Saturday, May 10, 2014
More Thoughts On Mind Control/Shawn/Cultishness
("guru" mind controls continued) . . . . . Now, I know Bhagwan (now known as "OSHO") used certain mind control techniques on purpose--he knew what he was doing, though I think he sincerely thought it was for the "good" cause he espoused (which was to bring his followers into "enlightenment"/"God-consciousness"). The ends, to him, justified the means. Then there are others who are simply criminals from the outset and have studied mind control techniques and use them for ulterior motives--to fleece flocks, use and abuse. Shawn, I know has long been fascinated with social movements and groupthink and studied them as well, but I think his use of certain techniques is largely unconscious and he also is generally well meaning. He has left Biblical teachings, however, and is now unmoored from God's standard and so is casting to and fro driven by his own reasoning, personal interpretation, feelings and ego . . . which results in heretical influences affecting his message and purpose.
Many observers have noticed and commented on it, that within each of his shows/teachings on one of the theological subjects in question . . . he will contradict himself, flatly and blatantly several times over. The effect of this on his "followers" is the same as what I experienced under Bhagwan and what happens in virtually all cult situations. Ironically, Shawn has pointed out and criticized the very same thing when it is done by the L.D.S. Church. Because the Church is also unmoored and has left the sound standard of Biblical doctrine it too is often caught in glaring contradictions and doctrinal floundering; and how "they" gloss over it (ie., when something that "prophet" Brigham Young taught as revelation at General Conference conflicts with a doctrine the Church NOW teaches) is by using the out of "modern revelation trumps previous revelation" or "the current 'prophet' trumps a past 'prophet'".
Bhagwan use to do something very similar (as do most cult leaders.) Only he often added a twist. If he said something today that flatly contradicted something he said yesterday . . . he would say something like "both are true". He would go further and say that really, what was "TRUE" was whatever he was saying at the moment, because he was God incarnate, and that THAT was the main point, not necessarily this or that proposition he was giving. The way of mind controlling followers was to present conflicting "truths" and illogical axioms . . . so steadily and persistently . . . such that the hearers mind . . . ("ego") . . . finally gives up trying to use reason and logic to keep things in order . . . and just surrenders to the "master"--to the leading cult personality. THEN it just becomes, WHATEVER they say, however nonsensical or irrational it is . . . is what goes!
I don't believe Shawn does this on purpose, but is a symptom of his having left orthodox doctrine to follow the musings, speculations, feelings, etc., of his own mind and predilections (and, perhaps even darker spiritual influences who relish blasphemy, false doctrine, scriptural confusion etc.) . . . . And the danger is, of course, those still "following" him because of his charisma, intellect, "edginess', uniqueness, personality etc., are likely doing the same thing as most cult followers end up doing, which all leads to fast idolatry. Because his recent methods and "teachings" on "essential" doctrines of Christianity have been so confused, conflicted, contradicting etc., the tendency is for those followers to just give up following rationally and trust HIM as a person, WHATEVER he is presenting. "Whatever the 'prophet' (or 'guru') says today, whether it contradicts yesterdays message . . . or what's been written . . . is what we follow today. . . ."
There have been a plethora of examples of this with Shawn, as mentioned above, which many have noted . . . but here's an example from just other night of what I mean: Shawn has for a while been pushing a theme that we can "throw into the trash" various wrong-headed doctrines of Mormonism; likewise from "evangelical Christianity" . . . "Calvinism" . . . "Arminianism" . . . WHILE saving those things from each that are "correct" . . . in order to create a sort of synthesis of truths . . . to be kept.
Well, the other night he mentioned the disturbing (to Biblical Christians) recent event of Glenn Beck delivering a "sermon" of sorts as Commencement Speaker for the Christian university Liberty University. Shawn (rightly, I would agree) deplored Beck's agenda to "link arms" (as a Mormon) with "fellow believers" in common cause to fight a Godless culture.
BUT, Mormons and Christians do NOT believe in the same Jesus, nor espouse the same Gospel, so "linking arms" as we do . . . in this way . . . is dangerous teaching (as per "Be not unequally yoked" --2 Cor. 6:14).
Yet, at the end of the same show, Shawn reiterated HIS teaching agenda . . . to find "common ground" between "correct" Mormon teachings and ie., those of "evangelical Christianity" which he thinks are right. . . . In other words, while he deplored Beck's effort to "link arms" . . . Shawn promoted his to "find common ground". . . .
Another example (typical of his currently muddled exegesis) is that he reiterated that same night . . . "narrow is the way" . . . and that "few will find it" . . . yet he has been teaching for a while a kind of universalism (contrary to his denial of such) that "Hell is not eternal" . . . and that "love wins" in the end--that God will . . . eventually save everybody!
So . . . is it "narrow" or not?
Again, the contradictions and confusion abound. . . resulting from leaving what God says in His Word . . . to follow one's own temperament, reasoning, feelings, predilections, speculations etc. (because one thinks God's way is too hard or un-befitting a "loving" God.)
Shawn makes it clear that he is exasperated with . . . and fails to understand why he can't be allowed to speculate and entertain and teach alternative theories and ideas contrary to accepted Christian orthodoxy. He calls "Pharisee" anyone who wants to insist that there IS orthodoxy and certain "essential doctrines" of faith.
And I CAN relate to his tirades and sentiments on a certain level. When I was a seeker . . . when I was 12 . . . 14 . . .16 . . . 17 years old and even into my 20s and 30s . . . I too speculated and imagined and entertained all kinds of vying, alternative "spiritual paths", "scriptures" and "teachers". I didn't like it when "dogmatic" people tried to tell me "how it is", considering them narrow-minded, "legalistic" . . . "Pharisaical" even. . . .
But once I got SAVED . . . and the "scales" fell away . . . and I was made ALIVE . . . and able to SEE the TRUTH of God's Word--HIS ABSOLUTE STANDARD . . . then certain basic, essential points of the Gospel have been put to rest. I believe. God is the "Lord of my reasoning"--His Word is the standard.
No, I haven't stopped thinking or speculating over some of the harder issues and doctrines. I continue to be curious about certain things. I still wonder at some of the mysteries--those things left Unsaid.
I am by no means done learning, and am more voracious than ever to learn about God, His ways, His entering into our history, creation . . . and how it all relates. I am fascinated and in awe of it all!
But I HAVE been subjected to His Word! When I was young and searching and questioning . . . when hearing of certain "Biblical" views or teachings, I would think "this doesn't seem right" . . . or "I don't think a 'loving' God would do such-and-such" and I would concoct other theories to placate my unease or disagreement . . . or look for a writer or "spiritual authority" who posited an alternative that was more to my liking and predilection.
But now, BEING SUBMITTED, I look FIRST to what God says, how HE says it is . . . and THEN I find myself adjusting to THAT, regardless of my own personal or pet notions, God willing and in His time and way. . . .
And I will note here . . . that an amazing and almost unspeakable thing has happened in that submission. SPIRITUAL EYES AND UNDERSTANDING, practically wordless . . . in my Spirit . . . is unveiling to me some of what were before inscrutable mysteries and seeming conundrums. . . . Those things that use to bother and confuse me . . . about this world, harsh reality, the "problem" ie., of "evil and suffering" . . . God's "wrath" . . . His justice . . . His doing things for "His own good pleasure" . . . His purpose of "glorifying Himself" in all things . . . I now am able to see with SPIRITUAL EYES and understand them to a deep and ever deepening appreciation and comprehension . . . BECAUSE . . . I believe . . . by being SUBMITTED to God's Word . . . and NOT intervening with my own noetically flawed reasoning and emotions. . . .
Why do I and others continue to "pick on Shawn"? For one thing, indeed because we love him and care for his soul and the souls of those he continues to influence. It is a very serious matter, what a PASTOR preaches and teaches presumably of God's Holy Word! And we (as Believers) are commanded to discern, judge and even name false teachers publicly, since it is such a serious matter!
Because, in my lost and seeking years . . . I have been involved in (what Christian orthodoxy) would consider "cults" [from Mormonism . . . to Bhagwan . . . to the Urantia Book . . . to various other forms of Eastern thought such as Zen, Sufism, Vaishnavism (Hare Krishna)] . . . but then finally being rescued by Christ and being taught THE Gospel, being BORN AGAIN in SPIRIT and in TRUTH . . . I am led to share some pertinent concerns about this matter, in love, trusting God is Sovereign nonetheless . . . while knowing and appreciating that He also uses we weak, flawed vessels as His MEANS for effecting His will, reaching out and correcting and teaching . . . here in space and time . . . on earth . . . at this space and time. . . .