I don't really know how to effectively blog on this subject because to give it the fairest listen possible, we'd be listening for HOURS. And I'm personally getting tired of talking about Oprah on this blog. For some reason it keeps happening. Maybe it's because I have more time on my hands these days, and to be honest, I enjoy her show.
Oprah is leading an online class on Eckhart Tolle's novel, A New Earth. I haven't read the book. I've watched about 45 minutes of the first class online at Oprah.com, to see what all the rigmarole is all about. For me it is a tiresome hour and a half, a little man saying what we already know in obscure but lofty language, giving his keys to spiritual awareness and growth, quoting Jesus as an inspired teacher but not much more than that.
Some of it seems like it could be helpful. Some of it seems very dangerous. I wanted to highlight one part, because I think Christian women (and men, but I know most of you men out there could give a rat's buttooee about Oprah) should be informed, and I also have a question. For women and men.
I'll give a summary of this question posed by a Catholic reader/viewer to Oprah, and then Oprah's answer. But you can listen to it here. Just click on Chapter One and then go to about 21 minutes into the video: (Please do go listen if you have the time.)
Kelly: I'm a Catholic. My husband is Catholic and we've decided to raise our children Catholic. Tolle's book, A New Earth, is opening my eyes to a new way of thinking and form of spirituality that doesn't align with the teaching of Christianity. How do you, Oprah, reconcile this spiritual teaching with your Christian beliefs?
Oprah: Because of my experiences at a Baptist Church in my twenties, I have since opened my mind about the absolute indescribable hugeness of that which we call God. In my journey I began to search for something other than doctrine. I believe Jesus came to show us a Christ consciousness...to show us the way it's done...to show us principals and laws to know that way...in my belief, even as a Christian, I don't believe Jesus came to start Christianity. I am a free thinking Christian and believe other paths lead to God than just Christianity.
Again, please listen to her actual response if you can.
First of all, what does that mean..."I don't believe Jesus came to start Christianity"....huh? I'm seriously asking what she might mean by that. Trying to understand where exactly she's coming from here. Christ consciousness. What do you think that means?
Jesus commands us not to judge one another. When Oprah calls herself a Christian, and then describes Christianity in such an unorthodox way, should a Christian warn others that's she's not a Christian, and is in fact, a false teacher? Is that casting judgement? Is she a false teacher? Is she a Christian? Do I have a right to decide whether or not she's a Christian? What is our Christian responsibility here? Where is the line between judgement and discernment?