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    “See to it no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ” (Colossians 2:8).

    « The Still, Small Voice | No Comment (Part 3 of 3) »

    Good Intentions: A Few Quotes

    “I dare not take it. Not even to keep it safe. Understand, Frodo. I would use this ring from a desire to do good... But through me, it would wield a power too great and terrible to imagine.”~Gandalf, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (film)


    “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions”~A proverb


    Pragmatism (the ends justify the means) looks at intent to discern whether an action is right or wrong. Unfortunatly, this disreagards God's word (the Bible) which will tell us right from wrong, as God has already discerned the hearts of people.


    Though not limited to spiritual disciplines, the ideas of pragmatism and intent are reflected in the principles of the following passage,


    "Research analyst and author Ray Yungen discusses the concept of “intent” with regard to the contemplative prayer controversy:

    One of the most common objections made by the defenders and admirers of Foster and [Brennan] Manning is that they are not really teaching Eastern mysticism, because their focus and attention is on the God of Christianity; they argue that their focus is for people to walk more closely with Jesus, not Shiva or Buddha, thus the teachings are westernized even though the practices are identical to the East. On the surface this may seem like a valid defense, but listen to the founder of the top contemplative prayer school in America (Shalem Institute), and see why this defense is precarious at best: Tilden Edwards explains, “This mystical stream [contemplative prayer] is the Western bridge to Far Eastern spirituality” [from Edwards' book, Spiritual Friend].

    This means that, regardless of intent, Western mysticism, due to its common practices with the East, produces a passage into the understanding of Eastern spiritual concepts. Thus, if you practice Western yoga or pray the mantra, you go into the same trance as the East; if you open yourself, through this trance, to the Western spirit world, you end up in the same demonic realm or with gods of the East; then, if you open yourself to the demonic realm, you enter into the same realm of consciousness as the East where all is One and everyone and everything is seen as God–hence panentheism; finally, if you embrace panentheism, the Gospel loses its significance, and each individual feels persuaded to find his or her own way to God.

    What begins as a seemingly innocent “Jesus Prayer” [a contemplative practice] becomes a rejection of the Gospel. In other words, you can call a practice by any other name, but it is the same practice, hence the same results. For example, if you were to jump off a cliff with the intent to fly saying the word “fly, fly, fly” as you jump off and someone else jumped off the same cliff with the intent to hit the bottom saying “fall, fall, fall” as he jumps off, in either case both will hit the bottom. Unfortunately, this is exactly what is happening in contemplative prayer, although the intent may be to honor Christ. (A Time of Departing, p. 86)


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