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"...The church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
I Timothy 3:15

Contemplative Spirituality

Art Sadlier

From Sound the Trumpet!, March 2013

Many Christians are unaware of the new spirituality that is gaining momentum across the entire spectrum of Christianity.

William Shannon [a mystic proponent and the biographer of Thomas Merton] stated that contemplative spirituality has now widely replaced old-style Catholicism.

Contemplative spirituality reaches far beyond the Catholic Church. Mainline Protestant traditions (Episcopalians, United Methodists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, United Church of Christ, etc.) have dived into the contemplative waters also. Evangelicalism has also now deeply imbibed of this new spirituality.

One Catholic leader stated about contemplative spirituality, "The cloud of unknowing is now the basis for nearly all Catholic spirituality, and contemplative prayer is now becoming widespread all over the world."

Silence, appropriate body posture and, above all, emptying the mind through repetition of prayer, or the repetition of a mantra such as a single word, has been the practice of mystics in all the great world religions. And they form the basis on which most modern spiritual leaders guide those who want to draw closer to God.

In Biblical meditation the thoughts of the world around us are shut out and the mind is given over to the Word of God. The focus is the Word of God, allowing God to speak to the soul through His Word:

"This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein. for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success" (Joshua 1:8).

In contemplative meditation the mind is completely shut down which allows the spirit world to enter and deceive individuals with the feeling that they are in touch with God.

Yoga introduces the secular world to the same concept which will open them up, along with the new agers, to the coming one world church, and the supposed new utopia.

Roger Oakland states the following about contemplative spirituality, "This trend away from the authority of God's Word to the reinvented form of Christianity has overcome all evangelical denominations like an avalanche. Few Bible teachers saw this avalanche coming. Now that it is underway, few realize it has even happened."

He continues, "This is best described by the Word of God giving way to experiences that God's Word forbids."

Roger sums up this new spirituality very well,

"These teachings, while actually rooted in ancient wisdom (the occult), were presented to Christendom post-New Testament and not found in the Word of God. The spiritual formation movement is based upon experiences promoted by desert monks and Roman Catholic mystics - these mystics encouraged the use of rituals and practices, that if performed would bring the practitioner closer to God (or come into God's presence).

“The premise was that if one went into the silence or sacred space, then the mind was emptied of distractions and the voice of God could be heard. In truth, these hypnotic, mantric style practices were leading these monks into altered states of consciousness. The methods they used are the same that Buddhists and the Hindus use as a means of encountering the spiritual realm. Such methods are dangerous, and are not sanctioned in the Bible—God gives no instruction for this.

“On the contrary, he warns severely against divination, which is practicing a ritual or method in order to obtain information from a spiritual source. While proponents of spiritual formation (like Richard Foster) say these methods show that the Holy Spirit is doing something new to refresh Christianity, I would suggest that what is happening is not new and is not the Holy Spirit."

This new spirituality, contemplative meditation or spiritual formation has become a common denominator in all of Christendom. This is further setting the stage for all of Christendom to merge as the harlot church.