Bible & CCC on New Age & Occult

Why the New Age Movement is Not Compatible with Catholicism

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By your precepts I get understanding,
therefore I hate every false way.
~ Psalm 119:104


God, our loving Father, has from the beginning warned us of things which lead to spiritual death. The Bible is rife with references to the reality of the spiritual realm, warnings about spiritual warfare, proof of the powers of the fallen angels - the demons. The Catechism of the Catholic Church speaks of these realities, as do many Church documents, and the saints. Below are some of these.


Genesis 3:4-5   But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not die; for God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God....

Exodus 7:10-12   ...Aaron threw down his staff before Pharaoh ... and it became a snake. Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers; and they also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same by their secret arts. Each one threw down his staff, and they became snakes; but Aaron's staff swallowed up theirs....

Exodus 7:20-22   Moses and Aaron did just as the LORD commanded. In the sight of Pharaoh and of his officials he lifted up the staff and struck the water in the river, and all the water in the river was turned into blood .... But the magicians of Egypt did the same by their secret arts; so Pharaoh's heart remained hardened, and he would not listen to them; as the LORD had said.

Exodus 8:6-13   So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt; and the frogs came up and covered the land of Egypt. But the magicians did the same by their secret arts .... Then Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron, and said, "Pray to the LORD to take away the frogs .... Moses said to Pharaoh, "Kindly tell me when I am to pray ... that the frogs may be removed .... And he said, "Tomorrow." Moses said, "As you say! So that you may know that there is no one like the LORD our God, the frogs shall leave .... Then Moses and Aaron went out from Pharaoh; and Moses cried out to the LORD concerning the frogs that he had brought upon Pharaoh. And the LORD did as Moses requested: the frogs died....

Leviticus 19:26   ...You shall not practice augury or witchcraft.

Leviticus 19:31   Do not turn to mediums or wizards; do not seek them out, to be defiled by them....

Leviticus 20:6   If any turn to mediums and wizards, prostituting themselves to them, I will set my face against them, and will cut them off from the people.

Deuteronomy 11:16   Take care, or you will be seduced into turning away, serving other gods and worshiping them

Deuteronomy 13:1-3   If prophets or those who divine by dreams appear among you and promise you omens or portents, and the omens or the portents declared by them take place, and they say, "Let us follow other gods ... and let us serve them," you must not heed the words of those prophets or those who divine by dreams; for the LORD your God is testing you, to know whether you indeed love the LORD your God with all your heart and soul.

Deuteronomy 18:9-14 must not learn to imitate the abhorrent practices of those nations. No one shall be found among you who makes a son or daughter pass through fire, or who practices divination, or is a soothsayer, or an augur, or a sorcerer, or one who casts spells, or who consults ghosts or spirits, or who seeks oracles from the dead. For whoever does these things is abhorrent to the LORD .... You must remain completely loyal to the LORD your God. Although these nations that you are about to dispossess do give heed to soothsayers and diviners, as for you, the LORD your God does not permit you to do so.

Jeremiah 28:8-9   "The prophets who preceded you and me from ancient times prophesied war, famine, and pestilence against many countries and great kingdoms. As for the prophet who prophesies peace, when the word of that prophet comes true, then it will be known that the LORD has truly sent the prophet."

Jeremiah 29:8-9   For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let the prophets and the diviners who are among you deceive you, and do not listen to the dreams that they dream, for it is a lie that they are prophesying to you in my name; I did not send them, says the LORD.

Ezekiel 13:2-23   ...say to those who prophesy out of their own imagination: "Hear the word of the LORD!" Thus says the Lord GOD, Alas for the senseless prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! Your prophets have been like jackals among ruins .... They have envisioned falsehood and lying divination; they say, "Says the LORD," when the LORD has not sent them, and yet they wait for the fulfillment of their word! Have you not seen a false vision or uttered a lying divination, when you have said, "Says the LORD," even though I did not speak?
     Because you have uttered falsehood and envisioned lies, I am against you, says the Lord GOD. My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and utter lying divinations; they shall not be ... enrolled in the register of the house of Israel .... Because ... they have misled my people, saying, "Peace," when there is no peace .... you have encouraged the wicked not to turn from their wicked way and save their lives ....

Matthew 7:15   Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

Matthew 7:22-23   On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many deeds of power in your name?' Then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; go away from me, you evildoers.'

Matthew 24:4-5   Jesus answered them, "Beware that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, 'I am the Messiah!' and they will lead many astray.

Matthew 24:11   And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray.

Matthew 24:23   Then if anyone says to you, 'Look! Here is the Messiah!' or 'There he is!' - do not believe it. For false messiahs and false prophets will appear and produce great signs and omens, to lead astray, if possible, even the elect.

Mark 5:2-18   And when he had stepped out of the boat ... a man ... with an unclean spirit met him. He lived among the tombs; and no one could restrain him ... even with a chain; for he had often been restrained with shackles and chains, but the chains he wrenched apart, and the shackles he broke in pieces; and no one had the strength to subdue him .... [Jesus] had said to him, "Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!" Then Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" He replied, "My name is Legion; for we are many." ... and the unclean spirits begged him, "Send us into the swine; let us enter them." So he gave them permission. And the unclean spirits came out and entered the swine; and the herd, numbering about 2,000, rushed down the steep bank into the sea ....
     As [Jesus] was getting into the boat, the man who had been possessed by demons....

Acts 16:16   ...a slave-girl who had a spirit of divination and brought her owners a great deal of money by fortune-telling

1 Corinthians 10:20   ...what pagans sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God....

1 Corinthians 10:21   You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons. You cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons.

2 Corinthians 11:14-15   ...Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is not strange if his ministers also disguise themselves as ministers of righteousness....

Galatians 1:8   But even if we or an angel from heaven should proclaim to you a gospel contrary to what we proclaimed to you, let that one be accursed! As we have said before, so now I repeat, if anyone proclaims to you a gospel contrary to what you received, let that one be accursed!

Galatians 5:19   Now the works of the flesh are obvious: fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, anger, quarrels, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these .... those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Ephesians 4:14   We must no longer be ... tossed to and fro and blown about by every wind of doctrine, by people's trickery, by their craftiness in deceitful scheming.

Ephesians 6:11-12   Put on the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places

1 Timothy 4:1-2   Now the Spirit expressly says that in later times some will renounce the faith by paying attention to deceitful spirits and teachings of demons, through the hypocrisy of liars whose consciences are seared with a hot iron.

1 Peter 5:8   Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour.

1 John 1:8   If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

1 John 1:10   If we say that we have not sinned, we make him [Jesus, the Christ] a liar, and his word is not in us.

1 John 2:22   Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Messiah...

1 John 4:1   Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world

1 John 4:6   We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us, and whoever is not from God does not listen to us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

2 John 7-11   Many deceivers have gone out into the world .... Be on your guard ....Everyone who does not abide in the teaching of Christ, but goes beyond it, does not have God .... Do not receive into the house or welcome anyone who comes to you and does not bring this teaching, for to welcome is to participate in the evil deeds of such a person.

Revelation 22:14-15   Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they will have the right to the tree of life and may enter the city by the gates. Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and fornicators and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

Revelation 12:17   Then the dragon was angry with the woman, and went off to make war on the rest of her children, those who keep the commandments of God and hold the testimony of Jesus.

We are called the Church Militant because we are engaged in spiritual warfare.


2112   The first commandment condemns polytheism...

2113   Idolatry not only refers to false pagan worship .... Man commits idolatry whenever he honours and revers a creature in place of God, whether this be gods or demons (for example, satanism) .... Many martyrs died for not adoring "the Beast"[4] refusing even to simulate such worship. Idolatry rejects the unique Lordship of God; it is therefore incompatible with communion with God.
     [4] Cf. Revelation 13-14

2114   ....Idolatry is a perversion of man's innate religious sense. An idolater is someone who "transfers his indestructible notion of God to anything other than God."[6]
     [6] Origen, Contra Celsum 2, 40: PG11, 861

Divination and magic
2115   God can reveal the future to his prophets or to other saints. Still, a sound Christian attitude consists in putting oneself confidently into the hands of Providence for whatever concerns the future and giving up all unhealthy curiosity about it....

2116   All forms of divination are to be rejected: recourse to Satan or demons, conjuring up the dead or other practices falsely supposed to "unveil" the future.[7] Consulting horoscopes, astrology, palm reading, interpretation of omens and lots, the phenomena of clairvoyance and recourse to mediums all conceal a desire for power over time, history and, in the last analysis, other human beings, as well as a wish to conciliate hidden powers. They contradict the honour, respect and loving fear that we owe to God alone.
     [7] Cf. Deuteronomy 18:10; Jeremiah 29:8

2117   All practices of magic or sorcery, by which one attempts to tame occult powers, so as to place them at one's service and have a supernatural power over others - even if this were for the sake of restoring their health - are gravely contrary to the virtue of religion. These practices are even more to be condemned when accompanied by the intention of harming someone, or when they have recourse to the intervention of demons. Wearing charms is also reprehensible. Spiritism often implies divination or magical practices; the Church for her part warns the faithful against it. Recourse to so-called traditional cures does not justify either the invocation of evil powers or the exploitation of another's credulity.

2121   Simony is defined as the buying or selling of spiritual things.[5] To Simon the magician, who wanted to buy the spiritual power he saw at work in the apostles, St. Peter responded: "Your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain God's gift with money!"[6] Peter thus held to the words of Jesus: "You received without pay, give without pay."[7] It is impossible to appropriate to oneself spiritual goods and behave toward them as their owner or master, for they have their source in God. One can receive them only from him, without payment.
     [5] Cf. Acts 8:9-24
     [6] Acts 8:20
     [7] Matthew 10:9; cf. already Isaiah 55:1

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