* Note: This is not a complete list of New Age terms, but it is sufficient to understand the concepts of the movement, as well as those that appear in our novels. Stars by words mean they're elsewhere in the glossary.
A - C
Altered state of consciousness. Loren and Eve's focus, and the purpose of the Arcane Institute, is to achieve an altered state of consciousness—a supernatural, mystical state achieved by non-biblical means, such as Eastern meditation and psychedelic drugs. This state can give a false sense of transcendence and “oneness” with the universe, as well as feelings that one is God.
Aquarian/Aquarius. According to astrology.com, “Aquarius is the eleventh sign of the zodiac, and Aquarians are the perfect representatives for the Age of Aquarius. Those born under this horoscope sign have the social conscience needed to carry us into the new millennium.”
Arcane Institute. Arcane is a general term that includes several different groups, such as the Gnostics, the Hermeticists, the Neo-Platonists, etc. It means secret, mysterious, deep, as well as esoteric (see definition below). So, the Arcane Institute in The Glittering Web is dedicated to training its disciples in these schools. Arcane also means relating to or characterized by occultism, alchemy (Hermeticism), magic, or whatever is obscure and mysterious. Thus, the Arcane Institute is a place devoted to studying the esoteric, occult mysteries through the secret magical arts.
Archetypes. A concept created by shaman/psychiatrist Carl Jung, archetypes are supposedly archaic psychic remnants or primordial mental images that seem innate in human minds and have a life of their own. Said to be either creative or destructive. See Jung, Carl below.
Astral projection. The occult idea that the soul can leave the physical body, fly around, and return. Also called an out-of-body experience.
Automatic writing. When a spirit is said to take control of a person, either entirely or partially, and cause that person to write something. Also called channeling. Eve experiences this under Jasmine's tutelage.
Black Brotherhood. The opponents of the White Brotherhood in the supernatural world, they represent "bad" magic as opposed to "good," the forces of darkness, demons, etc., as opposed to the good ones.
Cabala (Kabbalah, Kabala, Qabalah). A book of Jewish mysticism based on several occult practices that seek to combine ancient occultism and Judaism. It's also a distortion of the Old Testament and even claims that Adam had a first wife before Eve named Lilith, who was a witch. It was promoted in the time of the Renaissance, and today is being promoted among the Hollywood elites. Madonna calls herself a follower of the Cabala.
Chakras. According to the occult practices of certain forms of Hinduism and Tantric Buddhism, chakras are psychic-energy centers in the human body that regulate its processes.
Channeling. The modern label for spiritualism and mediumship. Channeling is opening oneself up to demons who often pretend to be loved ones who have passed on or ascended spiritual masters.
When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? (Isaiah 8:19)
Collective unconscious. A concept created by shaman/psychiatrist Carl Jung, it teaches that humans have a collective psychic inheritance we cannot grasp or integrate directly. It supposedly becomes known through a transcendent function of the psyche working to achieve self-actualization through dream symbols, mythology, and religious ideas. See Jung, Carl below.
Cult. A religious group that pretends to be Christian but basically denies the fundamental doctrines and/or practices of Christianity.
D - F
Divination. There are many methods of divination, but all attempt to foretell the future.
Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you. You must be blameless before the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 18:10–13)
Earth Day. First celebrated in 1970, Earth Day’s original purpose was to promote the understanding of environmental issues though it also quickly developed a strong religious focus on unity with the earth. An Earth Day network now coordinates the event in 184 countries. See Linda’s blog post about Earth Day and its connection with The Glittering Web here.
Eastern religions. Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Confucianism.
Eco-feminism. A women's movement believing in personal transformation through female divinity and the sacredness of the earth. It is basically idolatry and witchcraft.
Ecology, deep. A mystical form of earth stewardship that rejects mainline tradition. In our book's near-future world, this view has run amuck.
Eco-theology. The belief that there is a religious connection with the earth.
Education, Transpersonal. Focuses on developing children's "evolving consciousness" by helping them contact their "inner divinity."
Enlightenment. In the New Age sense, it means discovering one's own godhood through a mystical, occult spiritual awakening. This has nothing to do with coming to God through faith in Jesus Christ but is a demonic counterfeit of the biblical experience.
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved. (Eph. 2:1–5)
Esoteric. Elite, superior, above mere mortals. Like hidden treasure, it is only for certain people. See Arcane Institute.
G - I
Gaia. Gaia is the Greek word for earth, which is also a biological concept that life on earth is one living being. Many use the term Gaia to apply to the earth as a goddess--a very trendy view today. In fact, it’s so popular our story has a “Gaia Dome” in Seattle—not too farfetched in our opinion! This popular form of pagan earth worship came from well-known atmospheric scientist James Lovelock more than 20 years ago. Its premise is that the Earth is alive and divine.
Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry. (1 Cor. 10:14)
Global brain. The idea that the minds of all humans on the planet are part of one mind. Some New Age views hold that those who don't believe in the New Age Movement are cancer cells in that world mind that need excision.
Globalism. Belief in a one-world government or a political unity of nations.
Gnosticism. Gnosis is the Greek word for knowledge. This philosophy, which challenged and was rejected by the early Christian Church, taught that the path to God was by secret knowledge from an enlightened teacher, not by faith in Jesus Christ. It denied basic Christian teaching such as the incarnation, resurrection, atonement, and Christ's deity. It is still alive and influential today. See Ephesians 2:1–5.
Helix. Spiral in form, like DNA.
Heresy. Religious beliefs opposing historic orthodox Christian doctrine.
Hermetic arts. Some say that Hermeticism began in Germany in the 1600s, and others say they go back to pre-Christian Egypt. The Western system of ancient magic is usually known as the Hermetic arts and sciences. It was named after Hermes Trismegistus, the supposed founder. It includes the Qabalah (or cabala, the supposed “secret wisdom of Israel”), alchemy, esoteric astrology, and Tarot, as well as various magical disciplines. Learn more at Richard’s blog at gloriousriches.blogspot.com.
Holistic/wholistic. Originally it meant merely a comprehensive approach, but the New Age version means seeing all reality as one (known as monism) with no distinction between the Creator and the created or between good and evil.
Human Potential psychology. The view that human spiritual potential is unlimited. Some contemporary American business practices promote this view.
Hypnosis. An altered state of consciousness in which one's will surrenders to another in order to accomplish some change. This procedure can open a person up to occult influences. Highly recommended: Hypnosis: Medical, Scientific, or Occultic? by Martin & Deidre Bobgan.
I Ching. An ancient Chinese form of divination popularized by Carl Jung who revived it in contemporary form. See Jung, Carl.
Inner child. The idea that within every adult is a child that represents the adult's view of the way they were treated as a child. Also considered by some as a Jungian archetype.
J - L
Jung, Carl G. Carl Jung is widely considered one of the Fathers of the New Age Movement. See our in-depth article about the problems with Jung's Gnostic "psychiatry" at http://www.crossroad.to/articles2/08/nathan/jung.htm. Also recommended: The Jung Cult: Origins of a Charismatic Movement by Richard Noll. At one time, we studied in depth with a psychologist who had studied with Jung in Switzerland, and thus we are intimately acquainted with Jung’s Gnostic psychology. It has influenced Christian counseling movements, churches, and even many seminaries.
Kali. The Hindu goddess of death and destruction.
Karma. The law of moral consequences in which one works out one's salvation through works from life to life. Good deeds lead to evolution of the soul and evil deeds lead to degradation.
Kundalini/Serpent Power. Said by Hinduism and Buddhism to be the essential life force coiled at the base of the spine, which when aroused through meditation rises through the spine and opens chakras, nodes of psychic power. When it reaches the head, and all the chakras are open, the "thousand-petaled lotus" then supposedly opens and brings enlightenment.
M - O
Marriage Feast of Omega Man and Gaia. This is our satire of New Age wackiness.
Meditation. Eastern and Western forms differ regarding the mind's focus and content. Western methods involve concentrating on a subject, for instance in order to discern and apply the meaning to one's life, while Eastern forms attempt to experience "universal Oneness" by emptying the mind. See Linda’s booklet about this issue, Dangers & Deceptions of the Martial Arts (Lighthouse Trails Publishing).
May these words of my mouth
Mind Science. The belief and practice that all is mind and mind is God, that through mind we control God and our lives.
Monism. The religious idea that the created universe and God are one being. This is in contrast to the orthodox Christian view that God created the universe and is outside of it except when He chooses to enter.
Mysticism. Belief in the direct or intuitive attainment of communion with God or of spiritual truths rather than through faith in Jesus Christ.
Neo-pagan. The modern resurgence of belief and worship of nature deities and nature itself; earth religions. Wicca is the best known, neo-pagan religion.
Neo-Romanticism. The resurgence in the mid 1800s and the 1960s of the historical movement of Romanticism. See Romanticism below.
Occultism. The mystic arts, such as magic, astrology, communing with demons, etc. Occult means hidden or concealed. The Bible makes plain what we should do with any occult objects or books, regardless of price.
A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas. (Acts 19:19)
P - R
Pagan. Usually a member of a polytheistic nature religion.
Pantheism. The religious idea that God is everything and that everything, including our souls, is God. This is the opposite of Christian theism, which believes God created the world as something different from Himself.
Panentheism. The doctrine that God includes the world as a part though not the whole of his being. (Merriam-Webster Online Unabridged Dictionary)
Plan, The. The belief that the world is being healed by its evolution into a one-world, harmonious society that includes all religions except biblical Christianity.
Psychedelic drugs. Drugs such as LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, and Psilocybin that open hidden parts of the mind, produce visions, and can open one to demonic contact and mystical, non-Christian states of consciousness. Marijuana should also be included these days because the current weed is enormously more powerful than it used to be, to the point of being hallucinogenic in many cases. See Linda’s booklet, The Cross & the Marijuana Leaf (Lighthouse Trails Publishing) .
Psychoguru. Although the term is our invention, it accurately reveals the close connection between some branches of modern psychology and the occult, e.g., transpersonal psychology. (See Psychology, Transpersonal.) Famed psychologist Carl Rogers advocated for occult methods and thus fits our definition of a “psychoguru.” Further, psychologists have in many ways become society’s new “gurus,” replacing the Christian Church in the care of souls.
Psychology, Transpersonal. A school of psychology resulting from a marriage between humanistic psychology (i.e., Maslow, Carl Rogers, etc.), Jungian views, and Eastern and drug-induced mysticism that emerged during the ‘60s and ‘70s. The Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California, is a prime example of such an approach (and its popularity).
Rainbow Bridge. The belief that the imagination is the key to crossing from earth to heaven and gaining spiritual enlightenment. See Visualization.
Reincarnation. The occult theory that souls migrate from one life to another, inhabiting a new body.
Romanticism. A movement popular in the 1800s that turned to intuition and inner states, nature worship, dream interpretation, and fascination with paganism, the occult, intuition, poetry, feelings, imagination, and religion. Originally a reaction to the exaltation of rationalism. It exploded into popularity in the 1960s hippie/drug movement and through the publication of such books as The Lord of the Rings, the Narnia stories, and a lot of today’s speculative fiction. Today, as in Loren and Eve's world, it is everywhere.
S - Z
Shamanism. A Shaman is a witch doctor. The term is popular in pagan religions.
Shambhala. A mythical kingdom in Hindu and Tibetan Buddhist tradition, Shambhala is said by New Age practitioners to be the site of the White Brotherhood.
Shiva. Shiva is the third god in the Hindu trilogy of three gods who are responsible for the creation, upkeep, and destruction of the world. The other two gods are Brahma and Vishnu.
Silence, The. The purpose of contemplative prayer, a mystical method, is to enable one to enter an empty mystical silence through a kind of trance state. This is not the same as communing with Christ Jesus through faith in Him; instead, it utilizes un-biblical and spiritually dangerous occult methods and can take a person into an un-biblical, anti-Christian mystical and demonic realm.
Space Brothers/UFO cults. A mainstream part of the New Age Movement is a belief in a worldwide transformation assisted by UFOs and beings from outer space, both physical and spiritual. Many proclaim a connection between the Second Coming of Christ, UFOs, and the dawning of the Aquarian Age. The range of beliefs includes thinking the Red Sea parted by flying saucers to higher-order spiritual beings guiding us and making us eternal, to Jesus Christ coming again in a UFO. It fervently rejects traditional Evangelical Christianity and replaces it with a lying "Cosmic Gospel" preaching evolution toward a New Age one-world government.
Spiritual formation. This movement often abandons the truth and warnings of God's Word and promotes mystical methods by which to enter an altered state of consciousness that is the opposite of communion with Jesus Christ through faith and His Word. One of its main methods is contemplative prayer, which has origins in spiritualism and the occult.
Spiritualism. The belief that the dead live on as spirits that can communicate with the living. As a U.S. social movement, this began in the 1800s. In the New Age movement today, as our book shows, people sometimes believe that the spirits come from other universes. These are demons masquerading as spirits. Spiritism: Contact with spirits.
Transpersonal. Going beyond personal life or consciousness.
Visualization/guided imagery. The normal use of visualization is to form mental images. However, occult practitioners in both the East and the West have long used it to deliberately attempt to create or manipulate physical, psychological, or spiritual dimensions. Guided imagery involves using directed fantasy to achieve a goal, such as enhanced creativity, making money, or meeting "spirit guides." Notice how highly the Arcane Institute prizes this method. Check out our booklet: “Visualization, Imagination, & the Christian” at logosword.com.
White Brotherhood. “The Great White Brotherhood, also known as Great Brotherhood of Light or the Spiritual Hierarchy of Earth, is perceived as a spiritual organization composed of those Ascended Masters who have risen from the Earth into immortality, but still maintain an active watch over the world.” (Wikipedia) This is the evil doctrine we learned in the New Age Movement. These so-called “ascended masters” are nothing but demons cloaking themselves as light.
And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness. Their end will be what their actions deserve. (2 Cor. 11:13–15)
Witchcraft/Wicca. Essentially a fertility nature religion, it includes many approaches: nature worship, spells, Satan worship, and occult practices of all types. Some believe there are two types of witchcraft: black, which is evil, and white, which is good, but both are demonic in origin because they come from one source: Satan the deceiver. Sometimes Christians think “white” witchcraft is all right, but it never is right with God.
But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ. (2 Cor. 11:3)
Worldview. One's overall approach to or philosophy of life based on assumptions made about reality, either stated or unstated.