Observing New Age Environmental Religion

by Lewis Loflin

New Age religion in all its forms is the third most popular religion after Christianity and Islam. Since the fall of communism its practical atheism and socialist/Humanist tendencies have attracted scores of disgruntled former Marxists. New Age religion combines beliefs common to many modern atheists desperate for spiritual meaning in their empty lives: closet socialism/collectivism, mystified evolution, and pantheism (a form of atheism).

It's about "feeling" and rejects reason. It is highly anti-Christian with undertones of anti-Semitism and intolerant of any fixed values in particular Western values. This increasing atheistic pseudo-religion can be seen everywhere in particular environmentalism. It's all part of the age old process of syncretism.

No better example is the recent hit movie James Cameron's Avatar and it's New Age ecological pantheism and its Hollywood socialist vilification of capitalism. Even Bolivia's first indigenous president and communist, Evo Morales, praised Avatar for what he calls its message of saving the environment from (capitalist) exploitation. (Indepenant.ie January 17, 2010) Even the Vatican attacked the movie within days of the Pope promoting environmental hype himself.

Here we will look at a more recent "evolution" of New Age religion of the last 15-20 years and not the older 60s-80s version. Yes we still crystal power, ghosts, and space aliens, but that is being increasingly pushed aside. It's tends to be Karl Marx wed to Gaia and is more political than religious.

"The New Age Movement (still) includes some elements of older spiritual and religious traditions ranging from atheism and monotheism through classical pantheism, naturalistic pantheism, and panentheism to polytheism combined with science and Gaia philosophy: particularly archaeoastronomy, astronomy, ecology, environmentalism, the Gaia hypothesis, psychology, and physics...with particularly strong influences from East Asian religions, Gnosticism, Neopaganism, New Thought, Spiritualism, Theosophy, Universalism, and Western esotericism." (Wiki) In fact science is completely distorted and the scientific method is rejected for "faith" in scientific consensus.

I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.

Michael Crichton

Yet the "consensus" continues to crumble. To quote The Washington Times February 2, 2010:

The hitch is that the man-caused catastrophic global warming theory is dead...The dam broke with Climategate when hacked e-mails from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit revealed that global warming advocates had for years attempted to hide conflicting data and silence their professional critics. British authorities have determined that the university broke freedom-of-information laws by denying information to scientists seeking to check claims that global warming was caused by human activity.

Evidence is emerging that the data had been rigged all along. Russian analysts noted that British temperature calculations excluded data from 40 percent of Russian territory, much of which showed no increase in temperature in the past 50 years. The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also cherry-picked data, cutting Canadian data sources from 600 to 35 and relying on only one monitor for all of Canada above the Arctic Circle. This was done even though Canada operates 1,400 weather stations, 100 of which are in the Arctic.

...Meanwhile, climate change fanatics seek to blame capitalism and productivity for global warming, global cooling, too much snow, not enough snow, hurricanes, tornadoes and even the Haiti earthquake.

But socialism and environmentalism are simply religions that just refuse to die, empirical proof and reason be damned. It's a refuge and opiate for the urban atheist in search of meaning in their empty lives. Today it simply incorporates more socialism and dogmatic Humanism in a more happy spiritual package. It isn't about belief alone, but has become a way of life.

Another facet of New Age religious fads is sustainable lifestyles and it has become highly political. "Sustainable living is a lifestyle that attempts to reduce an individual's or society's use of the Earth's natural resource and his/her own resources. Practitioners of sustainable living often attempt to reduce their carbon footprint by altering methods of transportation, energy consumption and diet. Proponents of sustainable living aim to conduct their lives in manners that are consistent with sustainability, in natural balance and respectful of humanity's symbiotic relationship with the Earth's natural ecology and cycles. The practice and general philosophy of ecological living is highly interrelated with the overall principles of sustainable development." (Wiki)

In other words it's a pseudo-religion with rituals to be followed. Environmentalism like most religions is often anti-science and in particular technology is vilified and rejected. It's fused with socialist beliefs such as corporations are evil exploiters of nature. To quote paid hack Dr. James Hanson of NASA says about those rejecting the hypothesis of man-made global warming, they "should be tried for high crimes against humanity and nature." Now nature has become a being in its own right worthy not only of worship, but even having civil rights!

Why was Hanson paid $1 million? To quote, "while acting as a messenger from the esoteric world of computer climate models to the public and policymakers alike." Even liberal Christian churches lacking a belief in Christ are adopting environmental religion.

New Age Religion in general is a mish-mash of metaphysical, mostly Eastern-influenced mysticism such atheistic Buddhism and Hindu mysticism. This unites various pseudo-theologies, nature worship, and various secular-humanist philosophies. This movement claims religious tolerance and moral diversity, but also tends to be authoritarian and intolerant of traditional values and individual liberty. To quote others, "the main phrases (or "isms") that reveal the focal point of New Age thought are "feel-goodism" (do whatever feels good, as long as you are not hurting someone else), "moral relativism" (situational ethics), and "pluralism" (universal tolerance)." That pluralism increasingly doesn't include Western culture or values and its origins were the basis of Nazism.

Like ancient Gnosticism they claim man will "unite with god." In reality man is god and thus we will unite with man. New Age doctrine says that humans are currently estranged from god (man being god) due to a lack of insight concerning god's (man's) real nature and reality. (gnosis) "In New Age understanding, mankind is central. Humans are considered to be divine, as co-creators, and as the ultimate hope for the future of the world." Again mankind is central according to its promoters, the individual is not so individualism isn't tolerated just as it isn't under socialism. It's a religious cover for collectivism to its more socialist followers. Many eco-activists began as socialists.

As one writer claims, "New Age philosophy is complicated to define because there is no centralized hierarchy, doctrine, or membership. At its foundation, the New Age movement is a religious system with two main doctrines: Evolutionary Godhood and Global Unity." It's not complicated at all, just a lot atheist/socialist garbage in a new and improved package.

Evolutionary Godhood

"Generally, New Age thought supports the theory of organic evolution, but extends the concept to the evolution of the spirit. This is the concept of "Evolutionary Godhood," where the next step in evolution won't be physical, but spiritual. The principles of evolution are constantly moving mankind toward god-consciousness, where man and reality connect in unified enlightenment. The "fittest" already understand this reality, while the "unfit" (such as Christians and other proponents of dogmatic worldviews) act as a hindrance to evolutionary forces." Christianity is also a hindrance to Marxism.

Evolutionary Godhood means that mankind will soon see itself as god. This is often referred to as the "Christ principle" or "Christ consciousness." New Age teaches that we are basically good and inherently divine, and ultimately, we can create our own reality. In reality the state, being representative of the collective new divine man, will be god.

Global Unity

Man Unified With Man: One New Age principle is that we will all realize our proper divine relationship with one another and achieve pure harmony through the acceptance of this divine knowledge. With relational harmony comes economic unity. With economic unity, we can achieve political unity (a single world government) and spiritual unity (a one world religion).

Man Unified With Nature: Pantheism or god is everything, and everything is god. Therefore, nature is also part of god. We must be in harmony with nature. We must nurture it and be nurtured by it. Mankind is no different than any other animal. We must live in harmony with them, understand them, and learn from them. Actually, many in the New Age movement refer to the union of earth and nature as "Gaia."

It's nature worship: Gaia is revered, respected, and even worshipped as a god by some. American Indian rituals are also popular in the New Age movement because they focus on the elements of nature and man's relationship to them.

Worship of Man: Since man is divine by nature, all people can realize their "divinity" and contribute to the unified purpose of man, earth and nature. The ultimate goal in life is to fully realize our own divine goodness.

More confused atheism: The New Age god is impersonal and omnipresent: He (it) has not revealed himself (itself) to mankind, and therefore, mankind is not accountable to any notions of moral law or absolute truth. To quote, "There is no objective morality in the New Age philosophy. We should have tolerance for all systems of truth, meaning and purpose. We should create a world of pure relativism, where morality and religion are strictly relative to each person's individual notion of reality itself."

Partial extracts from www.allaboutspirituality.org