The Power Behind the Force
|By: Dave Hunt; ©2000|
|What are the dangers of ignoring the power behind many of the false teaching we hear today? What does “the force” have to do with evolution? No intelligent person really believes in talking snakes, do they? Dave Hunt has some interesting insights into these questions.|
The Power Behind the Force
(from Occult Invasion, Harvest House, 1998)
A Call for Intellectual Honesty
To reject Christ is every person’s right, but it is intellectual dishonesty of the worst sort to insist that His teachings are perfectly compatible with Hindu-Buddhist pantheistic philosophies. This must be so, concludes one writer, because “all the New Agers I’ve met love Jesus and Buddha and Krishna and anyone, regardless of race or language or religious preference….”
That an unprincipled “love” (which is too weak to bring correction to those whom it loves) somehow renders the question of truth and right and wrong and sound theology irrelevant is a basic fallacy. In fact, genuine love corrects those perceived to be in serious and life-threatening error.
The occult invasion of Western society is a direct consequence of the “scientific” erosion of belief in the transcendent nature of God. Millions in the Western world now practice Transcendental Meditation. The very title Transcendental is a fraud. TM is pantheistic and thus denies a transcendent God. It leads one deep within to find the “true self.” Our society has become obsessed with self, a self which it is determined to elevate to godhood.
An Important Distinction
The Force is believed to be the guiding power behind evolution. We have seen that evolution is mathematically impossible. Furthermore, it could never account for man’s conscience. A sense of moral obligation cannot be explained in physiological terms. As Sir Arthur Eddington wrote, “Ought takes us outside chemistry and physics.” Man simply cannot be the product of evolutionary forces working on matter. There are no ethics or morals in nature. “Good” and “evil” do not apply to atoms or galaxies or natural forces such as gravity or electricity or psychic power (if there is such a thing).
A Force with dark and light sides allows no difference between a physical law and a moral law. But that distinction is extremely important. A moral law cannot be used for one’s own ends, though a physical law could be. Moral laws cannot become the source of personal empowerment, which is the major goal in the New Age movement. Universal moral laws which are binding upon all can only be prescribed by the Supreme God of supernatural monotheism, who Himself in his own character sets the standard of righteousness, love, purity, and goodness.
In contrast to Eastern mysticism, Christianity teaches that the moral laws of God’s infinite justice have been violated and that finite man cannot pay the infinite penalty. By his rebellion, man deserves eternal separation from the God who created him. God could pay the infinite penalty demanded by His justice, but it wouldn’t be just because He is not one of us. Therefore, in infinite love, God became a man through the virgin birth so that, as God and man in one Person, He could pay the full penalty demanded by His law. This He did upon the cross.
The triumphant cry of Jesus just before He laid down His life—”It is finished”—is an accounting term in the original New Testament Greek (teleo, to discharge a debt). The infinite penalty for sin had been paid. According to the Bible, all man needs to do is to admit that as a sinner he deserves what Christ suffered in his place, and to receive the pardon that is offered as a free gift of God’s grace and love.
In contrast, there is a palpable emptiness to the occultist’s gospel. The only salvation it offers is power to take control of one’s life and to fulfill one’s desires. Righteousness and truth are missing altogether. The practice of yoga or the attainment of an altered state of consciousness in any other way in order to tap into the Force won’t even pay a traffic ticket, much less the eternal penalty for sin. The Force behind Hindu/Buddhist/New Age philosophy lacks the righteous basis for the forgiveness for which every sincere heart yearns. No sin is acknowledged, and even if it were, there is no God who has been sinned against, nor is there a just way for the sinner to be forgiven.
As its answer to man’s deepest longings and need, occult philosophy offers a lie. Instead of love, the greatest virtue and highest experience, we are left with a void. The Star Wars Force of the occult magician is no better “God” than the impersonal forces at work in the atheist’s materialist universe. Sir Arthur Eddington argues:
- When from the human heart, perplexed with the mystery of existence, the cry goes up, “What is it all about?” it is no true answer to… reply: “It is about atoms and chaos; it is about a universe of fiery globes rolling on to impending doom….”
A Conflict Between God and Satan
The Bible presents in great detail the One whom it claims is the true God, the Creator of the universe. It presents Satan as well, the adversary of both God and man. Satan appears as a serpent who entices Eve with the promise that if she will disobey God and follow him she will attain immortality and godhood. This enticer to evil, called “the god of this world” (2 Corinthians 4:4) because he is the inspiration behind the world’s false religions, is known throughout the Bible as “the great dragon… that old serpent, called the Devil and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world” (Revelation 12:9).
Many people today consider themselves too sophisticated to take the story of the Garden of Eden literally. Surely that part about Eve’s conversation with a talking snake marks the story as mythology. Such superstition is acceptable only to primitive peoples. Any attempt to teach it today would be an insult to modern man. So the argument goes.
Yet the very skeptics who are too intelligent to believe that Satan used a serpent to speak to Eve embrace native American Indian spirituality. There seems to be no problem in believing that Indian medicine men speak to all manner of animals and birds and even become these creatures at times. And are not some of our leading scientists attempting to converse with chimpanzees and even dolphins? Listen to Dr. John Lilly again:
- Dolphins are an example of a high alien intelligence, and I’ve fought that one out with various people since I published my first book on the subject in 1961, Man and Dolphin. But I’m not fighting with them anymore. They’re coming around; they’re beginning to apply cognitive psychology to dolphins.
The Sioux Indians, whom Phil Jackson looks up to as his mentors and whose spirituality he has adopted, teach that the “sacred pipe” was given to them ages ago by a beautiful woman who used serpents in her magic and who, as they watched, turned into a “young red and brown buffalo calf,” then into a “white buffalo,” then into a “black buffalo,” then disappeared. Black Elk declares that this story “should not only be taken as an event in time, but also as an eternal truth.” Jackson, who rejected Christianity and adopted native American spirituality, seems to have no trouble accepting this story as literally true.
The Serpent and the Dragon
The serpent and dragon (identified in the Bible as Satan) are the major benevolent figures both in mythology and in almost all religions. In Haitian voodoo tradition, for example, the Great Serpent is the fountain of all true wisdom and the creator of the universe, who took the Rainbow as his wife and from that union came blood and all creatures. “And then, as a final gift, they taught the people to partake of the blood as a sacrament, that they might become the spirit and embrace the wisdom of the Serpent.”
The dragon is found on thousands of temples throughout Asia, while the serpent dominates the religion of India. In Hinduism, Shiva, one of the three chief gods, has serpents entwined in his hair. Yoga is symbolized as a raft made of cobras, and its goal is to awaken the kundalini power coiled at the base of the human spine in the form of a serpent. In the temples of ancient Egypt and Rome the body of the god Serapis was encircled by the coils of a great serpent. Numerous other examples could be given, from the plumed serpent Quetzalcoatl, the Savior-god of the Mayas, to the annual snake dance of the Hopi Indians. Manly P. Hall, one of the greatest authorities on the occult (and himself a practitioner of occultism), has written:
- Serpent worship in some form permeated nearly all parts of the earth. The serpent mounds of the American Indian; the carved-stone snakes of Central and South America; the hooded cobras of India; Python, the great snake of the Greeks; the sacred serpents of the Druids; the Midgard snake of Scandinavia; the Nagas of Burma, Siam and Cambodia… the mystic serpent of Orpheus; the snakes at the oracle of Delphi… the sacred serpents preserved in the Egyptian temples; the Uraeus coiled upon the foreheads of the Pharaohs and priests—all these bear witness to the universal veneration in which the snake was held….
- The serpent is… the symbol and prototype of the Universal Savior, who redeems the world by giving creation the knowledge of itself…. It has long been viewed as the emblem of immortality. It is the symbol of reincarnation…. 
In Greek mythology a serpent was wrapped around the Orphic egg, the symbol of the cosmos. Likewise at Delphi, Greece (for centuries the location of the most sought-after and influential oracle of the ancient world, consulted by potentates from as far away as North Africa and Asia Minor), the three legs of the oracular tripod in the inner shrine of the temple were intertwined with serpents. Or, as one further example, consider the Greek and Roman god of medicine, Aesculapius, whose symbol was a serpent-entwined staff from which the symbol of modern medicine, the caduceus, was derived.
In the temples erected in his honor, Aesculapius was worshiped with snakes because of an ancient myth which said that he had received a healing herb at the mouth of a serpent. Here, quite clearly, we have the Genesis story perverted: The serpent is not the deceiver and destroyer but the Savior of mankind, replacing Jesus Christ. At graduation ceremonies at medical schools around the world, where prayers to the God of the Bible or to Jesus Christ would not be allowed, graduates, upon receiving their M.D. degrees, still repeat aloud together the Hippocratic oath. It begins, “I swear by Apollo, by Aesculapius, by Hygeia and Panacea, and by all the gods and goddesses….”
In Up With Eden, Ken Wilbur points out that in religions around the world the serpent has consistently been portrayed as the symbol of perennial wisdom and eternal life. There can be no doubt that the serpent, who came to Eve, is identified everywhere (except in the Bible) with the occult and is honored as embodying that mysterious force which occultists of all kinds seek to enlist in the accomplishment of their desires. The Bible, on the other hand, identifies the serpent with Satan and declares that those who seek his occult powers eventually find themselves entrapped as his slaves and lose their souls.
It would seem that in the honor given to the serpent in all cultures and religions we have an admission that the “Force” behind the universe is very personal indeed. Both the Bible and the occult world agree that the serpent is real; they only disagree on whether he is man’s friend or foe.
- Jack Underhill, “Some New Age Myths and Truths,” in The Source (Koloa, HI 96756), January/February 1988, p. 19.
- Sir Arthur Eddington, The Nature of the Physical Ward (MacMillan, 1953), p. 317.
- MAGICAL BLEND: A Transformative Journey, Issue 17,1987, p.13.
- Black Elk, The Sacred Pipe (University of Oklahoma Press, 1989), pp. 3-9.
- Davis, Serpent and Rainbow, pp. 213-14.
- Manly P. Hall, The Secret Teachings of all Ages: An Encyclopedic Outline of Masonic, Hermetic, Qabbalistic and Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy (Los Angeles: The Philosophical Research Society, Inc., 1969), sixteenth ed., pp. LXXXVII-LXXXVIII.