Bible Studies/truth or fiction? the danger of occultism
QUESTION: the Christian leaders who joint the countercult movement write a lot of books and make lot of documentaries to try to convince people that how dangerous to practice yoga,meditation,kundalini,
spiritualism,Channeling.they especially like to spread the videos
of the missionaries who performed exorcism in South Asia to warn people not to practice yoga or they will be possess by demons. other testimonies they offer are those people became handicapped (such as those who's eyes became blind)because they practice yoga or contact the spiritual world.the "ex-exchristians" who have left Christianity to practice eastern religions or spiritualism go back to Christianity are suppose to testify how they became blind or how they had been possesses by evil spirits and how worst other religions are.
but in my view,these testimonies are logical. they don't make sense even in the evangelical point of view. if demons and satan truly exist according to evangelical christians, satan's goal is
lead people away from Christ,but the negative consequence cause by practicing yoga or other kind of eastern practices have not lead people away from christianity. quite the contrary,people experience negative in eastern religion and spiritualism are more likely to convert to Christianity this really have no benefit for Satan.if the negative consequence are caused by satan,this mean that satan do not lead people away from christ but convert more people to christianity.
can you explain these negative consequence in a non-evangelical point of view?
ANSWER: Christians, especially those of an evangelical/fundamental persuasion, see "occultism" as evil,
but the word "occult" means "hidden." Historically, it has been wisdom not given to the general populace, but from master to student. It often involved initiation. Occultism is quite varied, from Rosicrucianism, to magick, to alchemy. I don't know if I'd call wicca/witchcraft "occult" because it is, more accurately, pagan. I have been personally involved in things as meditation, yoga, kundalini, and Spiritualism. There is nothing evil about mediation, yoga, or kundalini (which refers to an inner power source). They can, if so directed, open up "higher realms." Many mediums and trance lecturers developed their abilites through meditation. At its simplest level, it is just relaxation. If it is more focused, it can do other things. I do not consider Spiritualism to be evil or satanic. Recall that many Spiritualists do not believe in a devil or demons. I attended a Spiritualist church and had aspirations for the Spiritualist ministry. It is true that there has been much fakery in Spiritualism, but Spiritualism, simply, is this: a belief that we have an immortal soul and that there is no death. I do not "talk the dead," but I do think that spirits have communicated with me, mainly through poetry or literary work. Satanism is a mixed bag. Personally, I like Anton LaVey who founded the Church of Satan. He had some good ideas and insights. He was not an evil or bad person. He did not believe in a personal Satan, but that Satan was a type of the "unleashed self." Diane Vera believes that Satan should be an object of worship. I can't quite see that, but words as "Satan" and "God" are very much open to interpretation. Satanists believe that Satan wants us to be independent and determined. Christians believe that God wants you to be submissive. My idea of God probably is somewhat Satanic because I believe that God wants us to use our head, be intelligent, and be self-determining. I think God wants us to have sound judgment. I think God cares more about that than sound doctrine. We don't need anyone telling us what to believe. We need no masters. We can be one ourselves. Faith is not about passivity, but rigorous activity. I am not a Satanist, but, frankly, I don't believe that God wants us to bow down to anyone. If God is seen as a "father," what father wants his kids bowing down to him? Fathers want their kids to stand on their own feet. I don't think God wants any less. Joel
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QUESTION: two years ago,in a ultra-conservative church, I heard a story of a American born Korean woman,A ex-lesbian. she wrote her testimony in her book explain how God turn her into heterosexual from homosexual. in her book, she claim that when she was still a lesbian, she went to a Korean church and that Korean pastor has ability to see that she was possessed by two demons. she claim that after the pastor exorcised two demons she became heterosexual.she even go further to claim that when she was a little girl,her parents and she worshiped Korean indigenous gods and goddess (which she later believe those deities are demons after her conversion). she claim that before she was even born,her parents prayed to their indigenous deities for a baby boy and this made her being possessed by male demons made her became homosexual.I don't know if this story is a true story or just a made up story to demonize eastern religions.
even if most parts of her story are true, it still possible that she embellish her story with fundamentalist elements like she believe that other gods are demons,demon possessed made people homosexual,a pastor can see demons and exorcise them.
could this be true that some evangelical pastors have ability to see the entities beyond physical? this time I don't use the word "christian psychic" because many christian hate the word "psychic",but do the churches allow their pastors to develop a ability to see angels and demons? I know that most church don't like psychics and the bible forbid divination,but how the churches and the bible view the people who have ability to do angel reading or demon reading? (these are not divination because this don't need to know future.only know the spiritual world)
When you talk about psychic things, I've seen a number of ministers--especially Pentecostal or charismatic--who are very psychic, or display psychic-type abilities. I know of a preacher who could tell you things that were beyond the ordinary. I had a neighbor (who later became a Pentecostal minister) who saw visions when he was a teenager. For myself, I don't believe in demons, though there can be "low level" spirits, i.e. those who have not fully made the transition or who are, for some reason, earthbound. Such cases are descibed in Edith Fiore's book THE UNQUIET DEAD. When I see a tombstone which says, "at peace," it may not be so! I don't think most pastors believe in demons and, certainly, I don't believe that demons cause homosexuality. It has social influences. In many cases, demons are deities of other cultures who have been demoted. When Israel espoused one God, then the deities of, say, the Hittites or Canaanites became demons. I have heard preachers on TV who claim to have seen into the spirit realm. This could be true, yet such cases are very subjective and you can't verify them one way or another. Demon readings would consult demons and that would be forbidden by the church. Why would anybody want to consult demons? This gets into what is called the "Left Handed Path" and it is the dark side of occultism. Angel readings consult angels, but there may be different views on consulting angels amidst Protestants and amidst Catholics. I don't think Catholics consult angels per se, but they do consult saints. They do believe that saints intercede for them before God. Protestants would not likely consult angels (or saints), probably because one should consult God. Angels are "ministering spirits." Your mention of "angel readings" is significant. The school of Enochian Magick is based on communion with angels. The idea is to discern the names of angels and they will do your bidding. I think the taboos about divination are largely cultural. It was forbidden because it evoked other deities, other than the God of Israel. To me, the problem with divination (and psychics) is that there is much trickery and their intent, really, is to feed the ego, not spiritual growth or wisdom. I don't think there is anything wrong with people doing psychic things for entertainment. I read Tarot cards and even though I pray before I read, I see nothing supernatural about them. When you make a Tarot spread, you give an opinion. It's a glimpse into what may or may not happen. Sometimes it can be very insightful. Usually, I read for myself, but if I read for someone else, I'd strongly urge them to use their own judgment. Check these books: MAGICK WITHOUT TEARS by Aleister Crowley and THE SPIRITS BOOK by Allan Kardec. In MAGICK WITHOUT TEARS, Crowley answers many questions on magick and occultism. THE SPIRITS BOOK is a primer of spirit philosophy. You might want to check out the writings of Emmanuel Swedenborg. One of his basic books is HEAVEN AND HELL. He describes his spiritual visits to both places. Joel