The New Age: An Emerging Worldview in Society – Program 5

By: Brooks Alexander, Dave Hunt, Tal Brooke; ©1988
What kinds of new age ideas are altering psychiatric treatment in America? Are there issues involved in the mental health debate that Christians should be concerned about?

How is the New Age Movement Affecting the Treatment of Mental Health?

Ankerberg: Welcome! We’re talking about the New Age, which has been featured in Time magazine and many other magazines. You’re hearing it on television, in the movies, etc. Faith healers, channelers, space travelers, crystals. What’s going on in our country? What is this all about? And today we’re going to look at one specific area. How is the culture being affected? Mainly, our psychiatrists? What kind of counseling is being given from the philosophy that evolves out of the New Age. Brooks, I want to come to you here. There are two “godfathers” of psychological theory — Freud and Carl Gustav Jung. These two men are the top of the pinnacle. And Freud obviously thought that the unconscious was full of evil. He wanted to stay away from that area. And Jung thought the unconscious was just the opposite. It was full of potential. Freud was against religious experiences. Jung was for psychic religious experiences. Freud was the leader and the protege was supposed to take over but they hit a crossroads right here. And how has that affected the rest of psychology today? What was behind that? I think the people would really like to know.
Alexander: Well, there was a fundamental disagreement, as you mentioned, between Freud and Jung over the reality and the meaning of the so-called “mystical” or “psychic” or “supernatural” phenomena. Freud was the one who won the immediate power struggle in a sense, because he became the dominating influence over psychology during his generation. Freud was the secularist. He was the atheist. He was the materialist. He was the one that carried out an attack on religion. He cleared the ground, as it were, as a part of the advance of secularism, ready for the infilling of this cosmic wisdom that Jung represented, and he elaborated his theories so when the time came they could be in place. But Jung basically was out from the beginning to articulate a form of occultism in scientific and psychological language. His very first studies at the university of the workings of the human mind were under­taken in the context of studying a medium who was a channel — they didn’t call it such in those days — for possessing spirits. One of his first works was called Seven Sermons to the Dead and he begins by saying that he felt this enormous crowded presence as of the spirits in the room. And it was just an overwhelming experience for him and he had to speak, to speak out, to address these spirits of the dead who were filling his room. So he has, from the beginning, been heavily involved in a study of occultism. He’s got a lot of experiential background in that and he set out to turn this kind of philosophy and the ideas behind occultism into a psychologized language which could be picked up and used by the scientific establishment, as indeed is happening today. Here is one of Jung’s best known books and he titles it simply and straightforwardly Psychology and the Occult. So Jung has basically set up the psychological framework for reinterpreting occultism into the New Age Movement which is basically the process that is taking place — that the New Age Movement is doing — is expressing occult ideas in the language of the age we live in.
Ankerberg: Give me some examples of Carl Gustav Jung as he was growing up. You guys were sharing with me a little bit of how he got started in this and I think the people would find it fascinating how he intro­duced this to Freud.
Hunt: Well, Carl Jung was raised in a home where the poltergeists, demonic, you know. You saw the film “Poltergeist.” That’s the kind of a house he grew up in. And the demonic activity was so intense that his mother kept a daily journal of it. She grew up in a similar house where she had to hold the spirits at bay long enough for her father, Jung’s grandfather, who was a Protestant minister, to write out his Sunday morning sermons. She had to hold the spirits off so he could write out his Sunday morning sermons! Now, he was a Master Mason, he was an occultist, a medium himself, and his portrait was on the wall of the home in which Carl Jung grew up. And Carl Jung, as a small boy, used to meditate upon his grandfa­ther’s portrait until his grandfather stepped out of the frame and they walked off, arm-in-arm, into the woods to have their mystical experienc­es. Now, this is the background to Jung. Now, the falling out that he had with Freud came over whether religious experiences ought to be pursued or whether they were real and so forth. And Freud in fact believed that they were all an illusion. And so the first time they met in 1909 they were standing by a bookcase, and Carl Jung said to Freud, “Well, I’ll show you. You’re going to hear a shot come right out of this bookcase.” And in a few mo­­­ments…Bang! And Freud the great master faints dead away. The guy was a basket case. I mean, he had so many phobias and neuroses that it’s incredible, which he projected on the rest of us….
Brooke: He made Woody Allen look sane! Right?
Hunt: Yeah, right. Which became the foundation of what so many people accepted. The second time they met in 1912, even worse things happened, and Freud fainted dead away again. Now, you have to under­stand, he had an obsessive fear of death. He was a medical doctor but he couldn’t look at a corpse. He couldn’t go to a funeral. And when he came out of this faint, he accused Carl Jung of harboring an unconscious death wish against him. Which Carl Jung came to believe when in a dream he killed Siegfried, the Wagnerian hero, which he then interpreted — “dream inter­pretation.” You’ve got it in your Chris­tian bookstores today — as Sigfreud. And under the guilt from that, for the next six years he teetered on the brink of what he himself described as total psychotic breakdown.
Ankerberg: Because he felt he was going to kill Freud.
Hunt: Right. Yes.
Ankerberg: Because of that dream. Keep going.
Hunt: And at that time, the Holy Ghost came to him in the form of a dove….
Ankerberg: In a vision.
Hunt: He had all kinds of spirit entities, as Brooks said, the whole room was full of them. And that was when he picked up “Philemon the demon,” his spirit guide. Of course, he doesn’t call him that, he just simply calls him “Philemon.” It was “Philemon” who wrote the Septum Sermon — The Seven Sermons to the Dead, and Jung traveled with the dead and had to minister to the dead. And it was in fact “Philemon” who gave Carl Jung his basic philosophy; that is, he turned Freud’s unconscious into the collective unconscious. He got the archetypal images and I think you were involved in that….
Brooke: What Jung did is he presented a positive thing inside you. Now here’s what’s happening. We have the door­­­­way…perfect doorway for the human poten­tial movement. Here’s what Jung said, and here’s the connection. Inside this incred­ible, mysterious unconscious is a pandora’s box of universal conscious­ness. It’s the doorway to becoming God. He called it the “collec­tive unconscious” in which there are “archetypes” inside. Here’s another thing that hap­pens. As you visualize these different archetypes, who do you think you’re pulling in? Spirit guides. And so one idea today is that people say, “Well, you had problems as a child? You’re a Christian? Why don’t you visualize” — and this is in today’s new therapy — “your little archetype inside of Christ who’s going to heal you.” Dave, what happens when that happens?
Hunt: Well, if I’m a Jungian analyst and you’re my patient — now we’re not Chris­tians now, okay? This is just Jungian death analy­sis — I will get a vision. I mean, Carl Jung years after he hadn’t even seen a patient for years, he was still getting visions of their problems because of this “collective unconscious.” We’re all one. So all you have to do is tune in to this. I get a vision of you and I say, “You know, Tal, you had a particular problem when you were two years and three months and four days old, and back there a certain thing happened and….” “Well, I don’t exactly remember that.” “Well, what you’ve got to do is visualize your child archetype — that’s you as a child — and you should visualize your hero arche­type coming along.” And then I look on the application and, “Hey, you’re a Christian, Tal. Well, you’re hero archetype would be Christ.”
Brooke: Exactly.
Hunt: “So why don’t you visualize Christ coming alongside.” This is totally non-Christian. This is “inner healing” but it’s in the church today….
Brooke: Could be Buddha…
Hunt: …they’ve just picked it up.
Brooke: …if I’m a Buddhist on the application.
Hunt: Now, the Protestants who are getting terrific results from visualizing Jesus, they’re going to have to ask themselves, “How is it that the Catholics are getting just as good results visualizing Mary? And how is it that the American Indian shamans get fantastic results visualizing coyotes?” Because there is a technique. It is a divination technique and it works. There is power in this very technique. Now, this has been — maybe we’re getting ahead of ourselves — but this has been brought into the church of Jesus Christ.
Ankerberg: All right, and right here I’d like you to see an ad for the 24th annual meeting of the Association for Humanistic Psycholo­gy. Now, you’ve heard a little bit about Freud and Jung. Why is it that people are constantly having courses on Jungian philosophy and Jungian counseling? And we’re going to talk about that, and I will read you what the Humanistic Psycholo­gy, their 24th annual meeting, what they were promoting. But before I tell you what they were promoting, I want you to see where this ad was at. It was placed in the “Shaman’s Drum,” a witchcraft magazine. That’s where they were offering it. And I’ll tell you more when you come right back. Stick with us.

Ankerberg: All right, we’re back, and we’re talking about, what about New Age thinking. How does it affect psychology today? And we’ve talked a little bit about Carl Gustav Jung and the influence he’s had on psychology. And here at the 24th annual meeting of the Association for Humanistic Psychology they were advocating that you would come to hear, “An unforgettable opportunity to learn from some of the most important healers and spiritual leaders in West Africa and Brazil. Journey with us into altered states of con­sciousness where one can meet one’s higher spirit teachers and the gods themselves.” Here are the topics that are listed at the 24th annual meeting: “Vision and Transformation,” “Mediumistic Painting,” “Ritual,” “Medita­tion,” “Shamanism,” “The Chakra System;” Here’s the post-conference meetings: “Altered states of consciousness;” “Shamanism and Spirit Healing;” “Mediumship;” “Healing hearts and minds.” Now, gentlemen, are you saying that our psychologists across the country are imbibing from this kind of information off Carl Gustav Jung and they’re using this?
Hunt: Absolutely. Well, not just Jung, but the whole thing comes out of the occult. Freud’s going back into the unconscious mind and psychic determinism was just a Westernized version of karma and reincarnation. He just didn’t go that far. Instead of going into prior lives, he only went back into prior years of your life. But now we have the psychologists and the psychiatrists going the whole way. In fact, Freud’s theories came out of hypno­sis, when he hypnotized his patients. That’s where they came out with this thing. Now, you can take a person and hypnotize them back into the womb, through the womb into prior lives. They come out with factual data of lives they’ve lived all over this world. They could de­scribe places where they’ve never been. It “proves” reincarnation. So there’s the connection. And then it moved on into Jung. It got into heavier duty. And they are talking about spirits. They are in the spirit realm. Now, as Brooks said it so beautifully back there a few minutes ago, what Carl Jung has done and what psychology has done is give us an alleged scientific framework for spiritism. So now we have…you can get into the occult. I mean, you can pick up your spirit guides. You don’t have to worry about demons, folks, you’re not…you read “The gods,” “The higher spirit teach­ers,” but they don’t really mean God in the sense that we mean it, but you’re getting in touch with deeper levels of your psyche. The archetypal images. So, you can pick up spirit guides, but don’t worry about them being evil or being demons or anything like that. You’re simply tapping into deeper levels of your own consciousness. So we’ve got a scientific explanation for getting involved in spirit­ism.
Ankerberg: Okay. We’ve got 250 different therapeutic approaches that are used in psychotherapy, and of those 250 different therapeu­tic approaches we now have 10,000 individual techniques of applying it. So if you go to 20 different counselors, you can get 20 differ­ent answers. But the fact is, let’s get a definition of “Psychology.” Psychology is the study of the human psyche or soul. It’s not medicine. It’s not chemistry or physics. But it claims to deal with the spiritual side of man, not his body but his soul, his mind. Not to be confused with the brain. Now, the Bible makes some claims in this area and says that that area is its sole province. Is that correct, Dave?
Hunt: Amen. Right.
Ankerberg: And that we don’t have a “Christian chemistry” or a “Christian physics,” and so you’re wondering why it is that we have a “Christian psychology.” Can you explain that?
Hunt: As a matter of fact, we don’t. There’s no such thing. And when I tell people that, I sound like somebody who stepped off of another planet and doesn’t know what’s going on on planet earth. So in Beyond Seduction I quote a couple of leading Christian psycholo­gists and they are speaking at a seminar of Christian psychologists and they say this: “We are often asked if we are Christian psycholo­gists and find it difficult to answer since we don’t know what the question implies. We are Christians who are psychologists, but at the present time there is no accept­able Christian psychology that is markedly different from non-Christian psychology. There is not an acceptable theory, mode of research or treatment methodology in psychology that is distinctly Christian.” They’re telling you, “There ain’t no such thing as Christian psychology!” Well, then what is Christian psychology? It’s the attempt to reach out from this godless atheist and that humanist and try to pick out something that, you know…well, let me give you another quotation here. I’m quoting Bruce Narramore, the head of the Rosemeade Graduate School of Psychology — which has been integrated now with Biola Universi­ty and with Talbot Theological Seminary — he says, “Under the influ­ence of humanistic psychologists like Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow” — two of the guys who founded the Association for Humanistic Psychology that advertises in “Shaman’s Drum” — he says, “Under the influence of humanistic psychologists like Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow, many of us Christians have begun to see our need for self love and self esteem.” Did you hear what the man said? He said in 1,900 years there wasn’t anybody got that out of this book [the Bible]! You won’t find it in the writings of, well, Wesley, or Calvin, or Luther. You won’t find it in the writings of Andrew Murray, or Spurgeon, or Luther! Where did we get it? You never got it out of here. We got it from the godless humanists! And then we said, “Hey, sounds like a great idea. Let’s go back and see if we can’t massage some verses around here and show that, `Why, that’s what Holy Writ was always talking about! But nobody understood it.'” It was the apostles of psychology that came up with this idea. Well, then they say, “But all truth is God’s truth, brother.” Well, what do you mean by “Truth”? You mean the truth that would allow an Einstein to come up with E = MC2, or do you mean the truth that Jesus was talking about when He said, “I am the Truth. Thy Word is Truth.” When He said, “Because I tell you the truth, you believe me not” in John 8. The carnal mind doesn’t understand the things of the Spirit of God. But you’re going to say that the Holy Spirit through ignorance or oversight neglected to put it in here but somehow the great apostles of psychology, the Freuds and Jungs and Rogers and Maslows, they’ve come up with it. I won’t buy that for one minute. This Book [the Bible] claims to have given us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.
Ankerberg: You know, if you think about it for a moment. If we’ve got 250 therapies and 10,000 techniques, they all can’t be right at the same time if they’re talking about the same thing and conflict­ing. What’s the answer to this?
Alexander: John, the irony of it is that they all work, up to a certain percentage of people who go through the mill. Any psycho­therapy will produce a certain cure rate, and beyond that, none of them work. The reason is that people are helped by being paid attention to. It’s that simple.
Hunt: Right. What they’re doing, though, is they’re giving us a substitute. And let’s take it from Thomas Szasz, a non-practicing Jew; one of the world’s leading psychiatrists. And he says, “We have taken the salvation of sinful souls and we have turned it into the cure of sick minds.” So, it’s no longer sin, it’s a neurosis. It’s not guilt, it’s some kind of a something from my unconscious mind. And they’re producing a false Gospel with a false salvation, a wrong diagnosis. And I’m just astonished that Christians will buy into this sort of thing. We need to get back to the Word of God.
Ankerberg: Yeah. Is this something that the Christian church needs to speak out on? Or is there apostasy coming into the church?
Hunt: There is definitely apostasy. I think we need to speak out on it instead of accepting it.
Ankerberg: Gentlemen, we want to say thank you for being with us and for sharing from you heart and we really appreciate the stand that each of you have taken in print, the books that you have written, the work that you have done. And we pray that God’s blessing will rest upon you and His protec­tion as well. Thank you for being with us.

Leave a Comment