Home > Collateral Studies, End Times, Heresy, Occult, Prayer > CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER (aka CENTERING PRAYER)

CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER (aka CENTERING PRAYER)

 

PMI NOTE: Contemplative or Centering prayer is cloaked in New Age mysticism and should be avoided. Endorsements flow freely New Age and Emergent Church leaders to Alice Bailey, Ken Blanchard, Barbara Marx Hubbard, Brian McLaren, Robert Schuller, Rick Warren and many others.  Sadly, Wheaton College and Dallas Seminary have become entangled in this web of wickedness.

In the 1970’s, three mystic Roman Catholic monks, Fr. William Meninger, Fr. Basil Pennington and Abbot Thomas Keating (head monk) labeled Centering Prayer as a “method of prayer, which prepares us to receive the gift of God’s presence, traditionally called contemplative prayer”.  It is “…the opening of mind and heart – our whole being – to God… whom we know by faith is within us….  Contemplative Prayer is a prayer of silence, an experience of God’s presence…”

The Contemplative Outreach Ltd. website featuring Thomas Keating’s teachings, provides further insight into the method of Contemplative Prayer and lists the guidelines to practice it.  It states: “’This method of prayer is a movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with Him.’ ‘The source of Centering Prayer, as in all methods leading to Contemplative Prayer, is the indwelling Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.’  ‘It is also inspired by writings of major contributors to the Christian contemplative heritage including John Cassian, the anonymous author of The Cloud of Unknowing, Francis de Sales, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Thérèse of Lisieux, and Thomas Merton.’”  Emphasis Added

Contemplative Prayer Guidelines include (sounds like TM to me):

  1. Choose a sacred word as the symbol of your intention to consent to God’s presence and action within.
  2. Sitting comfortably and with eyes closed, settle briefly and silently introduce the sacred word as the symbol of your consent to God’s presence and action within.
  3. When engaged with your thoughts*, return ever-so gently to the sacred word.
  4. At the end of the prayer period, remain in silence with eyes closed for a couple of minutes.

*Thoughts include body sensations, feelings, images, and reflections.”

Not Prayer But Mystical Meditation

Contemplative Prayer is not Biblical prayer at all, rather it is a type of mystical meditation leading the mind into an altered state of consciousness.  It goes beyond thought, providing an experiential union with so-called God or with nature producing body sensations, feelings, images, and reflections. It is based on “experiences” rather than sound doctrine. “… give attendance… to doctrine.”  1 Timothy 4:13.  Faith is to be based on God’s word rather than experiences.  “So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”  Romans 10:17, “For we walk by faith, not by sight:” 2 Corinthians 5:7.

Contemplative Prayer is also known as centering prayer, listening prayer, breath prayer, and prayer of the heart.  It is just one of many mystical practices taught within a confusing, mixed-up movement called Contemplative Spirituality. Mystical practices are now widely embraced and taught in secular and professed Christian seminaries, colleges, universities, organizations, ministries and seminars, etc. throughout the United States.  Academic promoters have introduced these practices into the fields of medicine, business and law while countless secular and Christian books, magazines, seminars, and retreats are teaching lay people how to incorporate them into their daily lives.  Promoters promise physical, mental and spiritual benefits desiring to bring about positive social change.

One promoter of mystical practices, the “Center for Contemplative Mind in Society”, states: They “can play a part in the positive transformation of governments, businesses, and organizations. We are dedicated to the idea that contemplative awareness, when incorporated into contemporary life, can help produce a more just, compassionate, and reflective society.” The following Contemplative Practices are listed on their website:

– Movement (martial arts, dance, yoga, labyrinth walking, etc.)

– Creation (singing, chanting, art, music, etc.)

– Relational (dialogue, deep listening, storytelling, journaling, etc)

– Ritual/cyclical (shabbat, vision quest, sweatlodge, alter building, ceremonies/rituals etc,)

– Activist (work, pilgrimage, mindfulness, vigals/marches, etc.)

– Generative (prayer, lectio divina, petitionary prayer, etc.)

– Stillness (silence, prayer centering, insight & sitting meditation, quieting & clearing the mind)” Emphasis Added

 

Are They Experiencing God or Seducing Spirits?

Contemplative Prayer is described as “an experience of God’s presence” and “movement beyond conversation with Christ to communion with Him” resulting in “…body sensations, feelings, images, and reflections”.

So whose “presence” are these people really experiencing?  Interestingly, the Universal Gnostic Church provides some insight through their guidelines for “Working With Your Spirit Guides”:

“If you do not already know your spirit guides, we recommend you start speaking to them. The basic way of doing this is through meditation and listening to your intuitive insights.”

Meditation:  Meditation is a process of moving your consciousness into higher planes while remaining in the physical plane. There are several meditative techniques. The Universal Gnostic Church teaches three excellent techniques for those who want to work with their spirit guides. Essene Healing Breath Meditation, Kriya Power Meditation, and Contemplative Meditation.”

“If you already know who your spirit guides are, we recommend you work with them on a regular basis.  You can do that through channeling, visualization and ritual, divination and prayer.”

Channeling:  Channeling is a process of recording or repeating out loud for others what your spirit guides tell you or show you. You can do this by writing it all down or by recording it with an electronic device. You may also do it by repeating what is said in a private session or to a large group. You may allow your spirit guides to bring other disincarnate people to deliver messages to you. When you channel, you’re working with your spirit guides.”

Visualization and Ritual:  Visualization of your spirit guides is a step toward seeing them in the physical dimension. The easiest way to learn how to visualize your spirit guides and guardian angel is through the teachings of the Magickal Order of the Golden Dawn. They teach both the skills of visualization and ritually working with your spirit guides and guardian angel.”

Prayer.  Praying with your spirit guides is an excellent way to develop a closer relationship with them. The Universal Gnostic Church recommends Intentional Prayer and Contemplative Prayer for that purpose.”  Emphasis Added 12

Regardless of what the “presence” is labeled (Spirit Guides, Guardian Angels, Jesus, God, etc.) these people are actually experiencing seducing spirits also known as demons (1 Timothy 4:1,7). And this is all accomplished through various methods of Spiritism, also known as Necromancy.

“Spiritism or Necromancy is an occult activity grounded in the belief that through certain persons acting as mediums or channels (psychics, necromancers, channelers, etc.) the dead or the spirit world can be contacted and hidden information can be acquired from those contacted. Trances and séances are often used by the medium. The power behind this activity is demonic. This activity is forbidden by the Lord. 1 Chronicles 10:13, So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to inquire of it. (1 Sam. 28:7 gives the context).” In the case of Contemplative Prayer, the individual is really acting as the channeler or necromancer communicating with demons.  This is strictly forbidden in the Scriptures.

“When thou art come into the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not learn to do after the abominations of those nations.  There shall not be found among you any one that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer.  For all that do these things are an abomination unto the LORD: and because of these abominations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee.” Deuteronomy 18:9-12

Thus, those who practice and promote Contemplative Prayer are really an abomination unto the LORD! [1]

[1] Adapted and or copied from Christine A. Narloch- http://earnestlycontend.com/CP.htm

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