New Age In Public Schools
by Craig Branch
Many parents and Christians are unaware of the steady flood of New Age / occult curriculum in our public schools.
Watchman Fellowship has been attempting to respond effectively to numerous incidents in Alabama and other parts of the country.
The fact is that there is a growing constituency of professional educators who are either personally involved in the New Age Movement or are being influenced by those who are.
Their goal is to transform our educational system by the implementation of eastern mystical presuppositions, techniques, and practices into the curriculum of our schools.
Common terms used to identify these beliefs and practices are "transpersonal education" or "integrative education."
A very helpful source of information is the text book The Aquarian Conspiracy by New Age leader and sociologist Marilyn Ferguson. The book outlines the overall goals, objectives and proponents of the New Age movement.
Concerning education she writes, "Of the Aquarian Conspirators surveyed, more were involved in education than any other single category of work.
"They were teachers, administrators, policymakers, educational psychologists. They are heroes in education trying to transcend the limits of old structure; but their efforts are too often thwarted by peers, administrators, and parents.
"Mario Fantini, former Ford consultant on education, now at State University of New York, said bluntly, `The psychology of becoming has to be smuggled into the schools'" (pp. 280-281).
These "heroes" believe that each child innately possesses all knowledge, wisdom, creativity, power, and perfection within himself, in his "intuitive" or "higher self."
These are eastern mystical religious beliefs and the techniques utilized to achieve or "realize" this potential are identically the same as many eastern practices to achieve "enlightenment."
Ferguson goes on to state, "The deliberate use of consciousness expanding techniques in education, only recently well underway, is new in mass schooling. Altered states of consciousness are taken seriously: `centering' exercises, meditation, relaxation, and fantasy are used to keep the intuitive pathways open and whole brain learning. There are techniques to encourage body awareness: breathing, relaxation, yoga, movement, biofeedback," (The Aquarian Conspiracy, pp. 295, 315).
These curriculums have been introduced through health programs, counselling modules, literature and creative writing courses, stress reduction programs, self-esteem modules and gifted children's programs.
The pattern is basically the same.
The students - kindergarten through college - are introduced to what are called progressive relaxation techniques, which are exactly the same procedures of hypnosis and meditation.
The techniques include alternate muscle tension-relaxing, deep diaphragm breathing, alternate nostril breathing, guided imagery and visualization exercises, autogenics (repeating a mantra or repeating "My body is getting heavier") and maintaining a passive mental state.
In one module we challenged called "Peace, Harmony, and Awareness," part of the A.P.P.L.E. program, the child having been taught how to put himself into this altered state of consciousness, was introduced to a white rabbit in his "secret place," using guided imagery (post-hypnotic suggestion).
The child could then ask the rabbit (spirit guide or higher self) any question and the answer or solution would come.
These approaches in education are appalling. They are illegial, unethical, and are without scientific validity.
The approach is a violation of the establishment clause of the First Amendment.
It is unethical in that the real nature is obscured or hidden behind secular jargon and nomenclature.
If parents realized that their children were being exposed to trance induction techniques (hypnosis, meditation) they would vigorously protest and withdraw their children.
It is up to Christians to be very much involved with their child's education.
Ask your children about what they are doing in school. Ask them about relaxation techniques, centering and visualization exercises.
If there is any hint of involvement, you can contact our office for counsel by writing to the address on the of this Expositor cover or by using the enclosed envelope.
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