Monism: Defined as the view that reality is a unified whole and that all existing things can be ascribed to, or described by, a single concept or system. It is the doctrine that mind and matter are reducible to the same ultimate substance or principle of being.
Pantheistic Monism: Identifies God with the universe and all that is in it. It is handily summarized by the line: "All is One, One is All, All is God.
Monism and Pantheistic Monism both have historical roots in the religious and worldviews of the East.
Are these the same or different than Monotheism?
Monotheism, by contrast, is the doctrine that there is only one God, and that He is personal and separate from His creation. Monotheism has its roots in the faith systems of the West.
Have the monistic thoughtforms of the East come West undercover?
You be the judge.
Hinduism (Advaita Vedanta upholds the concept of one infinite, undifferentiated, impersonal, divine essence of bliss and consciousness (satchitananda) called Brahman, which is said to be the only reality. All else is illusion, the dream of Brahman, including the entire material world, e.g., trees, flowers, stars, and even people. Brahman cannot be rationally defined (neti netic = not this, not that).
Brahman, then, is unthinking, unknowing, and unknowable.
Taoism is an Eastern system of religious thought. B. Pierce comments on A Synthesis of Taoist Philosophy: "Tao is the essence of the universe and could be viewed as 'God'."
Lifespring (identified as the human potential movement) is a New Age training seminar taken by over 300,000 individuals, founded by John P. Hanley in 1974, and based on the monistic philosophy that all is one. According to Lifespring, "The Absolute within transcends all dualities, including good and evil."
Swami Adbhutananda makes this observation: "Good and evil have no absolute reality."
Silva Mind Control (SMC) is a spiritualistic self-help seminar founded by Jos Silva in Laredo, Texas in 1944. Today, it has grown to be a large international corporate structure. Note the following excerpt from the SMC newsletter:
Conversations with God, a best-selling New Age book series authored by Neale Donald Walsch, quotes 'God':
A Course in Miracles, a very popular text and New Age spiritual tome contemplated thus far by over 1,000 study groups in America, teaches that "separation is a dream from which we need to awaken… joining with each other and undoing the separation which gave rise to the dream."
Irwin Kula, a Conservative Jewish rabbi, as quoted from an appearance on Frontline (a production of WGBH Boston, Faith and Doubt at Ground Zero, aired on public television September 3, 2002):
Deepak Chopra is the author of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success, reviewed here by Doug Groothuis:
Charles Manson: "If God is One, what is bad?"
Dr. John Weldon:
What does the Bible say?
Compiled by: Daryl E. Witmer of AIIA Institute. Primary source: Dr. John Weldon and John Ankerberg, Encyclopedia of New Age Beliefs (Harvest House, 1996).
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