Spiritual Research Network

Monday, December 11, 2006

Contemplative Prayer Or Terror?

Contemplative Prayer Or Terror?
by Roger Oakland

The Bible warns about false teachers that promote doctrines of demons in the last days before Jesus returns. [1] It would seem reasonable then, for Christians to be aware of the possibility of being seduced and deceived.

It is also a fact we are living at a time when many Christians seem to be convinced they cannot be deceived. A growing number have abandoned the idea that the return of Jesus Christ is at hand. They believe we are entering into a period when the Kingdom of God will be established here on earth by human effort. These “Kingdom Now” enthusiasts see church growth and the methods that promote it as a sign Christianity is being “reinvented” and becoming a more powerful force, day by day.

One of the ideas making vast inroads and redefining Christianity is the new “Emerging Church” movement. One of the popular ideas that is being promoted and is attractive to many is contemplative prayer. While proponents claim this method of praying helps them get closer to God, there are some reasons to express caution.
The Roots of Contemplative Prayer

What is contemplative prayer? Here is how one promoter defined it:
  • Contemplative prayer in its simplest form, is prayer in which you still your thoughts… This puts you in a better state to be aware of God’s presence, and it makes you better able to hear God’s voice correcting, guiding and directing you. [2]

If that definition sounds beneficial to one’s spiritual well-being consider another explanation that provides an even clearer understanding:
  • Its practitioners are trained to focus on an inner symbol that quiets the mind… When practitioners become skilled at this method of meditation, they undergo a deep trance state similar to auto-hypnosis. [3]...

Read entire article on Contemplative Prayer Or Terror?
at Understand The Times International