Pope to condemn Blavatsky?

An article entitled "ENCYCLICAL ON THE NEW AGE MIGHT BE COMING SOON" by Farley Clinton, was published in the May 21, 1998 issue of THE WANDERER (Vol. 131, No.21). It's author, Rev. Farley Clinton, is the Vatican correspondent to THE WANDERER. His article is based on another one which appeared in L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO, the official Vatican City State newspaper.

Some background: the encyclical by Pope John Paul II on the New Age, Madame Blavatsky, the Masters, etc. has not been issued yet but is imminent. Before an encyclical is issued, L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO usually "preps" the faithful by having introductory articles appear in its pages first.

What is significant about this encyclical is that it will be the first time a Pope has spoken officially about occultism and its various ramifications. We can already get the general gist of what the Pope will say from the article in THE WANDERER. It will be interesting to finally read the Papal document itself.

So here is the article:

ENCYCLICAL ON THE NEW AGE MIGHT BE COMING SOON by Farley Clinton

Vatican City. The long-expected encyclical from Pope John Paul II about the problem of the New Age movement today may appear fairly soon, as a serious article in L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO on May 7th reflects a desire to instruct the faithful clearly regarding this subject.

It points out five central Christian beliefs that are strongly denied and attacked in the propaganda of the fashionable books inspired by this movement:

1) The existence of a Creator
2) The reality of prayer to God, a meeting of two persons, which should have the character of adoration, of petition, of thanksgiving offered by the creature to the Creator, and is certainly not mere self-discovery.
3) The reality of human sin and the need of a Redeemer.
4) The significance of suffering and of death
5) The necessity of love and of work, not mere thought, to change the world.

Contradicting Christian belief, the New Age literature tends more or less to identify God with the world, or to make the world a necessary emanation from God, not His free creation. It knows nothing of the prayer of a creature and a sinner. It proposes "meditation" that is a totally alien kind, not reconcilable with Christian faith.

Christians believe in original sin and in the sinfulness of all of us, consequently they cannot share in the New Age hope that some sort of technique, or concentration, or union of millions of consciousnesses, can save man. They believe in the one Way of salvation, Christ the Son of God made man and introduced into history in order to save man.

The followers of the New Age are led not to accept suffering and death but to place their hopes in expanding consciousness, in rebirth, and in techniques believed to achieve these goals, while Christians believe in the power of suffering in union with Jesus Christ crucified. For Christians, death is a unique event, not an entry to one of a series of reincarnations or spiritual
journeys but the necessary step to enter eternal life.

The article in L'OSSERVATORE ROMANO, written by Teresa Osorio Goncalves, traces the origins of this popularization of old Oriental religions to the work of occultists in Europe and America in the last century. Madame Blavatsky and her Theosophical Society, founded in New York with the aid of a spiritualist in 1875, have had great influence in leading persons from Christian countries to reject the Gospels entirely in favor of some approach to Hinduism, Buddhism, or another heathen religion.

The rejection of God is central to the movement. Madame Blavatsky especially rejected God whom she called the "masculine" God, of Israel, of Christianity, and of the Muslims.

"She proposed a return to Hinduism with its cult of a mother goddess and its practice of feminine virtues. Feminists action was to be continued in the Theosophical Society under the guidance of Annie Besant, a figure in the forefront of the feminist movement."

This modern occultism is difficult to pin down to definite beliefs since it expresses itself in many different movements. But according to Goncalves, there are six teachings encountered constantly, as they are the central belief of the movement.

1) The world is seen as one organic whole.
2) But it is animated by an Energy which is more or less like God.
3) There are spiritual entities acting as mediators to man.
4) Man by spiritual exercises can control his life beyond death.
5) There is a "perennial wisdom" which precedes every religion and every culture and is superior to every religion.
6) There are "enlightened" spiritual masters one should follow.

The encyclical in preparation will probably be the first, certainly the most thorough, major document from the Church to address the thirst, or the craze, for Eastern spirituality, although the phenomenon is almost 125 years old in New York.

But false spiritualities linked to the heresies of Quietism and Jansenism flourished a century or more before being censured in Rome, as was the case with other errors.


The information for this article submitted by a helpful netizen.

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