Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Malevolence and Meditation

The word meditation has many connotations, and if you study on it, you will see that it has a variety of meanings. Some folks might think of formal meditation practices used in Eastern religions, but others may be pondering something and call that "meditating". Meditation is popular nowadays, but what do people really mean by it?

There are many forms of meditation in use today, but they can lead to unpleasant experiences and occult influence. Christians are told to meditate, but we must do it the right way.
Credit: Unsplash / Yogi Madhav
If you spend a great deal of time thinking and focusing on something (or someone), you're meditating on it. Take a gander at what people are doing and see if you agree with me. They meditate on church activities, politics, global climate change hysteria, sports, a favorite musician, sex, and so on. (I remember hearing a caller to a political talk radio show and the host exclaimed, "Your religion is liberalism!" The caller replied, "Yes!") This can also have a negative thrust. I can name a few atheists and anti-creationists who essentially meditate on their hatred for God's Word. See Psalm 38:12, for example.

We have to be careful when using Christian meditation. There are people who will tell you to avoid it because New Agers, Eastern yogis and other occultists use meditation techniques. That can be guilt by association; occultists breathe air, too, shall we avoid that because they do it? (I'll allow that my example is hyperbolic, but I hope it gets the idea across.) However, caution is advised.

I used to oppose the concept that people can get into certain states of consciousness and open themselves up to occult influences. Even materialists are seeing negative effects resulting from meditation. Notice also that such practices are often used by people who are indulging in other occult and paranormal practices.

You may be surprised to learn that Christians are told to meditate. The main point is to focus on the Word of God (Psalm 1:2, Psalm 77:12, 1 Timothy 4:15 KJV), not on ourselves or other things.
What is meditation? It can be very different things. It can be an attempt to empty the mind. Or, by contrast, it can be the purposeful attempt to focus the mind with certain kinds of thoughts, to the exclusion of other thoughts. The word meditation by itself needs modifiers to be meaningful. The intuitive picture people have of meditators is that they are sitting in some kind of lotus position, with eyes closed, doing something. But what? And what are the consequences of whatever they are doing in their inner selves?

At New Scientist, Donna Lu reports that “A quarter of people who meditate experience negative mental states.” That’s a surprisingly high percentage for an activity widely advertised to be beneficial.
 To read the entire article, click on "Some Meditation Practices Can Be Scary".