during periods of meditation, he felt his own “inner being and [this spirit guide] uniting in a very deep way.”9 Spangler’s description of his relationship with “John” is most revealing:
I felt strongly that someone had walked into the room. This person’s presence was overwhelming. . . . In my inner work to that time, I had occasionally been aware of and made contact with invisible, spiritual beings. Such phenomena came with the territory [meditation]. . . I had never before felt such a strong and immediate presence.
I shared this perception with Myrtle [his friend], and . . . we agreed to sit in meditation to attempt a contact with this being. . . . I felt my inner being and his uniting in a very deep way. . . .
Thus began a relationship with a spiritual being that continues to this day.10
Spangler believes this relationship with his spirit guide has given him skills “at working with the inner dimensions of spirit”11 and that “John” has a specific purpose in connecting with Spangler:
Over the years it has been evident that John’s main interest is the emergence of a new age and a new culture, and he identifies himself as one of those on the spiritual side of life whose work is specifically to empower that emergence.12
Everyone I have profiled in this booklet, from Oprah to Wayne Dyer to John Bradshaw plus countless others have all been working to bring about this “new culture”—and they appear to have succeeded. What is taking place is far more widespread throughout the Western world than most people realize. Even the giant retail outlet Costco recognizes this reality. In their magazine, the Costco Connection, they relate this in an article titled, “Mindful Matters: Meditation as Medicine,” stating:
It’s been around for centuries and is integral to the practice of Buddhism, yet, until recently, meditation was often regarded as some strange, New Age-y, Eastern mind-body thing. No more.13
Meditation, the basic activity that underlies all metaphysics, is the primary source of spiritual direction for those in the New Age. We need only observe the emphasis that is placed on meditation to see the significance of its role in New Age thought:
Meditation is the doorway between worlds . . . the pathway between dimensions.14
Meditation is the key—the indispensable key—to the highest states of awareness.15
Meditation is a key ingredient to metaphysics, as it is the single most important act in a metaphysician’s life.16
When we examine the heart of this mystical revolution, we find there’s a source of authority, so to speak. There’s some thing, some entities running this. It’s not the authors themselves but the force behind them that is in charge. And the power or force behind all these authors despises the Gospel and hates Christianity. We must conclude that the New Age movement does not have any real leaders, only followers. I heard one writer/channeler put it very plainly when he revealed:
Everyone anywhere who tunes into the Higher Self becomes part of the transformation. Their lives then become orchestrated from other realms.17
Please remember these following two Bible verses as you consider what you have just read:
Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the Lord your God. (Leviticus 19:31)
Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils. (1 Timothy 4:1)
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1. James Herrick, The Making of the New Spirituality (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2003), p. 21.
2. Robert C. Fuller, Spiritual But Not Religious (New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2001).
3. Ross Douthat, Bad Religion (New York, NY: Free Press, 2012), p.3.
4. American Piety in the 21st Century: New Insights to the Depth and Complexity of Religion in the US (Baylor University survey, 2006, http://www.baylor.edu/content/services/document.php/33304.pdf), p. 29.
5. Esther and Jerry Hicks, Ask and It Shall Be Given (the teachings of Abraham) (Carlsbad, CA: Hay House, 2004), foreword by Wayne Dyer.
6. Louise Hay review of A Seth Book: The Early Sessions, Book 1: http://www.amazon.com/The-Early-Sessions-Book-Material-ebook/dp/B00BA1YXRO.
7. David Spangler, Emergence: The Rebirth of the Sacred (New York, NY: Del Publishing, 1984), p. 112.
8. Ibid., p. 65.
9. Ibid., p. 66.
10. Ibid., pp. 65-66.
11. Ibid. p. 66.
12. Ibid., p. 67.
13. Sally Abrahms, “Mindful Matters: Meditation as Medicine (Costco Connection, July 2014, Vol. 29, No. 7), p. 35.
14. Celeste G. Graham, The Layman’s Guide to Enlightenment (Phoenix, AZ: Illumination Pub., 1980), p. 13.
15. Ananda’s Expanding Light, Program Guide (The Expanding Light retreat center, California, April-December 1991), p. 5.
16. The College of Metaphysical Studies website, “Frequently Asked Questions About Metaphysics, Spirituality and Shamanism” (http://www.cms.edu/faq.html).
17. Talk by Ken Carey at Whole Life Expo (Los Angeles: February, 1987).
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