1. Sandy

    The modern day contemplative prayer movement has its roots in the mystics of the Roman Catholic church. Priests monks and nuns have long practiced and promoted contemplative prayer as the means to a deeper spirituality hence many do not recognise the dangers of the panentheism of the new agers, buddist, hindu or other religions etc. The problem is really that the RC mystics believe they have merely to access the presence of God to experience God’s love and forget Jesus’words in John 14:6 ‘no one comes to the Father except through me’. Truly experiencing God’s love is tied to a realization that we are sinners in need of a Saviour and that ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son that whomo ever believeth in Him should not perish but have eternal life’. John 3:16.

  2. JDV

    In answer to those who would claim to be encouraging and / or practicing contemplative prayer but claim to be holding to faithful doctrine in practice, where do they draw the line as far as sufficient “but Christian“ guidelines, are they going to be inclined to robustly defend against problematic ideas and figures? How many of them are going to rule out name checking such historical and current figures that are associated commonly with contemplative prayer, promoting spiritual formation, “encountering“ God and what that entails?

    Here’s an example. Someone I know told me she was exploring relaxation and de-stressing techniques, And was guided to classes for meditation, which along with yoga seem to be making the biggest inroads as far as culture at large as well as Christian culture. She went to a center where they did that that was open to all, but didn’t like the instruction at the beginning that they were to make a “offering“ of a flower towards something as they started. It appears she quite rightly gathered that that was part of a Buddhist or Hindu ceremony, with some labels stuck in the back closet for the wide-eyed coming through the doors.

    Problem is, what if you’ve got a trusted “senior pastor” and / or the rest of a church staff or some national figure from a Bible study putting a “but Christian” label on stuff that’s specifically does have a history of practice and specifically has had mountains of documented diversions from evangelical Christianity to the “God is in everything“ panentheism that is a hallmark of where a lot of these practices go as far as eastern and mysticism religions, New Age, emergent, and all sorts of practices?

    How many wide-eyed people, especially on the younger side, who want to “go deeper” on exercise/yoga/meditation seem to find that to “go deeper”, they need to go to someone who just happens to be adherent to a particular pagan religion, which will start them on the bromides of enlightenment and go from there?

    I think this article was posted here, but here is something that appears to go to this point that related to Richard Rohr:

    https://web.archive.org/web/20201124213640/https://religionnews.com/2019/04/16/for-millennials-mysticism-shows-a-path-to-their-home-faiths/ Original link: https://religionnews.com/2019/04/16/for-millennials-mysticism-shows-a-path-to-their-home-faiths.

    ‘For millennials, mysticism shows a path to their home faiths’

  3. T. I. Miller

    Exodus 32 is the sad story of very first seeker friendly people pleasing church leader.
    His actions proved his priority. What was his first love, pleasing man or God? Nothing good can come from turning aside to walk a different path. Church leaders will be judged more harshly and justly so.
    Jesus made it crystal clear to Peter that every sheep belongs to Him not to any shepherd.
    I believe that it reasonable to apply Christs attitude about harming the little ones to hold true for His entire flock. Woe unto such a wicked pastor.

  4. Pettifogging Pharisee

    I will keep saying it. This is what happens when sound discernment and critical thinking is driven out of both the church and the Christian community so that what you are left with is an emotive religious experience that can be manipulated at will. This is in spite of Christianity’s rich history of ever encouraging critical thinking.

    And since there is no letting up on this New Ageism, it is only going to get worse.

  5. Bob Patrie

    Thank you for your article
    What about the adherents of contemplative prayer who say they dont define it as you have documented . They say that their definition is not like what you are saying.
    They dont accept other religions that are contrary to true faith in Christ Jesus.
    What do we say to them.
    Thank you

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