“Narrative Therapy” The Beautiful Deception of Storytelling

Introduction: Tell Me Your Story.

Whats your Story – Narrative Therapy

“Narrative Therapy” – Besides the various mystical practices churches, in general, have latched onto in the past few decades, several psychological techniques and procedures have taken the church by storm, claiming that it can help us find meaning and purpose in our lives, and make the world a better place.

An increasing number of pastors, or should we rather say false teachers and preachers, have made it a habit to quote Carl Jung, Sigmund Freud, M. Scott Peck, Thomas Szasz, and other psychotherapists and analysts rather than the Word of God. And, whenever they do quote from God’s Word, they prefer to use the New Age perversion of the Bible by Eugene H. Peterson.

A therapeutic technique that has grown in popularity in church circles is “Narrative Therapy” or “Narrative Medicine,” as it is also often called. Storytelling is a natural phenomenon. As children, we all made up our own little stories to escape into a fantasy world of heroes, villains, victories, failures, peace, wholeness, and tranquility (1 Corinthians 13:11). Carl Jung called it “active imagination,” a term which we shall investigate and evaluate more closely later in this dissertation.

Why “Narrative Therapy”?

The best way to answer this question is to first consult with the Word of God because that should be the very first thing every truly born-again Christian ought to do when seeking answers to pertinent questions. God’s word and His alone tells you exactly how to change your own life’s story to that of God’s – how to begin it, how to journey it, and how to reach God’s destination for your life.

How can a young man keep his way [life’s story] pure? By keeping watch [on himself] according to Your word (Psalm 119:9: Amplified). (Emphasis added)

For His divine power has bestowed on us [absolutely] everything necessary for [a dynamic spiritual] life and godliness, through true and personal knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. (2 Peter 1:3). (Emphasis added).

What is more plainly and simpler than this? By keeping watch unto yourself and your life’s story (daily walk) according to the Word of God, you gain true and personal knowledge of Him, the Word of God who became flesh.

For the word of God is living and active and full of power [making it operative, energizing, and effective]. It is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating as far as the division of the soul and spirit [the completeness of a person], and of both joints and marrow [the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and judging the very thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12).

What more do we need when this is what God has bestowed on us by his divine power? If the above passages from God’s Word are true, why do so many people who claim to be Christians resort to manmade therapeutic methods that cannot penetrate man’s soul and spirit in its efforts to gain wholeness, peace, and tranquility? Assuredly, there is nothing wrong in wanting to experience peace, happiness, tranquility, and fullness of life in one’s inner parts.

Nonetheless, all man’s efforts are futile because, God has said so many centuries ago, “There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked.” (Isaiah 57:21). The word “râshâ‛” (wicked) means to be morally at variance with God’s commands and doctrines, to concretely and actively be a bad person, and therefore to be guilty and to stand condemned before the righteous Judge of all humanity. He also says,

What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: (Romans 3:9-10).

The core problem of all humanity is that the heart of every single, breathing human being is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked: who can know it? (Jeremiah 17:9). And yet, there are those whose hearts are equally deceitful and desperately wicked who have the audacity to claim that they hold the key to all man’s problems—STORYTELLING! This is how one of South Africa’s best and rapidly apostatizing spiritual mentors, Trevor Hudson, had to say about the two-year Narrative Pastoral Counselling Course, now also launching in George. Watch the Facebook video here.

The Coram Deo Church (Community), to which Trevor Hudson refers in the above video, launched their Pastoral Narrative Training Course in April 2019. “Coram Deo” is the Latin for “in the presence of God.” In the introductory paragraph to their website they formulate the reasons for their two-year course as follows:

South Africa has a unique history with this kind of therapy where the development of “Narrative Therapy” in the South African context was and is significantly advanced by pastoral communities.

People interested in pastoral narrative therapy are typically intrigued by both the pastoral aspect of the work as well as working with stories. ‘Pastoral narrative’ is, therefore, a unique offering that deals both with pastoral concerns and approaches but is also fully training in ‘Narrative Therapy’ as one would encounter it all over the world.

Besides the fact that participants must cough-up R16 900 for the two-year tuition,[1] several red lights begin to flicker in their short introduction. They are:

  • South Africa has a unique history with this kind of therapy (“Narrative Therapy”).
  • Pastoral communities in South Africa have significantly developed and advanced “Narrative Therapy.”
  • “Pastoral Narrative” is a unique way of cementing pastoral concerns and approaches with the global usage of “Narrative Therapy.”

The 21st Century ecclesiastic thrust to re-interpret the Bible, and the related pinning of a largely Christian label (“pastoral”) on a secular therapeutic practice in order to give it more credence, is not only dishonest but completely inept to enhance the methodology of the original practice and lift it to a level of something more unique and hallowed. In fact, the original “Narrative Therapy” as one would encounter it all over the world, is shamanic in nature and influences biblical pastoral work, in the very least, negatively, and at most, demonically, as we shall see later.

From Whence, “Narrative Therapy”?

Michael White - Narrative Therapy

There is a consensus among pastoral therapists, psychologists, psychoanalysts and researches that an Australian social worker, Michael White (1948-2008), was the first to develop a technique using storytelling to assist patients of all ages in dealing with trauma, suffering, and bad experiences in their lives. He, together with a colleague, David Epston, elucidate their technique in a popular 1990 book called “Narrative Means to Therapeutic Ends,” which has since become known as “Narrative Therapy.”

The Pyote Hunt Barbara G Meyerhoff - Narrative Therapy

The Peyote Hunt

Barbara Meyerhoff, an anthropologist, and author of the book “The Peyote Hunt,” who became the first Western Huichol Shaman, had a significant influence on Michael White. He admitted that his own Narrative Therapeutic practice was firmly grounded in her concept of “Audience,” a psychologically-based construct that promotes reciprocity.

As a representative of the “collective unconscious” which needs to be interpreted tangibly through dreams, and images (archetypes), the shaman addresses many diverse audiences: individuals seeking healing, wholeness or knowledge, the community at large, the ancestors, the spirits, and the Creator.

It was during her work with the Holocaust survivors that the idea of Audience became central to her work and thought. The concept of reciprocity is also well-established in “Ayni” (“right relationships”), a South American shamanic movement aiming to build right relationships of reciprocity toward a Global Village (One World Order) through International Service-Learning. (The idea of “Ayni” [right relationships] will be explored in more detail later in this article).

Should we be surprised that Jung’s “Collective Unconscious” (Satan’s sphere of evil spirits or demons of whom one was Jung’s own personal spirit guide called Philemon) and Alice Bailey’s great “Community Consciousness” are gradually developing into a reciprocal oneness through “storytelling,” “dreams,” “visions,” “relationships,” and other mystical practices like “Positive Confession,” “Positive Thinking,” “Possibility Thinking,” the “Law of Attraction” and the assertion that “what you say is what you get?” The Lucis Trust site “World Goodwill” writes:

In Alice Bailey’s writings the Hierarchy, is presented as one great community of consciousness. It is said to be immersed in a quest to understand the mysteries of Divine Purpose, and to hold that evolving understanding before humanity as a living reservoir of intelligent love – the Divine Plan. The working out of the universal ideas of the Plan takes place as humanity responds to higher impressions of the wholeness and sacredness of life and strives to intelligently embody these insights in all areas of thought, activity and relationship (economic, political, educational, legal, psychological, religious and so on).

There is today a growing intuitive response to the ideas and principles of the Plan as this living, universal field of ideas and principles. At the same time there is a natural awakening of the will to serve this vision and to take part in the Great Work of building, through time, a civilization of wholeness and right relations. The articles below explore a number of insights about the Plan – directly quoted from Alice Bailey or adapted.[2]

A multitude of church-going “Christians” have fallen prey to the New Age lie that your thoughts and words have immense creative powers and that internal and external storytelling (narrativity) is, with the focus on obdurate positivity, the magical way to realize those thoughts. Carolyn Baker writes:

In the United States the New Age movement began its rise in popularity some three decades ago. Drawing from the teachings of nontraditional, metaphysical movements in the Middle Ages as well as the Transcendental movement of the nineteenth century, the New Age movement oftered an alternative to the rigid theology of orthodox religions by emphasizing positive thinking and personal growth. Although incorporating a plethora of teachings from ancient
traditions that address both the light and dark sides of the human condition, the focus of New Age thinking has been on “living in the light.”

Not unlike its predecessor, the Christian Science religion in the United States based on the teachings of Mary Baker Eddy, the New Age concurs with William Shakespeare when he stated, “There is nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so.” New Age teachers emphasize the power of one’s mental attitude to draw to oneself either adversity or advantage. Several New Age teachers such as Ernest Holmes, Eric Butterworth, Alice Bailey, and Louise Hay have written extensively on the power of positive thinking to manifest personal and financial abundance in one’s life. Drawing from the principles of quantum physics, many New Age teachers speak of the “law of attraction,” or the notion that like attracts like. That is, if one is thinking positively about one’s financial situation, one may draw abundance to oneself; whereas it one is feeling deprived or is focusing on a lack of monetary resources, such negative thinking is likely to perpetuate or even worsen one’s financial situation.

Carolyn Baker, “Love in The Age of Ecological Apocalypse”

Believe it or not, the New Age positive thinking started with a clandestine Satanist, Alice Bailey, the founder of Lucifer trust, which, for obvious reasons, was later changed to Lucis trust, and who now is advising the UN on spiritual matters.

Carl Jung and “Narrative Therapy”

Swiss psychiatrist Dr. Carl Jung holding pipe as he sits on chair in his library at home in Knusnacht, Switzerland, 1949  - Narrative Therapy
Carl Jung

Some researchers, consider the Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Carl Jung, to have sown the first seeds of narrative therapy. According to Dr. Rita Charon, a general internist and inventor of the term “Narrative Medicine,” Jungian analytical psychology (aka “archetypes” and “the collective unconscious”) bear striking similarities to her own narrative medicine techniques.

There are allegedly many parallels with Jung’s early 20th Century theories of storytelling, commonly known as “active imagination,” and psychic healing. [bear in mind that they are indeed only theories minus any given scientifically proven facts). Both Jung and Charon agree that reciprocal or shared storytelling helps the patient to re-internalize the domination their maladies may have on their lives, Facing an illness, the patient’s desired “life narrative” often veers off into an undesired path, forcing him or her to drastically alter their roles in their families, communities, and society. This is the instant when reconstructive therapy (positive and/or imaginative storytelling) becomes the new Messiah.

Dr. Charon writes, “That illness and suffering must be told is becoming clear, not only in treating trauma survivors but in ordinary general medicine practice […] These narratives demonstrate how critical is the telling of pain and suffering, enabling patients to give voice to what they endure and to frame the illness so as to escape dominion by it” [3]

To Whence, “Narrative Therapy?”

Life’s journeys have their own “to whence” purposes or goals. Everything in life, whether religion, sport, business, daily chores, or just relaxing on a holiday, have their own goals or purposes. In our post-modern age, the word “wholeness” has become an oft-repeated buzz word in all walks of life. The New Age and its concurrent occult netherworld of spirit beings in shamanism, mysticism, parapsychology, psychology, and psychiatry have gained a strong foothold in post-modern Christianity.

It is said that skilled Shamans are able to analyze and identify the veils unique to the individual, to receive information, and to restore vitality, balance and wholeness to the individual, the community or cause. Shamanic rituals are created and performed to connect individuals with plant, animal and spirit guide allies. They carry the potential to reweave and bring home parts of us that are disconnected or lost, remembering a calling of our destiny. Shamanic practices such as calling in the directions, smudging, going on a journey to retrieve a power animal or a soul part, and a fire ceremony to name a few, are examples of how the shaman can encourage the individual or the cause back to its natural state of wholeness.[4]

The superimposition of ostensibly hundreds to thousands of year-old shamanic practices onto Christianity, mainly through the Jungian model of psychology and psychoanalysis, has drawn away multitudes of “Christians” from God’s Word to a belief system of fables and manmade stories. (2 Timothy 4:4). No wonder Paul warns that in the last days “Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” (Acts 20:30) and “if any man draws back [shun and withdraw from a biblically-based faith], my soul shall have no pleasure in him.” (Hebrews 10:38).

Sadly, the number of people who claim to be or have maintained to be Christians in the past and since have changed or abandoned the faith they once professed, is growing at an exponentially alarming pace. Alice Bailey, for instance,” joined a missionary movement to the British soldiers in India when she was in her early twenties. It is said that at that stage in her life she was a very stern and fundamentalist Christian whose main mission in life it was to save souls and to bring true religion to the boys. She wrote:

A friend of mine felt that I would really render a service if I could show people how I became what I am from what I was. It might be useful to know how a rabid, orthodox Christian worker could become a well-known esoteric teacher. People might learn much by discovering how a theologically minded Bible student could come to the firm conviction that the teachings of the East and of the West must be fused and blended before the true and universal religion—for which the world waits—could appear on earth. [5]

Evard Huisamen  - Narrative Therapy
Dr. Evard Huisamen and wife

South Africa is none the better. Dr. Evard Huisamen of the Coram Deo Community Church and some of his colleagues who at first believed in the existence of a personal devil and fallen angels or demons are prime examples of the end-time apostasy. In an RSG (Radio Sonder Grense) interview with Jean Oosthuizen and Professor Julian Muller, a member of the faculty of theology at the University of Pretoria, Huisamen admitted that he no longer believes in the existence of a personal devil and demons. (“Uit ’n Ander Hoek,” 23 June 2019). Both Huisamen and Muller are avid promoters of “Pastoral Narrative Therapy.” May I remind you what Coram Deo says on its site about “Narrative Therapy’s” influence on “Pastoral Narrative Therapy”?

People interested in pastoral narrative therapy are typically intrigued by both the pastoral aspect of the work as well as working with stories. ‘Pastoral narrative’ is therefore a unique offering that deals both with pastoral concerns and approaches but is also fully training in ‘Narrative Therapy’ as one would encounter it all over the world. (Emphasis added).

Pouring Christian jargon into a secular jar of occult origin does not sanctify the latter’s source of origin and neither does it sanctify the new name tag “Pastoral Narrative Therapy.” There is no difference in the potency of their poisons. Henceforth, the key concepts of the shamanic “Narrative Therapy” of Michael White and those of “Pastoral Narrative Therapists” are birds of a feather flocking affectionately together.

What are these mutually agreeable key concepts in both these therapies?

“Narrative therapy is a form of therapy that aims to separate the individual from the problem, allowing the individual to externalize their issues rather than internalize them. It relies on the individual’s own skills and sense of purpose to guide them through difficult times.”

“The problem is the problem; the person is not the problem.” – Michael White and David Epston.

To this end, there are a few main themes or principles of narrative therapy:

1. Reality is socially constructed, which means that our interactions and dialogue with others impacts the way we experience reality.

2. Reality is influenced by and communicated through language, which suggests that people who speak different languages may have radically different interpretations of the same experiences.

3. Having a narrative that can be understood helps us organize and maintain our reality. In other words, stories and narratives help us to make sense of our experiences.

4. There is no “objective reality” or absolute truth; what is true for us may not be the same for another person, or even for ourselves at another point in time.

These principles tie into the postmodernist school of thought, which views reality as a shifting, changing, and deeply personal concept. In postmodernism, there is no objective truth—the truth is what each one of us makes it, influenced by social norms and ideas.

Unlike modern thought that held the following tenets as sacred, postmodern thought holds skepticism over grand narratives, the individual, the idea of neutral language, and universal truth.

Thus, the main premise behind narrative therapy is understanding individuals within this postmodern context. If there is no universal truth, then people need to create truths that help them construct a reality that serves themselves and others. Narrative therapy offers those story-shaping skills.

It’s amazing how much easier solving or negating a problem can be, when you stop seeing the problem as an integral part of who you are, and instead, as simply a problem. [6] (Emphasis added).

Man’s ongoing quest to regain “Paradise Lost,” (with due respect to and acknowledgment of John Milton’s epic poem with the same name), the pursuit of an Edenic kind of otherworldly tranquility, harmony, peace, unity, oneness and wholeness, not only inwardly (body, soul and spirit) but also outwardly (socially; communally), has led man to seek and find ways that are completely at variance with the Word of God. (Proverbs 14:12).

The word “wholeness” is wholly absent from the Word of God. It connotes the mending, healing or unifying of something that is broken, fragmentary or disconnected, either within the human “self” (body, soul and spirit) or within the community at large. Moreover, it advocates a process of change of something already existent from a state of brokenness to a state of wholeness. The God of the Bible never takes an old already existent broken vessel and molds it into something completely whole. He discards the old and creates anew.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17).

The Classic Edition of the Amplified Bible renders the verse,

Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!

It follows that anyone who participates in therapies, methods, ideas, or ways and means to enhance the self-image into a state of euphoric wholeness is either not saved or “saved” but heavily deceived. In fact, their involvement in these practices is a denial of God’s awesome omnipotence to save man to the uttermost and must, therefore, seek and find new ways to interpret the devil, sin, guilt, heaven, hell, salvation, resurrection, and the Kingdom of God.

Fools make a mock of sin and sin mocks the fools [who are its victims; a sin offering made by them only mocks them, bringing them disappointment and disfavor], but among the upright there is the favor of God. (Proverbs 14:9; Amplified Bible).

Storytelling, a New Path to Communal Salvation

Jean Paul Gustave Ricœur, hailed as one of the most prolific philosophers of all time, was best known for combining phenomenological description with hermeneutics [knowledge that deals with interpretation, especially of the Bible or literary texts]. As such, his thought is within the same tradition as other major hermeneutic phenomenologists, Edmund Husserl, and Hans-Georg Gadamer. In 2000, he was awarded the Kyoto Prize in Arts and Philosophy for having “revolutionized the methods of hermeneutic phenomenology, expanding the study of textual interpretation to include the broad yet concrete domains of mythology, biblical exegesis, psychoanalysis, theory of metaphor, and narrative theory.“[7]

Consensus narrativity [linguistic skills in dealing with the extent to which a text tells a story] has permeated every sphere of man’s subsistence. It was the death knell of absolutes in the realm of ethics, and especially religion. Ricœur postulates,

“I believe that we are henceforth incapable of returning to an order of moral life which would take the form of a simple submission to commandments or to an alien or supreme will, even if this will were represented as divine. We must accept as a positive good the critique of ethics and religion that has been undertaken by the school of suspicion. From it we have learned to understand that the commandment that gives death, not life, is a product and projection of our own weakness.”[8]

Ricœur’s paternalistic reference to “commandments,” “supreme will,” and “divine” is patently a jab at the God of the Bible, despite the overall conviction that he was a Christian who later became a Christian pacifist, either before or after World War II. Paul of Tarsus warns his brethren to beware of philosophers who aim to spoil and lead them away as booty through their seductions and vain deceits after the rudiments of the world and not after Christ. (Colossians 2:8).

The rudiments of the world are clearly mirrored in Ricœur’s disparaging remarks on one of God’s most wondrous gifts to mankind, the capacity to feel guilt, compunction and scruple. He wrote:

“With guilt there arises indeed a sort of demand which can be called scrupulosity and whose ambiguous character is extremely interesting. A scrupulous consciousness is a delicate consciousness, a precise consciousness, enamored of increasing perfection… This atomization of the law into a multitude of commandments entails an endless ‘juridization’ of action and a quasi-obsessional ritualization of daily life… With it we enter into the hell of guilt, such as St. Paul described it: the law itself becomes a source of sin.”[9] (Emphasis added)

Paul of Tarsus never described the law as a source of sin. Ricœur’s evaluation of Paul’s description of the law reminds one of Michael White’s and David Epston’s ungodly maxim, “The problem is the problem; the person is not the problem.” In short: “sin is not in the inside of you or a part of your psyche; it is outside of you and wants you to feel guilty.” The Word of God (doctrines, commands, jurisdictions) is often likened to food nourishment (Matthew 4:4). As such, it is an elementary life-giving substance that needs to be absorbed from the outside into the inside.

Therefore, his commands or Law cannot be the source of sin, because Jesus Christ said, “There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.” (Mark 7:15).  In fact, God’s Law (commandments) were given to impugn fallen (wo)man with guilt, encouraging them to come to Christ for deliverance and salvation. Adam’s and Eve’s consciousnesses were impugned with guilt the moment they disobeyed God’s command not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Was God’s command the source of their sin or was it their noncompliance with his law that caused them to fall into sin, and consequently drag the whole of humanity into a pit of fallenness and lostness? Perish the thought!

[. . .] the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe. But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.[and NOT by telling your story or learning how to pastorally use an occult technique like “Narrative Therapy”). But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. (Galatians 3:22-25).

The moment you start re-interpreting Scripture, the Law, and concepts like guilt, sin, salvation, and resurrection, the downward path to another gospel, another Jesus and another spirit is inevitable. That’s precisely the path Ricœur and many of his protégés have taken. Ricœur continues,

“Guilt cannot, in fact, express itself, except in the indirect language of “captivity” and “infection,” inherited from the two prior stages. Thus both symbols are transposed “inward” to express a freedom that enslaves itself, affects itself, and infects itself by its own choice. Conversely, the symbolic and non-literal character of the captivity of sin and the infection of defilement becomes quite clear when these symbols are used to denote a dimension of freedom itself; then and only then do we know that they are symbols, when they reveal a situation that is centered in the relation of oneself to oneself. Why this recourse to the prior symbolism? Because the paradox of a captive free will – the paradox of a servile will – is insupportable for thought. That freedom must be delivered and that this deliverance is deliverance from self-enslavement cannot be said directly; yet it is the central theme of “salvation” [10]. (Emphasis added]

Symbols and metaphors and their non-literal character have become the steppingstones to a dimension of freedom itself, a freedom to dream God’s dream for your life, to use your imagination in ways you never dreamed were possible, and ultimately to create your own reality and future, “the central theme of salvation,” as Ricœur preferred to call it. Manly P. Hall says,

“Symbols are keyholes to doors in the walls of space, and through them man peers into Eternity… Symbolism, then, is the divine language, and its figures are a celestial alphabet…”[11].

Roberta H. Lamerson, F.R.C. asserts,

“…symbolical rites are the external expressions of man’s inward desire to unite with Divinity.[12].

K. Demasure and J Muller write,

julian muller - Narrative Therapy
Julian Muller
K. Demasure  - Narrative Therapy
Karlijn Demasure

Social constructionism prefers storytelling to an argumentative discourse. K. Gergen provides several reasons for this: Whilst using an argumentative discourse, one rapidly falls into the trap of considering the other as an opponent and not as somebody participating in the construction of meaning. In addition to that, the perception of the individual as a coherent entity, as we know it from modernism, has as a consequence that we manifest ourselves one-sidedly. There are different voices in us and one of these voices will have the upper hand. This leads to an over-simplified point of view, which makes it difficult to reach an agreement. Telling stories clearly avoids these disadvantages. People recognise themselves more easily in stories than in concepts. Stories are known in all cultures and everybody has used them, from childhood on. Furthermore, the public is involved in the story. A story recalls images and feelings and people suffer and celebrate together with the persons in the story. And eventually, a story leads to acceptance instead of resistance.[13]

It follows that religion and its doctrines, arguably the most potent sphere of division in mankind’s milieu of existence (Matthew 10:34–36), need to be cast into more flexible dyes to grant people the opportunity to communicate fundamental truths (such as in the Bible), in terms of their own experiences through dreams, metaphors, symbols, and imagination. The text itself loses its literalness to make way for, as Muller and Demasure assert, “A story [that] recalls images [symbols, metaphors] and feelings [so that the] people [who] suffer [may] celebrate together with the persons in the story. And eventually, a story leads to acceptance instead of resistance.”

There is a vast difference between the acceptance of an individual who was made in the image of God, like yourself, and the acceptance of his or her beliefs. Bible-believing Christians are exhorted not only to accept someone else but to love everyone, even though they may be your enemy (Matthew 5:44), but in the same breath says that they may not participate or acknowledge other faiths or belief systems (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).

Resistance is the antipathy of oneness, right relationships, and harmony, so they say. Nowadays, many  Christians, among them Evard Huisamen of the Coram Deo Community Church, who deny that the devil and demons are real, have opted for a therapy (a healing process to the achievement of wholeness) that teaches its adherents how to foster right relationships, not only in the communal sense of the word, but also with demonic forces whose purpose it is to destroy mankind and ultimately drag them to the Lake of Fire with them. (John 10:10).

Carl Greer
Carl Greer
Change your story, change your life

Carl Greer of the Theosophical Society, America, and author of “Change Your Story. Change Your Life,” says:

Shamans and Jungians would say one of the reasons we are not able to make changes is that we have some parts of us that don’t want to change. How can one start to engage those parts? That’s why I talk about these practices that help get to these unconscious determinates of our behavior, practices to work with them so that we can have a new relationship with them, so that we are getting information and energy to allow us to make the changes. Shamanism and psychology are similar in many ways because they believe that we have an unconscious set of determinates that live in us and affect us, and it behooves us to have some kind of a relationship with them.

Shamans basically work with energy. They believe they bring things back from the past, and they work with the future. They believe that Spirit-God is in everything, that we came from some place, I call the QUIET as I visited it in my journey, a place before creation, a place before the form of an idea, before anything got energized into being; it’s the realm, it’s the void, the Ein Sof. It’s all of these esoteric places from which energy spring. And from that place, Shamans believe, . . . that we have this world we are part of. We have all the visible things, animals and plants. We have all the other worlds that surround us, we have this universe with all its vastness and all the other universes. But the interesting thing is, we are in the midst of the QUIET, this beginning all the time; it’s not like it was 13 billion years ago. We are in the midst of it now. The Shamans believe that we can with our relationship to these places, the QUIET, cause things to happen that otherwise wouldn’t.

The shamans believe that we can, with our relationship to these places, the “Quiet,” cause things to happen that otherwise wouldn’t. It would be the idea of prayer, somehow interacting with the spirit world to cause things that wouldn’t. It requires a right relationship with those realms. In South American shamanism there’s this term called “Ayni,” A-Y-N-I, that has to do with right relationships; right relationships, right thoughts, right love and right actions – the right thing in the right amount at the right time. And, if we have these right relationships with the spirit world, then we can work with them, not exploit them.

Shamans don’t try to exploit them; they try to work with nature in ways that please nature, ourselves, and the great spirit. Jungians don’t talk as much about the natural world. They’re talking about the intra-psychic, the psychic ways in which these things I’m talking about live within us.

Carl Jung came up with this concept of the collective unconscious where the archetypes, these energies that are invisible, can influence how we think, act and feel, and he feels they’re very real. They go across time and they go across cultures, and they can, as we speak here, they’re influencing us.

So, part of the practices of Jungian psychology and shamanism is to come to grips with and find out which of these energies are working within us so that we can have a new relationship to them, so that we are able to change our story because we have a new relationship with the energies that may be keeping us from being able to change our story. So, what are some of those practices? How does one do that? In traditional depth psychology one of the ways to access those places, is to [do] dream work. Shamans believe in dreams as well, but they also believe in accessing these invisible realms through dreamwork.[14].

One of the more popular concepts in Shamanism is “Soul Retrieval.” Soul-retrieval would be seen most typically as a lower world journey. And a lower world journey is going to those place in our past where we’ve had wounds, we’ve made deals with life, we’ve forsaken parts of ourselves that we would really have liked to be with us  but for some reason we do not have access to, or we may not have come to grips with our constitutional nature, and that’s where people in the shamanic realms start to speak about your pyro-animal [fire or power animal].[15]

So, there’s a journey to go to the lower world, to gain information about the energies that may be keeping you from living the story you would like to live. There’s also, in the shamanic world, upper world journeys; the upper world journey is more, you try to hook into a destiny that’s more desirable than the one you are now hooked into so that you are making decisions in the present that will enable you to get to that destiny in a more elegant way than you could being in the life-cast that you’re now on. And that idea of present decision making is across all esoteric traditions.

[…] but why don’t we make better decisions in the present? The theory that I’m talking about because we have past things that we haven’t resolved yet that keeps us acting in the present in certain patterns and certain ways, that if we can get free of those past things through psychological work, shamanic work, we can make more free elegant decisions in the present . But the other thing that both traditions talk about it is, we are tied into a future which is influencing us in the present. So, if we can be some tying into a better future and some consciously intentional way, that going to allow us to make different decisions than we would in the present, and not be tied into it. So, to think about any kind of psychological and shamanic work is to be freed-up from your past in a new relationship with your future so that you can make better present decisions.

The Mosaïek Kerk in Fairlands, Randburg, under the pastoral guidance of Johan and Theo Geyser, Trevor Hudson and Stephan Joubert, has been practicing and teaching their congregants this kind of anti-God and anti-Christ shamanism for many years (Read here).

I call this “the fool’s blueprint how to cheat and try to escape death, judgment and the eternal Lake of Fire.” [16]

Christianized Shamanism and The New Messiah

Norman Vincent Peale
Norman Vincent Peale
Robert Schuller
Robert Schuller

The new Messiah may be described in terms of a theme with many variations. The main theme occurring throughout mainstream psychiatric, occultic, shamanic practices, and Postmodern Christianity is called “you can create your own reality,” or “You can visualize and create your own future,” and the accompanying variations are known as “Positive Thinking” (Norman Vincent Peale), “Possibility Thinking” (Robert Schuller), and “Positive Confession” (“Positive Speaking”) (Word of Faith Movement). All these concepts are based on Jungian psychology and Shamanic philosophy (wizardry).

A more recent variation on this theme was introduced to the world by two South African women, Drs. Caroline Leaf and Michelle Strydom, known as Neuroplasticity, a so-called science of mind that teaches anyone, Bible-believing Christians and unbelievers alike, how to change their bad thoughts and patterns into good and wholesome ones. (Source).  An offshoot of these variations is “The Law of Attraction” which the following few quotes explain.

“The law of attraction states that whatever you focus on, think about, read about, and talk about intensely, you’re going to attract more of into your life.” –  Jack Canfield.

“Ask for what you want and be prepared to get it.” – Maya Angelou.

“It’s unlimited what the universe can bring when you understand the great secret that thoughts become things.” – Anonymous.

“What you think, you create. What you feel, you attract. What you imagine, you become.” – Anonymous.

“Thoughts become things. If you see it in your mind, you will hold it in your hand.” – Bob Proctor.

“Your thoughts are the architects of your destiny.” David O. McKay

Having established that “Narrative Therapy” has a vivid affinity with Jungian psychology, the question arises whether Carl Jung’s theory of “Active Imagination” and “Narrative Therapy” have any connection with Shamanism. First, we need to identify the unique characteristics of a Shaman. The literature on shamanism generally describes a shaman as a specially gifted person who has the parapsychological ability to contact and commune with spirit beings.

Marsha West writes:

Psychiatrist Carl Gustav Jung changed the way we think about the human psyche. For those who have never heard of him, he was the foremost pioneer of dream analysis, which is the process of assigning meaning to dreams. In many ancient traditions dreams were considered to be messages from the gods.

Jung’s research asserts the concept of an impersonal or “collective unconscious” (a type of library containing everything ever known) present in each person’s unconscious. The inspiration came to Jung from contacting the spirit realm. Jung claimed that his spirit guide, Philemon…was a source of information that gave him crucial insights….Jung placed a “scientific” footing under occult phenomenaa and mystical experience. Jung was deeply involved in the occult and did his doctoral thesis on parapsychology. He also was interested in Catholic mysticism and conducted seminars on the teachings of Ignatius Loyola.”

The lie detector test and the Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) are also based on Jung’s theories. MBTI is a personality and psychological test to see what makes people tick.

Carl Jung was a “spiritual thinker” who offered Western culture a way back to religion that places no shame on being human. Spiritual teacher, codependency therapist and author, Robert Burney, agrees with Jung: “We are not sinful, shameful human creatures who have to somehow earn Spirituality. We are Spiritual Beings having a human experience.”

If Burney’s assertion is correct, and the human race isn’t sinful, then the Bible is nothing more than myths and fables — and Jesus was a nut job for declaring He was the Son of God who came into the world to die for the sins of all mankind. Jesus clearly taught that we are sinners, with a capital S, and “fall short of the glory of God.” Sin was the reason Jesus went to the cross. His death was payment for mankind’s sin debt. Thus He threw open the gates of heaven, and all who believe in Him will be reconciled to God. If it’s true that we are merely “Spiritual Beings having a human experience” as Burney claims, the Son of God would have had no reason to leave His throne in heaven and come to Earth. Which is Burney’s whole point! If we’re not sinners, we have no need of a Savior![17]

The Berean Call reports:

Carl Jung, not too long before he died, began to have second thoughts about the real existence of these spirit entities. Maybe they were real after all. Some of you may know that he was involved in séances. He saw ghosts. Carl Jung grew up in a haunted house. So did his mother. As a teenager she kept the spirits at bay long enough for her father (Jung’s grandfather), who was a medium, Master Mason and Protestant minister, to write out his Sunday sermon. Even later in life Jung tells of spending several weekends in a vacation house that turned out to be haunted. He was awakened one weekend by a loud boom on the wall right by his head. There opposite him on the pillow was the face of a woman with half her head blown away and she was as real as life. Of course, he leaped out of bed a bit frightened, but he had seen this kind of thing many times. He was involved in this sort of thing and he explained it as an exteriorization of inner thoughts. We know from the Bible it was demonic.[18].

In Theosophy (and in particular the spiritual movement that Alice Bailey and her husband, Foster Bailey, birthed out of the theosophical society with Djual Kuhl their chief spirit guide), these spirit beings are called “Ascended Masters,” They are believed to be spiritually enlightened beings who lived in a place before creation, were incarnated as humans at different times in human history, but have undergone a series of spiritual transformations called initiations. Wikipedia reports:

Both “Mahatma” and “Ascended Master” are terms used in the Ascended Master Teachings. Ascended Master is based on the theosophical concept of the Mahatma or Masters of the Ancient Wisdom. However, Mahatmas and Ascended Masters are believed by some to differ in certain respects.

According to the Ascended Master Teachings, a “Master”, “Commoner”, “Shaman”, or “Spiritual Master” is a human being who has taken the Fifth Initiation and is thereby capable of dwelling on the 5th dimension. An “Ascended Master” is a human being who has taken the Sixth Initiation, also referred to as Ascension, and is thereby capable of dwelling on the 6th dimension. An “Ascended Master” is a human being who has regained full union with his “Mighty I AM Presence.” When a human being has regained full union with his “Mighty I AM Presence,” that state of full union is referred to as “Ascension.” Technically, a human being “ascends” when he takes the Sixth Initiation, and not before then. [19]

God’s Word simply calls them demons or fallen angels who now masquerade as angels of light or as the Christ (2 Corinthians 11:13-15). Many mainline churches, among them the Coram Deo Community Church and their pastors are paving a way to an eternity in hell for multitudes of people and making them pay for it (between R8 000 and R9 000 per annum in a two-year-long course called “Pastoral Narrative Therapy”). Actually, it should be called the way of Balaam.

They have eyes full of adultery, constantly looking for sin, enticing and luring away unstable souls. Having hearts trained in greed, [they are] children of a curse. Abandoning the straight road [that is, the right way to live], they have gone astray; they have followed the way of [the false teacher] Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the reward of wickedness; (2 Peter 2:14-15).

Most South Africans are gravely concerned about the cancerous political and social corruption that is consuming the fiber of our nation. God’s righteous wrath is not resting on South Africa because of the political intrigue, social injustices, corruption and money laundering so rampant in our land. The mainline churches are calling down God’s wrath on South Africa with their abominable shamanic wizardries (Mysticism and Shamanism in the Mosaïek Kerk in Frairlands, Johannesburg, the Coram Deo Community Church, NAR Churches such as The Base Church in Krugersdorp, and just about every Charismatic and Pentecostal Church imaginable). They are doing precisely what Israel did many centuries ago (1 Corinthians 10:1-9).

Warning!

If you know of anyone who is involved in churches that teach these things or are participating in the “Pastoral Narrative Therapy” courses, please warn them to come out of them.

And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. (Revelation 18:4).

See all articles on Contemplative Spirituality / Mysticism



[1] The University of Pretoria’s Coram Deo Narrative Pastoral course will cost you a whopping R9 000 per annum. Genuine pastoral counseling based on God’s Word is not for sale. Jesus Christ said: “freely ye have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:8).

[2] https://www.lucistrust.org/world_goodwill/plan_wg

[3] Charon: Narrative Medicine: Honoring the Stories of Illness, 65-66

[4] https://www.gaia.com/article/shamanic-ritual

[5] THE UNFINISHED AUTOBIOGRAPHY by Alice Bailey.

[6] https://positivepsychology.com/narrative-therapy/

[7] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Ricœur

[8] Paul Ricœur, The Conflict of Interpretations

[9] Ibid

[10] Ibid

[11] Manly P. Hall, Lectures on Ancient Philosophy (Philosophical Research Society, 1984), p.357. Hall was one of the 20th century’s greatest and most celebrated esoteric philosophers, founder of the Philosophical Research Society, eminent Freemason, and a respected lecturer on occult doctrines and the Mystery Religions.

[12] Roberta H. Lamerson, F.R.C. “Initiation,” Rosicrucian Digest, November 1984, p.21.

[13] PERSPECTIVES IN SUPPORT OF THE NARRATIVE TURN IN PASTORAL CARE. Demasure, K & Muller, J, University of Pretoria

[14] The Mosaiek Kerk in Fairlands, Randburg, South Africa presented a whole series called “En Droom” (“And Dream”) in May this year.

{15] Historically, Shamanic ritual lives inside the heart of Indigenous cultures. Rituals, ranging from simple to complex, are a way to step out of the mundane of everyday life, to connect to spiritual life, and to lift the veil between the visible and the invisible realms. Ancient shamanic rituals have been practiced since the beginning of time. At their core, they aim to restore wholeness to individuals and communities, where a genuine reciprocity is formed between humanity, spirit, and nature.

According to Dean Edwards, “Shamanism is a “technique of ecstasy” in which the spirit of the shaman leaves the body and travels to communicate with spirit helpers and other beings for the purpose of obtaining knowledge, power or healing.”

Skilled Shamans are able to cut through the veils unique to the individual to receive information to restore vitality, balance, and wholeness to the individual, the community or cause. Shamanic rituals are created and performed to connect individuals with plant, animal and spirit guide allies. They carry the potential to reweave and bring home parts of us that are disconnected or lost, remembering a calling of our destiny. Shamanic practices such as calling in the directions, smudging, going on a journey to retrieve a power animal or a soul part, and a fire ceremony to name a few, are examples of how the shaman can encourage the individual or the cause back to its natural state of wholeness.
 
Shamanic wisdom is gaining momentum in the 21st century as we are now being called to come together for peace, equality, and a new understanding of unity on a global scale. At the heart of the Shamanism are the following core beliefs:
 
1) Everything is alive and has a life force (the term for this is animism).
2) Our “concrete” or “material” world is only the beginning, and this “conceptual shift” opens up the possibility to connect with the realms of spirit.
3) Everything and everyone is our teacher.
4) Compassion and a deep union with nature allow us to see and live from the eyes of our heart, the practice of living in this way brings illumination to all aspects of life.
5) Each individual has the birthright and responsibility to communicate with the spirit world directly.
 
From ancient to modern times, Shamanic ritual is diverse and unique within each culture. What remains consistent is the intention to weave the sacred into the ordinary ways of life to bring forth wholeness. There is an understanding that Shamanic ritual is a way to strengthen your inner body so that you have more tools to work with your personal challenges- not a way to be healed completely. The key is strengthening the connection to your inner spirit. This is a practice of working with spirit, working to shift patterns in your psyche and potentially release old wounds or traumas within. (Source).

[16] https://www.wakingtimes.com/2019/01/17/death-and-dying-from-a-shamanic-perspective/

[17] Carl Jung: Psychologist or Sorceror? [Excerpts].

[18] https://www.thebereancall.org/content/july-1986-q-and-a-1

[19] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ascended_master

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Tom (Discerning the World)

Tom Lessing is the author of the above article. Discerning the World is an internet Christian Ministry based in Johannesburg South Africa. Tom Lessing and Deborah Ellish both own Discerning the World. For more information see the About this Website page below the comments section.

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