Visualization, The New Age and Christianity

"Occultism has always involved
three techniques for changing and creating reality:
thinking, speaking, and visualizing."

(Dave Hunt - Occult Invasion)
* * * *

"...imaging and visualization are increasingly appearing as Christian meditation, "mind-stretchers," or a consciousness-awakening experience in Christian workshops, and you'd better believe that visualization as a cultivated exercise comes with all sorts of metaphysical and spiritual baggage in tow."
Visualization and Imaging, Jon Trott

"It's not difficult to trace the practice of meditative imaging and visualization back to the mystics."— Visualization and Imaging, Jon Trott

For 2 Great Resources on the New Age, read these books:
For Many Shall Come in My Name by Ray Yungen
Out of India by Caryl Matrisciana


by David Cloud
from his book, Contemplative Mysticism

Visualization or imaginative prayer is becoming popular throughout evangelicalism.

Jesuit priest Anthony de Mello calls it "fantasy prayer" and says that many of the Catholic saints practiced it (Sadhana: A Way to God, pp. 79, 82, 93). Francis of Assisi imagined taking Jesus down from the cross; Anthony of Padua imagined holding the baby Jesus in his arms and talking with him; Teresa of Avila imagined herself with Jesus in His agony in the garden.

This type of thing is an integral part of the spiritual exercises of Ignatius of Loyola. The practitioner is instructed to walk into biblical and extra-biblical historical scenes through the imagination and bring the scene to life by applying all five senses, seeing the events, hearing what people are saying, smelling things, and touching things--all within the realm of pure imagination. He is even to put himself into the scene, talking to the people and serving them. Ignatius encourages practitioners, for example, to imagine themselves present at Jesus' birth and crucifixion.

Consider some excerpts from Ignatius' Spiritual Exercises:

"Imagine Christ our Lord present before you upon the cross, and begin to speak with him ..." (First Week, 53).

"Here it will be to see in imagination the length, breadth, and depth of hell. ... to see in imagination the vast fires, and the souls enclosed ... to hear the wailing ... with the sense of smell to perceive the smoke ... to taste the bitterness ... to touch the flames" (First Week, fifth exercise, 65-70).

"I will see and consider the Three Divine Persons, seated on the royal dais or throne of the Divine Majesty ... I will see our Lady and the angel saluting her. ... [I will see] our Lady, St. Joseph, the maid, and the Child Jesus after His birth. I will make myself a poor little unworthy slave, and as though present, look upon them, contemplate them, and serve them..." (Second Week, 106, 114).

"While one is eating, let him imagine he sees Christ our Lord and His disciples at table, and consider how He eats and drinks, how He looks, how He speaks, and then strive to imitate Him" (Third Week, 214).

Thomas Merton gave an example of this in his book Spiritual Direction and Meditation. He said the individual can use this technique to communicate with the infant Jesus in His nativity. Click here to read this entire article.

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