Church Condemns Reiki & New Age Movement

I am sitting in my hotel room in Denver at 4am in the morning awaiting to make several appearances on Colorado TV and radio. This gives me an opportunity to bring to your attention several articles I discovered on my cross-atlantic journey that I think you should know about. The first was a short piece in yesterday’s “Guardian” entitled, “Catholic bishops in US ban Japanese reiki.” Guidelines issued by the US Catholic Church warn of the dangers of reiki, the Japanese New Age therapy that seeks to improve health through channeling energy. Reiki translates as ‘universal life energy’ and as many of you know is gaining popularity in today’s New Age culture. The church dismiss it because it “lacks scientific credibility” and could expose patients to “malevolent forces.” Talk about the kettle calling the pot black. One Christian reiki expert said that the church has misunderstood the channeling of energy to mean spirits. It’s all the SuperSense at work to me.  I looked into this further and found a really interesting Pontifical report on the New Age movement that made me realize that the church is worried about the switch in spiritual allegiance that appears to be taking place in Western culture. Far from assuming that Christians can entertain a variety of belief systems, the Vatican is concerned at the prospect of the erosion of Christianity by New Age beliefs and practices.

Here’s something I did not know ( and a good reason to keep reading rather than ignoring beliefs if you are a skeptic like me). Do you know why it is called the “New Age?” This is because the two thousand years period after Christ is known as the age of Aries by astrologers and as it draws to a close, we have the new Age of Aquarius. I remember the hippie song about “this is the dawning of the new age of Aquarius,” but I did not understand the reference. So the church has a good historical reason to fear the times are a changing. Ironically, that fear is based on astrology, another belief system the Vatican tried to condemn. I think that the current tension that many of us see between the religious and the atheist is misplaced. I think the real turf wars are going to take place within the spiritual realm as each group struggles to fight for or retain popularity. Again how ironic that natural selection will probably shape the face of the spiritual landscape of the future. In my opinion, one thing is for certain. That landscape will always have the SuperSense as I think it is the natural disposition of humans to believe in the unbelievable.


Filed under atheism, In the News

18 responses to “Church Condemns Reiki & New Age Movement

  1. Arno

    Actually, the time after Christ is the astrological age of Pisces: these astrological ages seems to go in reverse compared to the smaller annual cycles.
    It is absolute bullshit for various reasons though: 1. according to astrology, the astrological age of Pisces will actually still last another 500 years or so, so whoever claimed that Aquarius is already here, is a bit ahead of time.
    2. the connections between the astrological age and world events are weak at best (“Age of Leo was the age of the great melting at the last Ice Age and that is because Leo is a Sun sign” WTF???!!!!) and utterly imaginary at worst (just like annual astrology then).
    3. Everyone knows that the real New Age is the Aeon of Horus, which started in 1904 when The Book Of The Law was cited by Nuit, Hadith and the Infant Horus! It even had two world wars afterwards as clear proof that the new ruler is a war deity!
    Astrology my ass… pffft…

    • Ted

      The cruel lie that ,anyone can obtain god status is the same lie that was told to Eve in the garden of eden. An ancient lie that eve and subsequently Adam was added to the equation. The deception is that each of these charlatans and dead people, actually preaches “Death”, and gather themselves together other dead people who want exactly what they are advocating, and get lots of money doing it (telling people how to get a hold of demons who can disguise themselves in the “it feels good to me category, so it must be true and reality to me, yeah right, I fit square pegs in round holes for a living). Horus had his eye put out from Set and away they go. Warmonger, that`s what you get for fighting with your brother. Cain and Abel is the truth, and Abel was murdered and Cain was cursed. Wow blow me away.

    • cas

      Years ago I became interested in astrology to point I learned how to do charts. Guess what. Thought I saw “illness” coming to my sister. Guess what. It did. Almost immediately. There are spiritual forces… Light and dark. The darkness used my prediction to cause my sister to have 1 1/2 feet of her bowel removed. 21 yrs. old. Had abdom. pain. Her doctor was from hell… and wrongly removed the bowel because she believed it. Cancer later in life. Her doctor from UofChgo searched records… Guess what… no record of a problem in her colon at 21. Satan is real. God gave us instructions you can read in Leviticus 18 to protect us from these kind of forces. Out of love. As far as article I agree with feelings about the Catholic church. They call themselves catholics when they do something good… then they’re “christians” when something bad… why? Because their roots comes from lies … not God.

  2. poietes

    This Matt guy gets around, and he makes the same comments on everyone’s blog.

    That being said, I like the idea of natural selection among religions. It is too appropos and somewhat amusing to someone like me.

    But I agree, Bruce, that it is the natural disposition of humans to believe in the unbelievable. Which means that we are back to goat innards for predicting the future, right?

    • steve

      believing the unbeleivable, like undesigned dna code required for even the simplest organism generating in statistically impossible conditions?

  3. Maureen

    Hi Bruce,
    As always, a thought provoking post.I think if it comes to a natural selection turf war, the new age movement is going win, hands down.
    Good luck with your promotional tour.
    Best wishes

  4. It’s hard for opposing absolutes to get along. It’s a crowded house, and there is only so much room…

  5. okathleen

    This tickled me, especially coming a few days after His Royal Highness Richard Dawkins calling the Pope ‘stupid’.

    The Holy Father thinks the use of condoms might increase Aids in Africa.

    God love him.

  6. I think you’re going into this way too deep, Bruce.

    Personally, I reckon that if the church does indeed have “reason to fear the times are a changing”, it’s down to the fact that modern altar boys are wise to the ways of catholic priests.

  7. Carolyn

    I’m coming to this discussion late, and I actually don’t have anything to add to the main topic of mainstream religion versus “New Age” spirituality because I really don’t know much about it, but I did have a thought about reiki. OK, I don’t know much about reiki either… but I do know people who absolutely swear that it has helped their severe pain and I also know someone who practices it at our local community hospital (which is affiliated with one of the premiere hospitals in the state, so, gosh, I hope there is some scientific evidence… but anyway)… I also know someone who has been a nurse for 50 years or so who has told me that what she sees as missing in nursing today is human-to-human touch (she used to, for example, give back rubs, which apparently is not done anymore), that being touched in a caring way is, in her experience, healing in itself, especially if you are sick, scared, and in pain. Which leads me to wonder if, physical evidence for universal energy aside, at least some complementary therapies–like reiki, massage, etc.–have a “real” (i.e., not necessarily supersensory) effect in relieving suffering simply because of the healing emotional (and possibly physical) effects of the person-to-person connection that in inherent in them. Just a thought…

  8. Paul mack

    reiki is not new age, n or new age related. it was a healing method founded by a a Japanese man who wanted to help people.
    He climbed a mntn., total fasted for 40 days, at the end of that time, he was hit with a flash of light in the forehead and passed out.
    Upon waking, he went back down, and found he had the ability to heal people.
    He bagan healing people and soon found that those he had healed began getting ill again due to their poor spiritual dispositons. disgusted with this, he healed only those who were sincere, and humble.
    Reiki is not new age, new age is communist in origin, and is about pagan practices.

    I had for 20 years, several illnesses. I ardently and faithfully sought healing withing the church; oil annointings, hands on prayer, confession, hrs and hrs of personal prayer for years…and found n healing.
    desperately I found a reiki healer and did a phone session. I was healed of a few of my illnesses. Was i ever glad after so long to find healing !
    Reiki teaches that we all have it within us to heal ourselves. It also teaches that illnesses go deeply generational and that’s why we find it hard to heal. this in the church is called passing down of original sin. Also remember the scripture: the sins of the fathers are passed down to the sons till the 4th generation. This is why we find it hard to heal sometimes.
    Reiki finds a way to get to the bottom of this sin that is right down to our DNA.

    Those who cant heal others, cant because original sin is down to their DNA, passed on through generations. This is why healers cant heal. It’s not an accusation but a conditon. Its not a lack of faith but again it’s a human condition.
    For whatever reason, reiki found its way into my deepest self and healed me. is this new age ? No. Was the founder of reiki new age ? No.
    Am i saying to ditch the catholic faith for other religions? No. the origin of new age is Soviet Russia. How can reiki being a gift to a Japanese man be of soviet origin ?

    Reiki broke through the generational sin of my recent and distant ancestors that passed down to me.
    Baptism is about being saved with Jesus not about being generationally healed.
    Reiki teaches that its within the power of our inner spirit to heal ourselves and others.
    Like any gift, not all can appreciate it or administer it for many reasons, including that individuals have different gifts. So its why we share our talents with others.

    I was healed and I still say praise be to Jesus as he is the source of all lhealing. Reiki is just a method of His gift.

  9. This makes me mad. Now if I get sick and go to my hospital I can not have a reike professional work with me for it is catholic hospital. It is a shame.

  10. Sherry Stewart

    I know for a fact that the world needs to get on its needs and pray for forgiveness and repent! Repentance means to turn away and the evil spirits will flee from you! I have much inspiration and prophecy that the Lord Jesus has told me to write. I am a Prophetess who hears the Voice of God Almighty! Please email me at and leave your email and name. I will gladly add you to my online ministry and guarantee you will read the TRUTH and the TRUTH will set you free!

  11. one love

    religion is man made and spirituality is god given…. religious people are doing everything they can to stay out of hell, and spiritual people have already been there.

  12. Ben

    if a person has ‘Fear of the Lord’ then they will make the right choice in life.

  13. Judy

    I agree with a comment made above that Reiki is not “New Age,,” and that New Age is Communist in origin and about pagaen practices. Also, yes, “religion” is about people striving to get to heaven whereas “spirituality” is about people who have been to hell and back. Personally, I think “New Age” is a bunch of BS. Why does the mind constantly feel the need to conjure up new waves of thinking? As a Catholic, I am firm in my beliefs and don’t feel the need to be led astray by this crap. I have a faith, and I am firm in it. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Savior. And the Bible is the greatest book that was ever written. Some people just insist on interpreting it in a twisted manner.

  14. Thanks for the information. This is a very useful blog…what is reiki.

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