Click below for the various parts of this series on New Ager Roma Downey (and husband Mark Burnett):
Note – all above blogs © 2012-2014 Dave Mosher, all rights reserved. Excerpts may be quoted up to 300 words, as long as credit is given to my original blogs and links provided to my original blogs. Thank you.
Now on to the current post:
Roma Downey’s comments about her New Age “Spiritual Psychology” degree show she is not a Christian as she claims, but a New Ager
In the Wikipedia article about Roma Downey I noticed this fact: “Roma graduated from the University of Santa Monica with a master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology.”
On a technical note, this blog says Downey “will graduate in June”; it was written Apr. 23, but doesn’t say what year. I looked back at several previous blogs – the Mar. 25 blog refers to “this Sunday, March 28.” Which would mean the Downey blog was written Apr. 23, 2010. So apparently Roma Downey graduated from USM in June 2010.
What exactly is “Spiritual Psychology”? Is it “New Age”? Bingo, you’re correct! I’m going to quote from several sources here, to explain Spiritual Psychology and Downey’s involvement.
This discernment article (which unfortunately says we should give “The Bible” a chance by watching it and discussing it with nonbelievers) nonetheless contains much helpful info on Downey. Such as:
I think, without question, [Della] Reese has had an influence over Downey’s view of God, and possibly that of Burnett, as well. However, even if she hasn’t [obviously she has, as I showed in another blog], Downey definitely has been exposed to the New Age having earned a degree in spiritual psychology from the University of Santa Monica (USM). (Charisma)
Lest one think this is a fully accredited four-year university with degrees in several schools; it is not. USM only offers an advance degree in “Spiritual Psycology”. If there is any question as to whether this is tied into New Age thought one only has to look to the founder of USM, Roger Delano Hinkins [I added this link-DM], who goes by the name, John-Roger. Hinkins, or John-Roger, is a prominent New Age author and teacher.
And here’s what I found about Spiritual Psychology at the Santa Monica Spiritual Psychology website:
“Spiritual Psychology is the study and practice of the art and science of human evolution in consciousness… “surrendering” and “sacrificing” is work that can and has been called “healing,” which includes healing on the physical, mental, and emotional levels in service to the deeper revelation of who we truly are as Loving, Peaceful, Compassionate, and Joyful beings. We refer to this level of awareness as the Authentic Self…
Put another way, Spiritual Psychology is a technology that empowers students to convert their everyday life experience into rungs on the ladder of Spiritual Evolution…
Change is taking place at an unprecedented pace on our planet… From within the Context of Spiritual Psychology, the only way to truly promote peace is for there to be more peaceful individuals living in the world.
… assuming we get through the current challenges, these very same skills will be highly valued as we transform into a more peaceful, highly globalized world.”
Regarding the University of Santa Monica, this Wikipedia article states, [founder Roger Delano Hinkins was joined by] “Dr. H. Ronald Hulnick and Dr. Mary R. Hulnick (former faculty members at New Mexico State University), who shortly thereafter took on the roles and responsibilities as President and Academic Vice President, respectively.” And in Google’s “Book” section, I found this book: Loyalty to Your Soul: The Heart of Spiritual Psychology, by H. Ronald Hulnick, Ph.D., Mary R. Hulnick, Neale Donald Walsch. The New Age Roma Downey provides this glowing endorsement (viewable online) near the beginning of the book as follows:
“As a USM [University of Santa Monica] graduate, I know firsthand the value I received from participating with Ron and Mary in the Master’s degree Program in Spiritual Psychology. I am so grateful to have Loyalty to Your Soul to sweetly remind me of all I have learned. Let’s just say that I went from playing an angel on TV to living more of an angelic life every day. The teachings in this beautiful book have sent me on a journey to the very center of my own being where, wrapped in the safe wings of Love, I feel as though I have come home.”
For more info on the above book on Spiritual Psychology, see the book’s home page here.
Finally, a quote from this source:
“Roma also attends the University of Santa Monica, a private graduate school founded by New Age spiritual and self-help guru John-Roger, and will graduate with a master’s degree in spiritual psychology in June .
‘As someone who has been on a spiritual journey for many years [so basically Downey admits she has been a New Ager for many years – notice she doesn’t say here she’s been “a Christian” for many years], it seems a natural extension of that work,’ says the lady still seen in Hallmark Channel reruns as angel Monica. She notes, ‘The skills I’m learning will ultimately qualify me to be a therapist’ — not that she has plans to start a practice anytime soon. ‘It’s really so interesting to learn about human behavior.’
And other matters.
Says Roma, who lives in Malibu, ‘My kids go to school about a 40-minute drive away. I’m open to the group’s opinion about what we listen to on the way there. On the way back, I get my own selections — books on tape by Eckhart Tolle, Tony Robbins…My husband says I’m so self-realized I’m practically levitating.’
And Downey, a Spiritual Psychology major who listens to Eckhart Tolle and “practically levitates”, is co-producing “The Bible”? This is pretty heretical – not to mention all her other New Age statements quoted in my other blogs.
This article by Kate Nesbitt gives a New Age definition of Spiritual Psychology. Note that 1) the writer graduated from the same school as Roma Downey. And 2) Downey has stated elsewhere recently that she hopes to become a “therapist” (similar to Kate Nesbitt, I assume).
Sooo… when did Downey supposedly become a Christian? Before or after getting a Master’s degree in Spiritual Psychology? And perhaps Downey received this degree near the same time she was “contemplating” a production of “The Bible”. Sounds to me like Downey is claiming to be a “Christian” in the same way Oprah Winfrey is claiming to be a “Christian.” It would be interesting to see Downey go on an Oprah show as a guest. Wouldn’t that be a hoot, seeing one famous New Ager who insists she’s a Christian talk with another famous New Ager who insists she’s a Christian.
Would Christians like “The Bible” if it were produced by Winfrey, or Shirley MacLaine, or Deepak Chopra? Seems to me like Roma Downey is just as bad.
FOR FURTHER READING
John-Roger Hinkins (aka John-Roger, J-R, born Roger Delano Hinkins)
Google list of many articles on Hinkins (Christian discernment articles, secular articles opposing Hinkins, secular articles favoring Hinkins)
Christian discernment articles exposing Hinkins:
Apologetics Index, Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness (MSIA)
Christian Research Institute (CRI), The Movement of Spiritual Inner Awareness (MSIA)
Secular counter-cult articles exposing Hinkins:
John Roger and MSIA (first of a series of articles)
MSIA articles about their own history and teachings:
Early History and Organization [of MSIA]
Neale Donald Walsch (co-author of the book Downey endorses above):
Berit Kjos’ revealing article exposing a number of Walsch’ occultic quotes
I am currently in the process of adding more info to this blog – keep checking back. And thank you for your patience. New info on Roma Downey and hubby Mark Burnett is coming out almost daily – it’s hard to keep up with!
© 2012-2014 Dave Mosher, all rights reserved. Excerpts may be quoted up to 300 words, as long as credit is given to my original blogs and links provided to my original blogs. Thank you.