In 1993 author James Redfield published The Celestine Prophesy. This book is a page turner, the exciting adventure of a man searching for the spiritual truths found in an ancient manuscript from Peru. I actually thought it was a true story when I read it. It turned out to be a spiritual allegory. Basically the protagonist follows a series of "signs", one coincidence after another that leads him on his destined path. The theme is that mankind is evolving toward a new spiritual awakening, the end result being that we will no longer have bodies but will be pure spirits.
This sounds hokey, yes? No one bought this premise, right? At the time that I read it, probably the year it was published or soon after, my dad told me it was New Age. Well, I didn't want to hear that. The story was so exciting, and I honestly believed that these types of books were really teaching "universal spiritual truths." When I thought of New Age, Shirley MacLaine, crystals, and reincarnation came to mind. I was never interested in crystals and didn't believe in reincarnation. I did feel uncomfortable with the whole idea that people will evolve to no longer have bodies, and I had forgotten all about that until I started retracing my New Age/occult path in my mind.
Surely after 20 years all of this nonsense has been forgotten, with no lasting, harmful effects? It was a silly phase of youth, and I am over it. Um, no. In fact, just a few posts back (Nov. 6, Belief.), I used the word synchronicity and asserted that "There are no coincidences." What I was talking about in this article was a "Holy Spirit moment", but I used lingo and philosophy directly from A Celestine Prophesy!
This idea of there being no coincidences, of everything and everyone being related, literally being one, is a core teaching of New Age philosophy. If you keep your eyes and ears and intuition open, you will be given signs on your journey to spiritual awakening. The right people, circumstances, and things you need will all fall into place, as if by magic. The Universe will conspire to get you exactly what you want. And truly, book after book crossed my path, each feeding my spiritual hunger. But what I was being fed was a doctrine of lies. I thought I was reading about "universal spiritual truths", those truths common to all of the world's religions. And that is precisely the goal of the New Age: one world religion.
A few years ago I danced to a song, "Gypsy" by Khan Nal, with these lyrics: We don't need your lost religion to tell us who we are. We're all...one! One people, one spirit, one earth... And who does New Age religion say we really are? It says we are God.