The Spirituality of Barack Obama and Rick Warren

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Barack Obama, the Senator who recently spoke at Saddleback Church, drew criticism from many Christians because of his pro-abortion beliefs. Rick Warren defended his move to include Obama at the AIDS convention, and while at first glance, it may look like the two men are at opposite ends of the pole when it comes to spiritual beliefs, in actuality, they have quite a bit in common.

In an article in United Church News, Obama stated that the teachings of the UCC (United Church of Christ), of which he is a member (Trinity United Church of Christ), are “foundation stones for his political work.” Just what are those “teachings” comprised of? On Trinity’s website, on the Yoga page, the following statement is highlighted:

Within each [of]us is the seed of Divinity. Each Soul is divine. I bow to the divinity in us all!

That is the spirituality of Thomas Merton! You may be asking right now, “How is this kind of affinity to yoga and panentheism similar to Rick Warren’s beliefs? After all, he’s evangelical! Right.” But Rick Warren has been and continues to promote Thomas Merton’s contemplative spirituality, which has the same premise as that of yoga and panentheism – it’s just that what he promotes is disguised in Christian terminology so people are fooled.

It is interesting to note that on the Trinity Church of Christ website, it states: Rick Warren is “brilliant at explaining our real purpose on earth.” Such a statement clearly shows that Obama’s spiritual leaders at Trinity resonate with Rick Warren.

The United Church of Christ basically is an ultra liberal Christian denomination that has focused on social justice and making the world into a better place. But in the process of their all emcompassing view that anything positive is spiritually sound, many leaders within this group have embraced or incorporated the teachings and practices of occultism and eastern religion. One such individual is Bruce Epperly, a United Church of Christ pastor, who wrote a book called Reiki Healing Touch and the Way of Jesus, in which Epperly says: We can utilize the practice of Reiki to transform families, relationships, meetings, and institutions.” Reiki, as you know, is drawn from Tibetan Buddhism and incorporates spirit guides and psychic powers. It is extremely likely that Obama has been exposed to things such as yoga or reiki.

Rick Warren and Barack Obama also share views on global peace and world-wide unification. Obama, who was a speaker at the “Pentecost 2006: Building a Covenant for a New America” conference, used “the speech as a call for continued dialogue and bridge-building between religious conservatives and progressives.” This “bridge-building” is the same kind of talk Rick Warren uses when he is discussing his “new reformation” that will include all religions, in which he states that he will do “whatever it takes” to accomplish it in his lifetime.

In Obama’s address at Pentecost 2006, he talked about the “connection between religion and politics.” That is what Rick Warren talks about with his “three-legged stool” philosophy that government, religion and business have to work together if global peace is every going to happen. Herein lies another similiarity between Obama and Warren.

When New Ager and meditation promoter Marianne Williamson came to Rick Warren’s defense recently, she knew he shared the same vision as she. That vision, which is also Obama’s, will eventually attempt to eliminate opposition to this mystical-based new reformation. They will believe they have to in order for it to work.

We mustn’t be fooled into thinking that Rick Warren is on a different page than Obama, just because their views on abortion differ. They have found a common ground, and it is one that is sinking sand.


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