(441) EMERGING TRENDS IN THE CHURCH TODAY: RICHARD ROHR “ONED” WITH GOD

RICHARD ROHR: “ONED” WITH GOD

In our continued look at what is occurring within Evangelical churches today, I continue to learn new things about the mixing of Christianity with Eastern Religions and Philosophies.  Much of this new to me and the learuntitled-copyning process continues to develop. (photo from Richard Rohr’s website)

With that in mind, we have been looking at some of the following related themes commonly found in the church today (e.g. Emerging Church) within many Evangelical sources –

mysticism, Eastern Religious beliefs, the unity of everyone, postmodernism principles such as redefining “what is truth”, contemplative prayer practices, experience over Scripture, tradition over Scripture, ancient and early church teaching over Scripture (see a common theme?), alternate and new teachings over well-established historical teachings, ….etc.  

Here is an article posting from Richard Rohr’s Center for Action and Contemplation (cac.org) which discusses being “Oned with God” relating to Dualist and Nondual Thinking. See how much of the above characteristics you find that are in this article.  Also take note how an Evangelical institution like Nyack (C&MA) is exposing students to this type of teaching. Ultimately, take note of how these issues differ from God’s word.

DISCLAIMER: Keep in mind, the following article is one in which I don’t recommend. It is included here to demonstrate a deviation from the Bible and views commonly held within Evangelical churches today.  Follow-on articles will continue to define and break down the teachings of these concepts (e.g. dualist and non-dual principles).

Oned with God

Dualistic and Nondual Thinking

Oned with God
Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Over the next few days I’d like to share insights from my fellow CAC faculty members, Cynthia Bourgeault and James Finley. I trust Cynthia and Jim because they are truly grounded in the Christian AND wider wisdom TRADITION, Scripture, and their OWN authentic EXPERIENCE. They are part of the vibrant movement that is REBUILDING CHRISTIANITY from the bottom up, reclaiming long-forgotten or misunderstood teachings and practices.

Today Cynthia clarifies the various meanings of nondual consciousness:

If you find yourself a bit confused about what nonduality actually means, you’re not alone. A good deal of the confusion originates in the fact that the term nonduality is not a part of the innate vocabulary of the Christian spiritual tradition. It’s a “LOAN word”: a term IMPORTED from EASTERN RELIGIONS, which first became widely popular in the West during the second half of the twentieth century. A good deal of the confusion has emerged as folks have tried to discover what, if anything, in our Western Christian experience most closely corresponds to what the East is intending by nondual.

Within the Christian tradition, nonduality is sometimes described as nonpolarization or the capacity to be open, inclusive, and tolerant of paradox. This is an enormously practical understanding and a fundamental prerequisite for any kind of skillful prophetic work in today’s pluralistic culture. However, many schemas for the stages of development suggest that the capacity to tolerate ambiguity emerges long before the actual nondual or unitive stage is reached.

Another popular approach is to equate NONDUALITY with a MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE. By definition, ALL MYSTICAL EXPERIENCE is nondual: the classic descriptions of mystical experience inevitably feature that brief, overpowering sense of the BOUNDARIES DISSOLVING and finding oneself AT ONE WITH EVERYTHING. The problem, however, is that most mystical experiences are temporary. And since these mystical experiences are by definition ec-static (i.e., taking one outside oneself), they tend to create the impression that nondual is by nature blissful, exotic, or an “altered state of consciousness”—all of the above being categories that betray an “experience/experiencer” dichotomy still firmly in the driver’s seat—and hence, alas, no nondual attainment.

The third major approach is to see nondual as basically the same as what Christian tradition has classically known as “the UNITIVE state,” the highest level of spiritual attainment according to the traditional map of purgative, illuminative, and unitive. Both Eastern and Western traditions hint at a permanent, irreversible shift in the seat of selfhood and in the perception that flows out from this new identity. The former sense of self dissolves, and in its place there arises a capacity to live a flowing, unboundaried life in which the person becomes “ONED” with God (as Julian of Norwich famously expressed it) and oned with ONE’S NEIGHBOR. However, in the East, the experience tends to be monistic: one discovers one’s own deepest essence and nature as identical with that Oneness—“I am that.” In the West, the unitive state is looked upon as relational: a mystical marriage, in which one is fully joined to God in love, subsumed in God through that love—but one does not become God. In the Western Christian tradition, nondual realization is always one of union (“two become one”), not identity.

Gateway to Silence:
We are oned in love.

Reference:
Adapted from Cynthia Bourgeault, The Heart of Centering Prayer: Nondual Christianity in Theory and Practice (Shambhala: 2016), 43-47.

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Dr. Danaher publishes essay in Oneing

Posted by Fernando.Arzola on Wednesday October 29, 2014

1995Dr. James Danaher, Professor of Philosophy, publishes “Transgression” in Oneing: An Alternative Orthodoxy (Vol 2, No 1), a bi-annual literary journal of the Rohr Institute.

Richard Rohr, in his introduction to this edition of Oneing, states: “It seems that we must fail, and even ‘transgress,’ and then desire mercy and love because of that very transgression.”

The paradox is that transgression is a necessary part of the transformative process. Transgression can be “sin” that separates us from the Divine in ourselves and in others, preventing us from entering into the flow of relationship…. At other times, what may be perceived as transgression is the necessary movement across false boundaries that keep us from God. Until we experience the pain of separation from Divine Reality, we often don’t do the necessary work to move beyond our small narcissistic selves into the much larger reality of a Truth that frees and transforms us.

This issue of Oneing includes original articles by RICHARD ROHR, ROB BELL, CYNTHIA BOURGEAULT, JAMES DANAHER, Russ Hudson, Diarmuid O’Murchu, Bill Plotkin, Robert Sardello, Avideh Shashaani, and others.

=> A reference to Richard Rohr’s website (cac.org) takes the reader from Nyack’s site to Rohr’s site for more information: http://store.cac.org/Oneing-Transgression_p_343.html

The next posting in this serious, we will look at what is meant by dual and non-dual teachings as well as other items brought up in this article which may be more closely associated with Eastern Teachings. This current posting was more to show the relationships creeping into the church with teachings more closely aligned with ancient Roman Catholicism and Eastern Religious views.

=> For now, listen to John MacArthur’s view on these issues mysticism and looking deep inside of you for truth instead of the Bible…etc., popping up in churches, seminaries, Christian colleges (e.g. Nyack) across Evangelicalism:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTEm9NI17Do

 

=> Another view by John Piper on the problems with mysticism in the church and in Bible colleges today – things that get him “ticked” on what is happening within the church today.  Piper’s response is a bit convoluted and he wanders from time to time on what exactly he means, but he does drive home similar point in this video clip:

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