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Posts Tagged ‘Catholic mystics’

(revised 03/16/13)

Click here for my new blog on David Crowder’s book Praise Habit, in which he teaches occultish, contemplative Lectio Divina to young teens.
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Here’s the skinny on the heretical Emergent David Crowder and his band. David Crowder played at Willoughby Hills Friends Church, in the  EFC-ER (Evangelical Friends Church-Eastern Region), on 09/18/11. My question is WHY? Why did this heretical musician play there?

Note – the following blog describes the Roman Catholic  practices of David Crowder. But this is only the tip of Crowder’s destructive theological iceberg. Crowder is heavily promoting  postmodern (Emerging/Emergent/Emergence) teachings. We can see this on his website, as well as in his participation at numerous postmodern events.

Click here for the original critique, by Defending Contending, copied verbatim. I have emphasized certain points by bolding, and inserted comments in [brackets].

Following is the Defending Contending expose:

And now the latest pockmark to appear on the already scarred face of CCM comes from one of evangelicalism’s favorite “worship leaders,” David Crowder of the David Crowder Band.

    Crowder, who is the

author of the contemplative-promoting book, Praise Habit (referring to the habits worn by Catholic nuns),

also participated in a contemplative/emergent conference with the likes of

Leonard Sweet, Chuck Fromm (founder of the event and of Worship Leader magazine), emerging leader Sally Morgenthaler, Brennan Manning proponent Michael W. Smith . . . contemplative/emerging Marva Dawn, Alpha Course leader and contemplative proponent Todd Hunter, and others.

(See more about this from the source Lighthouse Trails.)

But Crowder’s lack of discernment doesn’t end here. He recently granted an interview to the Roman Catholic “movement” known as Life Teen (whose promo video was previously featured on DefCon here) in which they state on their website:

Because of our deep Eucharistic devotion, Life Teen has developed a spirituality that is

  • 100% Catholic
  • Obedient to the Magisterium
  • Centered on the Eucharist
  • Scriptural
  • Liturgical
  • Catechetical
  • Sacramental
  • Focused on social justice

And:

On December 9, 2007, [at] the Feast of St. Juan Diego, we consecrated the Life Teen movement to the Blessed Virgin Mary and will renew our consecration annually by prayerfully participating in the St. Louis Marie de Montfort Total Consecration. [Emphasis theirs]

And:

Our entire ministry is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary so that we may be led to the feet of her son with the obedience she exemplified.

If you’re wondering why Crowder (or any evangelical for that matter) would grant an interview with the idolatrous Romanists whose teachings and beliefs are antithetical to biblical Christianity, wonder no more. Crowder–whose music may very well be in your car stereo or on your teenager’s ipod right now–concedes in this interview a rather interesting source of influence in the “formation of [his] faith.”

Here’s the question from the interviewer Matt Smith:

You are not Catholic, but on your “Illuminate” album, you sing a prayer of St. Francis of Assisi. What’s your connection?

Here’s the evangelical “worship leader’s” answer:

Much of the Catholic traditions and writings have been influential in my formation of faith and to be quite contradictory of what was stated earlier, I’ve found much inspiration there. St. Francis is a figure I’m equally attracted to and repelled by. I long for his powers of disassociation from the trappings of “stuff.” I’m beset with consumption and materialism, and he is a compelling symbol of contentment. His contentment and way of suffering terrify me.

You can read the whole interview here.

Let this be a warning fellow pilgrims, not all that glitters is gold, and not everything labeled “Christian,” that’s sold in “Christian” bookstores, and that’s played on “Christian” pop-music stations is what it’s purported to be.

Be cautious that you are not influenced by those who’ve been influenced by Rome. Be careful little eyes what you see; be careful little ears what you hear; and always be sure to choose your entertainment wisely.

FOR FURTHER READING

David Crowder Band Appears at Emergent YS Convention in Nashville (May 2004)

Heretical musician David Crowder’s book “Praise Habit” teaches occultish, contemplative Lectio Divina to young teens

 

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I just came across a book by Frank X. Tuoti, entitled Why Not Be a Mystic? (Crossroad, 1995). This book is chalk full of references to mysticism – especially the brand of interfaith mysticism popularized by Thomas Merton. Crossroad is a Catholic publisher; Tuoti’s book is obviously addressed to “Christians” (Catholic and Protestant).

The back cover states:

“Frank X. Tuoti, a former Trappist who lived and studied with [Catholic/Buddhist mystic] Thomas Merton and now lives in Tuscon, Arizona, teaches Centering Prayer and offers retreats on Christian mysticism and the spirituality of the Desert and Eastern Church Fathers. He is a member of the Tuscon Society of Spiritual Directors.”

The top of the front cover says: “In THE COMING AGE [emphasis mine], we must all become mystics – or become nothing at all”- Karl Rahner. And the page immediately following the dedication says simply: “The only cure for the angst of modern man is mysticism” – Thomas Merton.

Following is a review of Tuoti’s book by some New Agers.  [I do not recommend this website, but for researchers it provides a search window which leads to a great deal of info on labyrinths, centering prayer, etc.]

Why Not Be a Mystic? (Crossroad, 1995)

This book makes a good case for partaking in this spiritual adventure. The author, a former Trappist monk who lived and studied with Thomas Merton, writes clearly and cogently about mysticism as the high point of the Christian calling. It is not just reserved for monks and nuns. The mystical state involves “an experience of God in a gifted intuition” and “a response to the habitual presence of God.” Tuoti examines the spiritual benefits of silence, prayer, the awakened heart, and the link between contemplation and compassion. The mystical dimension of faith, according to the author, will be the deep and life-renewing wellspring of Christianity in the years to come.

In 1997, Tuoti became even more bold, showing the interfaith and New Age agenda of Merton and himself. Check out the New Age review of Tuoti’s followup book:

The Dawn of the Mystical Age (Crossroad, 1997)

In a follow-up to Why Not Be a Mystic? retreat leader Frank X. Tuoti has written this book. He believes that we have already entered a new era of higher consciousness [the New Age] characterized by the rediscovery of the sacred feminine, a democratization of spirituality, an emphasis upon the intuitive faculties of the right brain, a yearning for world peace, and a journey into the mystery of our inner selves.

This dawning of the mystical age, according to Tuoti, is already sending ripples of change throughout Catholicism even though the hierarchy is still trying to hold on to power. He notes, “the church will undergo considerable pain and anguish as it moves into THE NEW AGE [emphasis mine].” Tuoti peppers this invitation to enlightenment with quotations from some of his favorite seers including the German Jesuit mystic and Zen master Hugo Enomiya-Lassalle, philosopher Karl Jaspers, mystic Andrew Harvey, Catholic thinker Teilhard de Chardin, Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, Indian poet Rabindranth Tagore, and Sannyasin Bede Griffiths.

Amazon lists these as the only published books by Tuoti. Yet I found the following book at:

http://www.sacredheartboise.org/adult/small_cc.htm

Awakening the Mystic Within, by Frank X. Tuoti

This generous collection of beautiful and inspiring reflections is designed to fire the hearts and stir the souls of those beginning the contemplative journey. Leads small faith-sharing communities to investigate the rich mystical heritage and tradition of the Catholic Church. (6 sessions)

A more recent reference to Tuoti is found at:

http://www.mertoncenter.org/ITMS/newsletter15-2.htm
[The newsletter is full of references to Thomas Merton and his interfaith teachings. And Tuoti is still devoted to Merton as we see here]:

Merton Happenings: On April 8 [2008], Frank Tuoti gave a presentation on “Thomas Merton: The Jesus Lama” at the Episcopal Church of the Apostles in Tucson.

And a 2010 person search points to info showing Tuoti is age 82 and possibly living in Tuscon, AZ:

http://www.123people.com/s/frank+tuoti

Let us turn our sights to Thomas Merton himself. What Richard Foster and Renovare is to evangelical Contemplative Spirituality, Thomas Merton is to Catholic Contemplative Spirituality and interfaith Contemplative Spirituality.

For a bio of Merton, see:

http://www.mertoncenter.org/chrono.htm

The Merton Center is a good starting point for researching what these Contemplative Spirituality apostates are up to currently. And it paints a picture of where evangelical contemplatives are headed in their slide into apostasy.

Click here for an excellent, detailed Christian expose of Thomas Merton.

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I have been seeing numerous references to Catholic mysticism when researching Spiritual Formation, the Emergent/Emerging Church, and occult Contemplative Spirituality.

Another quasi-Christian stream of mysticism is Quaker mysticism. Yet Quaker mysticism is not nearly as “popular” as Catholic mysticism.  Even Spiritual Formation pioneer Richard Foster (who has labeled himself a Quaker) – has quoted Catholic mystics much more often than Quaker mystics.

There is also another, more recent quasi-Christian stream of mysticism: evangelical mysticism – A.W. Tozer, etc. This stream also is not nearly as popular as Catholic mysticism.

I Googled the following search strings – here are my results (I’m sure there are overlapping results, as well as results which are not actually relevant):

[“Richard Foster” “Catholic mystics”] – about 10,500 results
[“Richard Foster” “Quaker mystics”] – about 94 results
[“Richard Foster” “evangelical mystics”] – about 483  results

[“Spiritual Formation” “Catholic mystics”] – about 2,590 results
[“Spiritual Formation” “Quaker mystics”] – about 66 results
[“Spiritual Formation” “evangelical mystics”] – about 87 results

[“Emerging Church” “Catholic mystics”] – about 12,000 results
[“Emerging Church” “Quaker mystics”] – about 60 results
[“Emerging Church” “evangelical mystics”] – about 487 results

[“Emergent Church” “Catholic mystics”] – about 3,330 results
[“Emergent Church” “Quaker mystics”] – about 47 results
[“Emergent Church” “evangelical mystics”] – about 204  results

[“Contemplative Spirituality” “Catholic mystics”] – about 10,000 results
[“Contemplative Spirituality” “Quaker mystics”] – about 61 results
[“Contemplative Spirituality” “evangelical mystics”] – about 28 results

[“centering prayer” “Catholic mystics”] – about 10,500 results
[“centering prayer” “Quaker mystics”]  – about 82 results
[“centering prayer” “evangelical mystics”]  – about 26 results

[“labyrinth” “Catholic mystics”] – about 9,630 results
[“labyrinth” “Quaker mystics”] – 8 results
[“labyrinth” “evangelical mystics”] –  about 6 results

[“occult” “Catholic mystics”] – about 11,900 results
[“occult” “Quaker mystics”] – about 6 results
[“occult” “evangelical mystics”] –  about 120 results

[“New Age” “Catholic mystics”] – about  13,800 results
[“New Age” “Quaker mystics”] – about 72 results
[“New Age” “evangelical mystics”] –  about 197 results

[“heretical” “Catholic mystics”] – about 11,300 results
[“heretical” “Quaker mystics”] –  about 37  results
[“heretical” “evangelical mystics”] –  about 280 results

[“false teachings” “Catholic mystics”] – about 1,090 results
[“false teachings” “Quaker mystics”] –  3 results
[“false teachings” “evangelical mystics”] –  about  35  results

[“apostasy” “Catholic mystics”] – about 11,800 results
[“apostasy” “Quaker mystics”] – 10 results
[“apostasy” “evangelical mystics”] –  about 285 results

Other Christian writers have also made the connection between Catholic mystics and Quaker mystics. For example, Ken Silva refers to Spiritual Formation’s “so-called “spiritual disciplines” largely culled from heretical Roman Catholic and Quaker mystics.” His great article on this can be found at:

http://apprising.org/2008/08/28/meditating-on-contemplativecentering-prayer/

All Catholic mystics are dangerous. But undoubtedly the most dangerous Catholic mystic is Thomas Merton. Merton makes no apology for his hybrid Catholic/Buddhist worldview. And Merton introduced Hindu-based “centering prayer” to Catholics and Protestants alike. See the following exposes of Merton and his followers:

http://www.lighthousetrailsresearch.com/merton.htm
http://www.apostasyalert.org/Merton.htm

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