By Nathan Jones
Who are some of the main teachers in the New Age Movement?
Dr. David Reagan and I were delighted to have as our guest on Christ in Prophecy Warren Smith, the author of the book The Light that Was Dark. This fascinating book tells Warren's touching story of how in his search for a Savior he got sidetracked into the occultic darkness of the New Age Movement. From his many years of experience under that influence, Warren now has dedicated his life to warning Christians about the dangers of the New Age and help us recognize how we can avoid these satanic influences from creeping into our churches.
Dr. Reagan: Oprah Winfrey, she has been sort of a high priestess of this whole New Age Movement, with one New Age writer and speaker after another being paraded on her program. Would you quickly mention some other New Age names from the secular world that people might recognize that they should be aware of?
Warren Smith: Sure. Oprah had M. Scott Peck on her program back in the early 90's. A lot of people don't realize, though Scott Peck described himself as a Christian, he is really more of kind of like an emerging contemplative New Age Christian, because in his book he said, "God is within everybody." He actually laid out a plan when he said, "We're in crisis!" That's also what The Aquarian Conspiracy said to the effect, "We are in crisis and we need to have a new way of looking at things. We need a new worldview."
What Peck basically said was, "Our salvation lies in community." He didn't say "in Jesus Christ," but in community. He said that due to the duress of these times, we need to change some of our rules; and yes, that includes the Church. So, he too was introducing this idea of God-in-all.
I wrote an article years ago about M. Scott Peck and the Community of the Cosmic Christ. Starting off the article, there was a big quote by Peck saying that the mystical prophet who is bringing forth this idea of sort of a quantum leap into a new level of understanding was the Catholic Jesuit priest Pierre Teilhard de Chardin. He was the father of the New Age Movement. The title The Aquarian Conspiracy was taken by Chardin. Chardin said, "This soul must be a conspiracy of individuals." And Chardin's teachings are simply this — that God is in every atom.
Nathan Jones: That rather sounds like Star Wars which is pantheism, right?
Warren Smith: May the force be with you! Yes, this force is God penetrating His creation, but that He comes in various ways.
Other New Age teachers are Deepak Chopra, Betty Eadie and Shirley MacLaine.
Mehmet Oz, of the Dr. Oz fame, was for five years featured on Oprah Winfrey. Now he has his own program. Dr. Oz is probably one of the more dangerous, and I say that carefully, occultists out there. He has endorsed a book by a psychic by the name of Ainslie MacLeod. The book is called The Instruction. Dr. Oz has a front cover endorsement. In that book the psychic refers to spirit guides 175 times, with 40 before you get to chapter one. He talks about past lives. He encourages the reader to get into meditation and to contact their spirit guides.
Dr. Oz has also brought forward transcendental meditation, which Oz says he does. This is known as reiki, which is a very dangerous sort of body treatment that includes spirit guides. The reiki practitioners make it very clear that spirit guides are involved in that process.
Dr. Reagan: But these people are so nice, loving, and so smooth.
Warren Smith: In my days when I was a social worker and also in the New Age, some people thought I was kind of nice. But, as you know, niceness doesn't have much to do with it. We have some pastors out there who seem pretty nice, but they are bringing a lot of this New Age teaching into their churches.
Dr. Reagan: In fact, the Antichrist is going to be very nice.
Nathan Jones: Speaking of the Antichrist, you always hear in the New Age Movement of this Lord Maitreya. Can you explain a little to me if he is supposed to be the Antichrist, or as New Agers believe, he is the Messiah of the New Age Movement?
Warren Smith: I'm really impressed. I was at a conference recently and there must have been 300 people and I asked, "Has anybody heard of Maitreya?" Just one person raised their hand. I actually wrote a book called False Christ Coming, and Maitreya was one of the first four chapters.
Benjamin Creme was like Maitreya's John the Baptist. In 1982, there was a full page ad in newspapers all around the world saying, "The Christ is here, and he is waiting to be called forth." Benjamin Creme was on coast to coast radio probably four or five times over the last decade saying the very same thing. He was saying that Maitreya is still waiting to be called forth. A lot of people have just dismissed it as a bad joke. What I show in my book is that what Maitreya teaches is absolutely consistent with A Course in Miracles, with New Age Leader Barbara Marx Hubbard's teachings, with Neale Donald Walsch's Conversations With God, and with everything that Oprah Winfrey, Deepak Chopra and Dr. Oz are teaching. It's all the same bottom line — New Age teachings.
Back to Dr. Oz, he teaches New Age through holistic health. One well known pastor actually said that if you try to change your diet you'll have to be careful, because you could end up changing your worldview. That very well could happen. With Dr. Oz, one well known Christian pastor has actually brought him into his church to teach his congregation how to be healthy!
In the third segment of our interview with Warren Smith on how New Age teachings have infiltrated the Church, he'll tell us what some of these heresies are.