Popular Angels and the Occult

By: Dr. John Ankerberg and Dr.John Weldon; ©2012
Surveying the different ways in which the popular angels promote occultism would take more space than we have, so we have chosen several pertinent illustrations.

Popular Angels and the Occult

Surveying the different ways in which the popular angels promote occultism would take more space than we have, so we have chosen several pertinent illustrations. In Angel Wisdom, people are encouraged to use mantras, mandalas, shamanistic vision quests, contacting one’s power animal (a spirit guide who appears in the form of an animal), manipulation of chakras, and psychic healing.[1] In Angelic Messenger Cards, people learn to accept contacting the dead.[2] In Creating with the Angels, people are told, “Dream time is spirit time and offers a great opportunity to play with the angels…. Allow the angels to help you interpret your dreams.”[3] In The Angels Within Us, angels are said to take people deep into altered states of consciousness in order to establish contact with them.[4] The angels also support New Age medicine and occult holistic health practices.[5]

The books of theosophist and spiritist Geoffrey Hodson are also popular in angel circles. In 1924, Hodson was contacted by an “angel” calling itself “Bethelda,” who gave him material for half a dozen books, including the popular The Brotherhood of Angels and Men and The Kingdom of the Gods. In his Clairvoyant Investigations he writes, “I have myself confirmed that these superphysical domains contain innumerable nonphysical beings, such as angels and nature splits….”[6] The teachings of these “angels” encourage theosophical occultism, not biblical truth. The popular angels also promote necromancy, or contacting the dead for divination, and occult magic.[7]

In one case, where the angels assume a function similar to the demons contacted in magic ritual, people are told, “You can also use this technique to avoid people you fear and loathe. When you use this [magic] satchel, repeat the affirmation, ‘There is no such personality in the universe: Then put the name of the person who owns that personality in the satchel.”[8]

Many popular angels also encourage automatic writing, dictation, or speaking in order to get their messages published and in circulation.[9] For example, Karen Goldman, author of Angel Voices and The Angel Book, believes that “the angels are directing and guiding her writing.”[10] She used the “Sedona Method RELEASE Technique,” from the Sedona Institute in Sedona, Arizona, to contact an “inner angel” that now guides her writing.[11] Sally Sharp, author of 100 Ways to Attract the Angels, was also led into automatic writing by her angels.[12] Meredith L. Young-Sowers writes, “For well over a decade, I’ve been taught by an angelic presence that describes himself/herself simply as Mentor, meaning ‘teacher.’” Many of Mentor’s verbatim teachings are given in her books.[13]

Rosemary Ellen Guiley, author of Angels of Mercy and many books on the occult and mysticism, such as The Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft, and Harper’s Encyclopedia of Mystical and Paranormal Experiences, recalls that her life has been directed by unseen presences, which she interprets as angels, who have guided her into her career:

For many years, I have felt the presence of guiding beings in my life…. My initial intuitive sense was that these helping beings were “angels,” and that is what I have always called them…. My strongest sense of the presence of angels concerns my work as a writer…. I feel that angels facilitate my work in numerous ways…. I am assisted and influenced by angels. I am grateful for their help, and I acknowledge them daily in my meditation. I sense a small group of angels who are around me all the time, connected to my personal and professional lives. They are joined by other angels who come and go depending on circumstances…. When I began work on Angels of Mercy the angels came out in force. It seemed I had a small army looking over my shoulder to weigh in with their various influences…. In addition to my writing, I lecture a great deal, and I feel the guiding presence of a “speaking angel.”… I sense his presence. He is a facilitator who helps me organize and deliver talks.[14]

The name of Guiley’s “speaking angel” is “Plato,” and he does indeed speak through her, which is similar to many prominent New Age leaders today:

As I began my talk, I felt a distinct shift in my consciousness, as though part of me were displaced to one side. In addition, I could feel the weight of an invisible presence on my shoulders, as though a being perched there…. I talked for two hours without looking at a single note, and got rave comments from the audience. “You don’t know it, but you’re a born teacher!” …As time has gone on, I have been increasingly aware of this shift in consciousness when I deliver a talk. Occasionally, someone who is clairvoyant will come up to me afterward and ask me if I know I have an angel or a being standing off to one side of me. “Yes,” I say, “that’s my speaking angel!”[15]

This suggests that a good deal, or perhaps a majority, of the popular angel literature is actually from the “angels” themselves. But then, what field of the occult is not infiltrated by fallen angels? Astrology and other forms of divination, ceremonial magic, mediumship, séances, witchcraft, satanism, psychic development, and shamanism are all overrun with fallen angels and their deceptions. As Harper’s Encyclopedia of Mystical and Paranormal Experiences observes, “In New Age occult and religious beliefs, angels have made a comeback in popularity. They are portrayed in karmic aspects of astrology, channeled, meditated upon, and said to exist in spirit realms. Angelic forces are invoked in magic rituals and various magical systems and witchcraft.”[16]

This text also states, “The popular view holds that angels are benevolent beings and are different from demons….”[17] Indeed, the primary goal of demons is to confuse people as to who they are and as to their sphere of operation. When people are convinced that the occult is actually angelic, they will be much more willing to experiment. As a result, large numbers of people who contact angels are slowly but surely being led into the occult.[18]

Perhaps the most troubling aspect of all this is that the “angels” specifically hope to reach children. For example, the author of The Circle of Angels was taken over by a spirit who told her through automatic writing, “I am the archangel Michael and together we will save the children.”[19] The end result was the series of Little Angel Books, which attempts to help children personally call upon angels through occult meditation.

The popular angels are also active through various divination practices. These are as old as mankind and include ancient oracles like the one at Delphi (through whom the spirits or “gods” spoke), the I Ching, tarot cards, runes, and the Ouija board. Divination can be practiced through everything from bird behavior and animal entrails to skull contours (phrenology), palms (palmistry), simple dots (geomancy), and sticks (dowsing).

Today, the angels have entered the business of divination on a large scale. In Alma Daniel’s, Timothy Wyllie’s, and Andrew Ramer’s Ask Your Angels, we find a five-step method called the GRACE Process, using the divination method termed the “Angel Oracle,” which is essentially a three-part deck of cards. The first set of cards are four archangels, and the random selection of a card is said to connect you with the creative dreaming or problem-solving aspects of that specific angel. The second set of cards has 16 angels. When one of these is selected, it “activates” that angel to help the person select from the third set of cards, which has 24 activities or situations. Once one of these is chosen, the person is to pursue the card’s instructions, knowing that the angel from the second set of cards will guide and direct him to fulfill third-card requirements.

Another system of divination is the “Angel Cards,” which includes a board game called “The Game of Transformation.” It was created while the originators were living at the New Age Findhorn community in Scotland. This game is also intended to establish contact with angels, predict the future, and to develop “higher” consciousness.[20]

Divination lessons are also found in the book Angelic Messengers Cards: A Divination System for Spiritual Discovery, which was developed in association with a spirit guide called “Mentor.” With this system, one uses cards with pictures of flowers, which angels will then use for the person’s spiritual growth. “The cards act as a ‘living prayer’ to help us resolve problems, develop inner trust, affirm ourselves, and renew and awaken the spiritual energy of love…. The angelic messenger cards are a divinely-inspired tool for self-discovery and… carry the seeds of both personal and planetary transformation.”[21]

Using any kind of divination method is, in the words of occult authority W. B. Crow, “nearly always dangerous.”[22] To our way of thinking, the basis for this conclusion is, because divination links one to demons, the derived information is frequently bad advice, and because it encourages people to make harmful decisions that they otherwise might not.

The popular angels are also greatly influential in the field of channeling. Channeling “spirit guides” is now a billion-dollar U.S. industry. But channeling angels is no different than channeling spirit guides. In both cases one is possessed by a control spirit, just as if one were a medium at a séance. This is why the messages and phenomena found in angel channeling and in mediumism are essentially the same. Yet most promoters of angel channeling claim that there is a distinction in terms of the entity that is being channeled. Mediums are said to channel the discarnate dead, which is different from the channeled angels, who are thought to be a more spiritually advanced life form. Spiritist Meredith L. Young-Sowers (mentioned previously) claims, “Talking to angels is the natural extension of the channeling phenomenon of the late 1970s and ‘80s….”[23] But whether one terms them angels, spirit guides, or discarnates, it is essentially the same phenomenon—demonic possession in order to accomplish the demons’ purposes.

Spirit guides and angels have been easily linked in the literature. “We all have spiritual guides, angels who take us to higher levels of consciousness and knowledge….Our guides may take on physical presence in a dream, during meditation, or in the form of a spiritual advisor or teacher whom we may unexpectedly encounter…. [reader affirmation] ‘I am open to my spiritual guides, and I greet then with excitement, respect, wonder, and love.”[24]

Catholic Roseann Cervelli claims to have been channeling angels for over a decade from her home in Martinsville, New Jersey, and some of her channeled revelations were published in Voices of Love. How did this begin? After being raised a Catholic and developing a “strong sense of spirituality,” she studied the trance revelations of medium and psychic Edgar Cayce. She also learned methods of psychic healing and pursued “Christ consciousness.” Eventually she received the laying on of hands from a Catholic priest who became her spiritual mentor. When he laid his hands upon Cervelli, she experienced a kind of psychic opening. “After that, for the next year or so, I studied with the priest and other likeminded people. I would have a kind of mystical experience. I would be pulled into a oneness and meditative state…. These were my first experiences with the spiritual energies—very loving and very embracing.”[25]

Eventually she met a medium who channeled a spirit named “Matthew.” After taking “Matthew’s” occult advice, Cervelli progressed to a form of psychic revelation in which she would receive “energy” coming through her head. Through automatic writing she eventually produced Voices of Love. After “Matthew,” she met a spirit named “Elliott” and later an entity who introduced itself by saying, “My name is John, and I have come to teach you about self-love.” When “Matthew,” “Elliott,” and “John” decided to leave, they told Cervelli that she would now be indwelt by a group of angels. And she has been channeling “angels” ever since.[26] One wonders how she could tell the difference.

Thus, among the standard messages these “angels” want to give people is to inform them that, “We are not separate from God. We are God…. Not only is God inside of us, but he is us.”[27]


  1. See Terry Lynn Taylor and Mary Beth Crain, Angel Wisdom: 365 Meditations and Insights from the Heavens (NY: HarperCollins, 1994), June, 18, 28; July 8, 22; October 20.
  2. Meredith L. Young-Sowers, Angelic Messenger Cards: A Divination System for Spiritual Discovery (Walpole, NH: Stillpoint, 1993), p. 31.
  3. Terry Lynn Taylor, Creating With the Angels: An Angel-Guided Journey into Creativity (Tiburon, CA: H. J. Kramer, 1993), pp. 39, 41.
  4. John Randolph Price, The Angels Within Us: A Spiritual Guide to the Twenty-two Angels that Govern Our Lives (NY: Fawcett, 1993), p. 16.
  5. Angels II: Beyond the Light, NBC special, 30 October 1994, 7:00 p.m., host, Stefanie Powers.
  6. Geoffrey Hodson, Clairvoyant Investigations (Wheaton, IL: Theosophical, 1984), p. 2.
  7. e.g., Don Fearheiley, Angels Among Us (NY: Avon, 1993), p. 94; Price, The Angels Within Us, pp. 10-17, 32-33; 2511:80-81, 111-112.
  8. Terry Lynn Taylor, Messengers of Light: The Angel’s Guide to Spiritual Growth (Tiburon, CA: H. J. Kramer, 1990), p. 81.
  9. Young-Sowers, Angelic Messenger Cards, pp. 14, 25; Phil Phillips, Angels, Angels, Angels (Lancaster, PA: Starburst, 1994), p. 122.
  10. Karen Goldman, Angel Voices (NY: Simon & Schuster, 1993), back cover flap.
  11. Karen Goldman, The Angel Book (NY: Simon & Schuster, 1992), p. 5; Goldman, Angel Voices, p. 6.
  12. Angels II: Beyond the Light, NBC special, 30 October 1994, 7:00 p.m., host, Stefanie Powers.
  13. Young-Sowers, Angelic Messenger Cards, p. 18.
  14. 104 Rosemary Ellen Guiley, Angels of Mercy (NY: Pocket Books, 1994), pp. xi-xiv, cf. p. 90.
  15. Ibid., pp. 97-98.
  16. Ibid., p. 21.
  17. Ibid.
  18. cf. Price, The Angels Within Us; Taylor and Crain, Angel Wisdom; Guiley, Angels of Mercy; Angels II: Beyond the Light, NBC special, 30 October 1994, 7:00 p.m., host, Stefanie Powers.
  19. 109 Taylor, Messengers of Light, ch. 14
  20. Ibid.
  21. Young-Sowers, Angelic Messenger Cards, pp. 24-25.
  22. W. B. Crow, A History of Magic, Witchcraft and Occultism (North Hollywood, CA: Wilshire, 1968), p. 29.
  23. Young-Sowers, Angelic Messenger Cards), p. 22, emphasis added.
  24. Taylor and Crain, Angel Wisdom, Dec. 9.
  25. Guiley, Angels of Mercy, pp. 98-99.
  26. Ibid., pp. 98-102.
  27. Ibid., p. 105.


  1. Velda Hilt on December 7, 2015 at 2:55 pm

    I feel your show is informative.

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