My last blog post included the video link to Nightline’s “Does Satan Exist?” I wanted to describe and discuss the people on their panel, and their views. Apparently the producers wanted to try to make the “sides” equal, so there was a panel of four individuals; two who believed in Satan, two who do not…or at least they don’t in any conventional sense.
The two who don’t believe in Satan: Deepak Chopra, and Carlton Pearson. The two who do think that Satan (and demons) exist: Mark Driscoll and Annie Lobert.
The name most people will recognize out of the four is Deepak Chopra. Chopra didn’t leave any of his new age flare behind for this panel, let me tell you. As always Chopra tries to correlate all things spiritual with our own “consciousness.” Some of the more hilarious moments of this show came in when Chopra basically insists the he is more evolved than the rest of us, and is on a higher plane of consciousness. I have to say that if I could wrap up Chopra’s stance in one word, it would be “prideful.”
How does this color his view on Satan and evil? Well, first he presents a straw man version of what it means to be Christian. For example, he talks of our supposed obsession over sin, guilt, and shame. In fact one of the tenants of Christianity is to be set free from sin, guilt and shame, not to obsess over it. If we are to obsess over anything, it is to be Christ. Chopra degrades any belief in any sort of spiritual being, as an actual being, as “primitive.” So short answer; no, Chopra doesn’t believe in Satan. If we left it there it would have gone a lot quicker.
What really gets me is that Chopra tends to make us his own belief system as he goes, and never offers actual evidence to back up his opinion. He doesn’t really believe in evil, but rather a stifling of creativity. We apparently need this stifling, however, because in Chopra’s made up religion, for any creation to occur, you need “contrast.” Hunh. Then, he went on to say that belief, and beliefs, are a cover up for insecurity. Okay, let’s run with it as one audience member did. So, beliefs are cover ups for insecurity, and Chopra is adamant about his own beliefs…so they too are a cover up for insecurity, with no real bearing on reality. What’s funny is that when an audience member pointed out this blatant logical flaw, Chopra didn’t get it all. It doesn’t inspire much confidence in anything he posits.
So, what then does Chopra do with the idea of evil? Well, you see, it is all generated by our negativity. If we get raped, murdered, mugged, if we step in gum, it’s all because of our own negativity. Our states of consciousness are so un-evolved that we actually cause harm to ourselves. Wonderful. If we could just be more positive and creative in our consciousnesses we could imagine a world without AIDS, Cancer, bad people, hurricanes, etc… and cause that world to come about. Yeah, we should all get right on that.
No surprises here, but the whole time I’m thinking how Satan had to be rather proud of this one. Chopra put forth his own new age views on evil, and as I said, doesn’t believe in Satan. Next installment I’ll take a look at Carlton Pearson’s “words of wisdom” as he makes his case against the reality of Satan.
Edit to add; I was looking over my notes, and another interview with Chopra and I forgot to point out something. When Chopra feels certain verses of scripture (taken out of context and language, I might add) fits his needs when trying to make a point, he’ll quote it all day. However, when other verses are pointed out to him in their proper context, he shoves the scriptures aside as mere made up myth, funny how that works innit? Don’t get me wrong, he’s not the only one who likes to do this, but is indeed one amongst many.