I am reading a book by Ravi Zacharias right now called Why Jesus. It is a stunning read of his own journey. Growing up in India around those who embraced eastern spirituality, then moving to the west to see us marry capitalism and spirituality by marketing eastern spirituality to make money, then to return home and see the eastern spirituality of his homeland failing people leaving them lacking and searching for truth still. I recommend this book to any person who has ever sought truth, or seeking truth now. He makes a stunning comparison on page 112 about our situation in the West at the moment:
I remember as a new Christian walking into a church in Canada and listening to a hymn I had never heard before, a hymn entitled, “Himself.”
Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord
Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word
Once His gifts I wanted, Now the Giver own
Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone.
The hymn was written by the well-known churchman and theologian Albert B. Simpson (1843-1919). The first time I heard it I thought to myself, “How profound! How God-centered and how refreshing that the spiritual journey is to move one from focusing on the benefits of belief to the great romance and beauty of knowing the Author and Giver of life!” Heaven, if it means anything, will mean being in the presence of the Ultimate Being, not being the ultimate.
Today’s spirituality actually would reverse the thought to:
Once it was the Lord, Now it is the blessing
Once it was His Word, Now is it the feeling
Once it was the Giver, Now the gifts I own
Once I sought Himself, Now it is the healing and my “self” alone.
Don’t you find it interesting that is these same eastern spiritual thoughts Ravi grew up with that are now leaving his people lacking in their search for truth? Funny how the west is now mass marketing these things to us to make a profit. This can’t end well.