Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Star Wars Awakens

Part 1 Star Wars Awakens

And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein."
Isaiah 35:8
Exhibit: The Force Awakens poster[2]

A Jedi's strength flows from the Force... Use the Force…

For my ally is the Force. And a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us and binds us… You must feel the Force around you. Here, between tree... the rock...everywhere!

Concentrate... feel the Force flow. Through the Force, things you will see. Other places. The future... the past. Old friends long gone….[1]
~ Grandmaster Yoda to Jedi apprentice Luke Skywalker
- Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back

By Gaylene Goodroad

The recent phenomenal success of Disney’s record-breaking blockbuster, The Force Awakens,[3] coupled with several other popular sci-fi sagas within the Star Wars franchise for nearly four decades (with future sequels in the works), has cemented the core belief of the film’s mystical life Force into the cultural consciousness for generations to come. But few realize that the same wraithlike energy wielded by Star Wars characters like Obi Wan Kenobi, Yoda, Luke Skywalker, Darth Vader, Kylo Ren, and Rey, is also promoted, practiced, and marketed through martial artists of all stripes—even under a Christian label.

Viewers, along with young Skywalker (Mark Hamill), first learn about the mysterious Force under the tutelage of a shabby, weathered man in a monk-like robe named Ben (Obi Wan) Kenobi (Sir Alec Guinness), whom Luke finds hidden in a rock canyon on the planet of Tatooine (Star Wars – A New Hope):

The Force is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us. It binds the galaxy together… the Force can have a strong influence on the weak-minded. You will find it a powerful ally….”[4]

Skywalker’s Jedi training in the Force would later be honed in the murky swamps of Dagobah under the careful instruction of a 900-year-old green alien named Yoda (Frank Oz), who had also trained a much younger Kenobi (Star Wars – The Empire Strikes Back).[5]
Exhibit: Star Wars - A New Hope poster[6]

Like young Skywalker, I too would learn about this same mysterious Force through my own real-life training in the martial arts. As a young girl, I became mesmerized by personal martial arts demonstrations and stories of hand-to-hand combat by my uncle who introduced me to the combat arts. He had earned his black belt in karate while stationed in Japan during the Korean War. My own martial arts journey would begin with Tae Kwon Do, and culminate with a brown belt in Okinawa Kenpo, and two second-degree black belts (nidan) in Shotokan and Aikido, respectively as I was moved through the various colored belt (obi) levels with a resolute and persevering dedication. I even became a karate sensei (teacher)—training several more karatekasthe way of the empty hand” (i.e., karate-do).[7] My master instructor (shihan) at the time, as well as my fellow instructors affectionately called me “Sensei Ette”, as I was the only female karate instructor in the dojo at that time. A few of the other black belts I worked with were also members of law enforcement. They often performed self-defense demonstrations at local schools, which I also participated in from time to time.
Exhibit: Author as a Shotokan Sensei

But the most intense period of my karate training took place in Hawaii,[8] while my husband was stationed there in the Army. My sensei had been a marine in Okinawa where he trained under the renowned grandmaster, Seikichi Odo, in the hard style of Okinawa Kenpo.[9] Sensei Odo visited the islands frequently to maintain style standards within our dojo. This afforded me the opportunity to train with him, one-on-one, during his frequent official visits. Partly under his direction, I became proficient in fighting with the bo staff—the martial arts weapon that Sensei Odo made famous. Odo was one of the first karate masters to incorporate weapons (kobudo) with empty-hand karate. Kobudo means literally, “the way of weapons” (combat).

Every training session (including karate competition) began with seated meditation (zazen), followed by basic drills of kicking, punching, striking, sparring (kumite), and katas—detailed floor patterns that put all of the techniques together in a moving meditation that required controlled breathing (ki/chi kung or qi gong) and ki extension (kime). The occult nature of these practices as well as its connection to the Star Wars Force, will be further developed in Part 3 of this article series.
Exhibit: Sensei Odo in Hawaii with Author (on right)

After returning to the mainland United States in the late 1980s, I was given the rare opportunity to briefly train—as a black belt—with another world renowned martial arts master, Hidetaka Nishiyama.[11] This was especially important to me at the time, because Sensei Nishiyama was one of the last surviving students of Gichin Funakoshi, the father of modern-day karate (Shotokan). I discovered that Chuck Norris also trained with Nishiyama when the famous martial arts instructor was much younger.[12]

Neither Odo or Nishiyama spoke English fluently, so the training was difficult and rigorous. I remember my initial astonishment at Sensei Odo’s dense, weathered, and rigid bare feet—fleshy tools that bore the abuse of lifelong karate training. I wondered how he was able to wear shoes. He was a pleasant man, but very focused and intense in practice sessions. He would hit, grab, or make disapproving sounds necessary to bring my technique into bounds. Above all else, I dreaded making gaffes with my bo, because I didn’t want to experience his bo strike to the back of my leg.

Sensei Nishiyama was also an imposing figure for a man of small stature. He made unpleasant guttural noises whenever my performance failed his stringent standards. He would swiftly strike improperly placed limbs with his rugged hands; self-developed weapons that felt like cement slabs vigorously flung against the intended target with aimed precision. I had the bruises to prove it. This method was quite effective as it generally brought about a quick correction. Looking back to that period of time, I am struck with sorrow as I recall how noxiously driven and self-focused I was back then. Karate-Do was my life—my “way of life”. Most of my martial arts instructors are gone now, and am grieved to consider the strong possibility that they never knew the Lord Jesus Christ.
Exhibit: Grandmaster Hidetaka Nishyama with Author

In the early 1990s, not long after my Christian conversion, I also left the Roman Catholic Church. It was during this period of time, that I began to read the Bible for the first time in my life. I didn’t understand everything I read, but enough to give me niggling doubts about my chosen profession. From my newfound understanding of the New Testament, I couldn’t reconcile some of the hard-style karate training I was doing (and teaching). The physical brutality associated with the combat arts seriously contradicted with what the Lord Jesus taught: “Love your enemies,” “do good to them”, “bless them”, and “pray for them” (Lk. 6:35; Matt. 5:44). I couldn’t find any loopholes to support my martial arts lifestyle, not even the self-defense argument.

I also became conflicted about spending so much time away from my family and friends to pursue a lifestyle based solely upon self-cultivation. The martial arts system is a combat scheme centered directly on self. Self-awareness, self-confidence, self-control, self-empowerment, self-actualization… self-defense. The karateka climbs up through the belt-ranking system on his/her own merits. Becoming proficient in karate is not a team effort; the pit is dug with one’s own bare hands. Later on, it appalled me to realize that instead of relying upon the Holy Spirit of the Living God to enable me, I was actually depending upon the impersonal Ki-Force—the Star Wars mystical energy force that supposedly connects everything in the universe together—and empowers martial artists to do amazing exploits. I began to see that these things clashed dramatically with my faith in Christ.

Then one day I read John 14:6, “Jesus said to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” In an instant, I knew I’d been on the wrong path—the broad way—leading away from Christ, for karate-do literally means, the way of the empty hand”. The “do” suffix denotes the Tao (Ying/Yang), which is an Eastern religion opposed to true Christianity. It was clear that the two belief systems were not compatible and could not be syncretized without rendering the Bible false. I had been going the wrong “way”.

I resigned my senseiship (which was also a lucrative vocation) and renounced both of my black belts, which also meant severing ties with karate contemporaries and connections. Not one of them could grasp my radical decision to halt my training and teaching. Many times I pleaded with the Lord to help me forget what I’d learned in over 13 years of extreme martial arts training. But, I couldn’t warn others about these things if I’d forgotten everything. It was my heaviness of heart about teaching Eastern mysticism to so many others that led me to write the first edition of my e-booklet exposing the ‘Christian’ martial arts, “My Life in ‘the Way,’: From the Broad Way of the East to the Narrow Way in Christ” in 2009. Here is how I began that writing:

In 1992, I renounced both of my black belts, after discovering the sobering truth about my chosen vocation in light of my Christian faith. For the years since, I have grieved over the fact that I was a teacher of “the Way” to many dear souls—including children. Although I can never undo that grievous error, my prayer is that some may heed what I have written here.[13] [bold added] 

My prayer is the same for this article series exposing the Mystic Force.

The Force, as I was to discover, was not a figment of George Lucas’ fertile imagination, but a concept derived from the Eastern religions of Buddhism, Hinduism, & Taoism, as well as Shintoism and Confucianism. This universal force or energy is referred to as ki in the Japanese and Okinawan styles that I learned and taught, but also called chi (qi) in Chinese, or prana in Indian styles, including yoga—which actually birthed the martial arts—by a 6th century warrior-monk from India who taught yogic disciplines to the Buddhist monks in China.[14]

According to notes I kept from my black belt exam, Bodhidharma (or Daruma) “meditated with his face to a wall for nine years while listening to the ants scream.” I learned that yogic postures were necessary to help the monks endure lengthy meditation sessions, even though most wouldn’t last for “nine years”. The early forms of Daruma’s system of breathing and exercises came to be known as Kung Fu.[15]
Exhibit: The Martial Arts born from Indian/Chinese Yoga[16]

Harvard-trained professor of religious studies at Indiana University, Candy Gunther Brown,[17] documents these facts surrounding the Force, its connection to pantheism (monism), and its astonishing adoption by conservative Christians within the mainstream healthcare market via complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), which includes the martial arts[18]:

The recent integration of CAM into the mainstream healthcare market and conservative Christian subculture is an extraordinary development.… Holism, as the term is often used today, presupposes that all reality is essentially one (monism), and matter and energy, physical and nonphysical entities, exist in a continuum and constantly affect each other. Holisitic ideas permeate American culture.… 

A central assumption unifying diverse CAM practices is the existence—and possibility of redirecting—universal life force or vital energy. This “energy” is variously termed qi (pronounced “chee”), ki, prana, animal magnetism, vital force, biofields, or Innate Intelligence, concepts that may sound familiar to those introduced to “the Force” by Star Wars.[19][bold added] 

These Eastern religious concepts invaded the American culture through mega motion pictures like Star Wars, as well as a flood of other martial arts films and television programs during the 1970s and beyond. Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Chuck Norris have become cultural icons. As Gunther Brown highlights in her book, these movies have also “disseminated mystical ideas of the ‘Force’ as ‘an energy field created by all living things’ that ‘binds the galaxy together’—direct quotes from Yoda and Kenobi explaining the Force to their young apprentice:

Fitness centers portray martial arts as a distinctive brand of self-defense, exercise, or sport—one surrounded by the mystique of cultivating extraordinary physical and spiritual power. During the 1970s and 1980s, English-dubbed Hong Kong and Hollywood films introduced Americans to kung fu and ninjas, generating curiosity and fascination. Hong Kong actors Bruce Lee and Jackie Chans and European-American Chuck Norris (an Air Force veteran who learned martial arts in Korea and an outspoken Christian) became cultural icons. Martial arts found a niche among youth and children through films such as The Karate Kid (1984), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987), and Pokémon (1990s), alongside related comic books, video games, action figures, trading cards, and cereal-box advertisements. More indirectly, the Star Wars series (1977-2005) disseminated mystical ideas of the “Force” as “an energy field created by all living things” that “binds the galaxy together”; one of the greatest Jedi warriors is named “Qui-Gon Jinn,” which sounds very much like “qigong”. Martial arts have become as American as baseball.[20][bold added] 

Not only have the martial arts become “as American as baseball”, but sadly, they have also found friendship within Christianity through savvy Christian media proselytizing. Martial arts legend and actor Chuck Norris, whom Gunther Brown described as “an outspoken Christian”, has almost single-handedly attempted to sanction, sanitize, and sanctify these Eastern religious concepts for Christian consumption. But while loudly professing a Christian faith, he has instead practiced and promoted a Buddhist spirituality.
Exhibit: Star Wars - The Empire Strikes Back poster[21]
In Norris’ 1996 national bestselling book, The Secret Power Within: Zen Solutions to Real Problems, written almost forty years after his Christian conversion, he writes:

Ki: The Universal Power….

This source of inner power, called ki, is an invisible life force that flows throughout the universe and that, given the proper training and practice, is available to everyone on demand…. The fact is that everyone has ki, which is really little more than a technique of visualization allowing one to utilize the internal energy that we all have and letting it flow through the body… martial artists learn how to harness their ki….[22][bold added] 

These are the words of a Jedi master, not a faithful Christian. The Bible mentions nothing of ki—“the universal life force that flows through the universe”—nor that anyone “must learn to harness their ki”. Norris’ teaching on the Ki Force is the identical teaching emanating from the lips of Obi Wan Kenobi, Yoda, and other Jedis who’ve mastered the art of manipulating the Force, just like other real-life swamis, yogis, wizards, and other Eastern religious gurus down through the centuries. Note that Norris also admits to using the occult visualization techniques of Napoleon Hill, and other New Thought gurus, in winning his many championship karate matches spanning several decades:

Thanks to my mental-image drills I had a sense of confidence when my bout with Joe commenced. I didn’t stand in the ring worrying about what he was going to do or what was going to happen. I had visualized almost every possibility, and I was prepared as well as determined to win…my mental imaging had prepared me for every eventuality, and I defeated Joe by one point. It was around this time that I began reading books such as Napoleon Hill’s Laws of Success and Dr. Joseph Murphy’s The Power of Your Subconscious Mind. I discovered that I had intuitively been doing what these authors suggested—using visualization and my subconscious mind to help me achieve my goals.[23][bold added] 
Exhibit: Norris’ The Secret Power Within – “Ki”

In his Christian autobiography, Against All Odds, Norris also divulges that he was able to pass his black belt exam in Korea, while still in the Air Force, by utilizing such occult visualization techniques. In an early 2005 post, Herescope excerpted the definition of “visualization” from The Seekers Handbook: The Complete Guide to Spiritual Pathfinding by John Lash (Harmony Books, 1990), an occult dictionary:

VISUALIZATION A loose term for numerous practices in which mental pictures are called up and used for different purposes: to contact someone telepathically, heal from a distance, achieve a desired state (happiness, peace, courage), attain a desired goal or possession (fame, money, sexual charm). Encompasses many popular practices now in use, though the discipline itself is very ancient and seems to have been developed in almost every culture of the past. May be divided into two classes: CREATIVE VISUALIZATION for the purpose of producing external effects and the use of visual imagery for inner exploration of the processes of the unconscious, as in the Jungian work.[25][bold added] 

Occult visualization is also connected to the “Law of Attraction” (New Thought) which was spawned by New Age mysticism. This concept was discussed in a lengthy article on Quantum Spirituality in 2013, titled: “Metaphysical Mysticism Masquerading as Science - The Rise of End-Time Occultism Part 6”:

The “Law of Attraction,” a Theosophical concoction (also called New Thought), postulates that humans can control reality with thoughts of the mind. It is based on the idea that everything in the universe (including thoughts) is an expression of “vibrational energy everywhere.” This is part and parcel of the “non-locality” principle of New Age metaphysics which states that everything—including human thought—is interconnected in cosmic oneness; i.e., “as above, so below.” This sort of “oneness” is the goal of esoteric evolution, and teaches that we will all evolve to become part of a cosmic whole.[26][bold added] 

In this metaphysical worldview, not only is the impersonal Ki Force connected to everything in the quantum universe in cosmic oneness, but so are human thoughts that can be manipulated to affect or change reality too. The practice of using one’s mind (thoughts) to “attain a desired goal or possession,” i.e., winning a karate match, is actually a form of witchcraft that the Bible condemns (Deut. 18:10; Lev. 19:26; Rev. 19:26).

In his 2009 book, Unshackled: Breaking Away from Seductive Spirituality, Pastor Larry DeBruyn warns about these seductively false teachings. In the chapter titled, “From Cosmos, To Chaos, To Consciousness: Quantum Physics and the New Spirituality,” he succinctly sums up the issue; “New Spirituality is taking the quantum leap from physics to metaphysics, from what is below to what is above.”[27][bold added] 

In an article titled “Bewitched! ‘Evil Eye Over Evangelicalism’”, Pastor Larry DeBruyn has examined in careful detail the occult nature of the New Thought (mind over matter) philosophy that has infiltrated the Church:

New Thought—the Mind of the Devil 

The appeal of New Thought lies, I believe, in the hidden power of it over the mind. So in the Old Testament, the children of Israel were to have nothing to do with occult (occult means hidden) powers, knowledge or sources, with what God called an abomination (Deuteronomy 18:9-12). In the early church revival at Ephesus, many believers “which used curious arts brought their books together, and burned them before all men: and they counted the price of them, and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver” (Acts 19:19, KJV). The result was that the Word of God grew mightily and prevailed (Acts 19:20). Yet contrary to God’s prohibition, and the early church’s example, here we have a network of contemporary influential Protestant and evangelical ministers and ministries whose themes of preaching are indebted to an occult belief system rooted in New Thought, and whose books and recorded sermons, had they been extant in the apostolic era church, would have been burned! 

New Thought is a worldly-wise philosophy of life masquerading itself as Christian. Harmonialism is spiritual pretension, “a form of godliness” that denies “the power thereof” (2 Timothy 3:5, KJV; Read 3:1-9.). After all, who needs Providence if we’ve got principles? Thus, the apostle instructs believers “turn away” from messengers who teach this worldly, narcissistic and self-indulgent philosophy of life. Such earth-bound thinking easily blinds “the minds [Greek, noēma] of the unbelieving” from the “the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:3-4).[28][bold added] 

Norris has compounded his promotion of the martial arts Ki-Force with occult visualization techniques, a belief and practice that is thoroughly compatible within the New Age and Eastern religions, but not true Christianity.

Norris has also failed miserably to distinguish the Ki Force from the Holy Spirit of the living God—the third person of the Trinity—who is the Comforter, Teacher, and divine Enabler to Christian believers (Jn. 14:26; 1 Jn. 2:27; 1 Cor. 2:4).[29] The Holy Spirit is not an impersonal energy Force that is controlled and manipulated at will. Tonie Gatlin, Christian and former martial arts expert, has rightly written, “this attempt to manipulate a supposedly impersonal universal energy is the basis of all sorcery and witchcraft.”

Whether called ‘serpent power,’ ‘Kundalini’, or the ‘Ki’ (or ‘Chi’) force, the idea of an impersonal ‘universal energy’ is widespread in Eastern cultures and inherent to the philosophy behind the martial arts. It is intrinsically tied in with the symbol of the serpent dragon, for the writhing serpent represents the undulating energy of the supposed ‘universal force.’ 

Yogis focus on releasing this power through what they believe are spiritual centers in the body. Religious Taoism teaches that the Ki force can be manipulated by human beings….

In fact, this attempt to manipulate a supposedly impersonal universal energy is the basis of all sorcery and witchcraft.…[30][bold added] 

Gatlin adds another ominous dimension to the Ki Force definition: serpent power or kundalini. In the Hindu religion, the Ki Force (prana) is depicted as a slumbering serpent at the base of the spine that is awakened during Eastern meditation, enabling it to writhe up through the various energy channels of the body (chakras) to bring about spiritual Enlightenment. It is attaining an altered state of consciousness gained through intense breathing exercises (meditation) that enables a martial arts practitioner to activate, harness, and extend their ki (the Force). We have exposed the occult practice of Eastern meditation elsewhere.[31]

It is not surprising that Norris also writes about the need for martial artists to engage in Eastern meditation—via concentrated breathing exercises—in order to be able to harness and control the Ki Force. He’s devoted a chapter in his book, The Secret Power Within, to mediation titled: “My Way of Meditating.”[32]

Those familiar with the Word of God will also recognize that the serpent (dragon) represents Satan or the devil (Rev. 12:9; 20:2). Along with the Yin and Yang (The Tao) symbol, it is common to find a dragon (serpent) emblazoned on martial arts uniforms, patches, and karate school logos—and more.
Exhibit: Bruce Lee film (w/Chuck Norris) –
Way of the Dragon
& fiery Tao (yin/yang) graphic
This demonic nature of the Star Wars Force is played out through many unsettlingly familiar escape techniques used by a wide cast of characters (from both dark and light sides of the Force) who find themselves in various galactic predicaments. They unanimously engage in a litany of dark practices forbidden by the Bible, including telekinesis, levitation, hypnosis, mind-control, telepathy, clairvoyance, and even necromancy (Lev. 19:31; 20:6, 27; Deut. 18: 11, 14; Is. 2:6; 8:19):

A number of other paranormal, psionic Force powers are demonstrated in the film series, including telekinesis, levitation, hypnosis, and mind control, as well as extra sensory perception based abilities such as telepathy, clairvoyance, and enhanced empathy. Darth Vader telekinetically chokes Admiral Motti using the Force in A New Hope, an ability he is able perform in The Empire Strikes Back by viewing his distant subject though a video screen. 

Jedi and Sith can also telekinetically summon their lightsabers into their hands from across a room. They are also able to influence and control the minds of others by making use of the "Jedi mind trick", or using the Force to implant suggestions with which the subject is compelled to comply. Obi-Wan uses this ability in A New Hope to convince a stormtrooper that "These aren't the droids you're looking for."] This same trick is used by neophyte Rey in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015) to compel a stormtrooper to release her from her retraints,[sic] permit her to escape her cell, and leave his weapon behind for her. In that film, First Order commander Kylo Ren uses the Force to restrain others in a paralyzing telekinetic hold, suppress and influence their motor skills, levitate them in the air or render them unconscious. He uses telekinetic force to interrogate and torture Poe Dameron and Rey by invading their thoughts, emotions and memories in a manner that causes discomfort and pain. He is also able to suspend, in mid-air, a blaster bolt fired at him.

In the Star Wars Legends works, which take place in an alternate continuity, the Force can be used to manipulate and erase thoughts and memories, turn victims to the Dark Side, destroy the mind completely, give the victim hallucinations, cause a victim pain and torment, heal or drain the life force of others, increase resistance to attack, and warp space.[34][bold added] 

These satanic devices are especially obvious in the dueling lightsaber scenes between Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and Rey (The Force Awakens). Ren’s imposing fiery-red lightsaber looks suspiciously like an inverted cross.
Exhibit: Kylo Ren’s fiery red lightsaber – The Force Awakens[35]

Professing Christians who equate the so-called Ki Force or Serpent Power (kundalini) with the Holy Spirit of God commit the sin of blasphemy—for the Star Wars Force is derived from occult mysticism and Eastern religion, and is not even remotely related to true Christianity. It all comes from the Dark Side.

To date, Chuck Norris, who has become a conservative Christian political pundit, has not publicly recanted any of his Eastern mystical teachings in one of his current writings or multimedia projects. To the contrary, he has devoted his legacy, time, and funding to promoting the martial arts to children within the American public school system through his Kickstart Kids organization.[36] Rather than face scrutiny for his continued promotion of the martial arts, Norris has actually been recognized for his martial arts achievements within Christianity. Norris, the “legendary martial arts champion and media superstar” was honored with the prestigious NRB Chairman’s Award at the 2014 National Religious Broadcasters (NRB) convention. He was joined on stage by WND publisher, Joseph Farah:

In a rare public appearance, legendary martial arts champion and media superstar Chuck Norris will face off on stage with WND founder Joseph Farah in the climactic event of the 15th annual National Religious Broadcasters convention Thursday, Feb. 26, in Nashville at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel.[37][bold added] 
Exhibit: WND publisher Joseph Farah and friend Chuck Norris[38]
Norris, a weekly columnist for WND, was also the subject of an exclusive feature article on the online website prior to receiving his NRB award titled, “No joke! Chuck Norris mano a mano [i.e., “hand-to-hand combat”] with Farah - Superstar faces grilling on stage at Christian media convention.” Note the basis of Norris’ special recognition:

Norris first made his mark as a renowned teacher of martial arts and was a six-time undefeated World Professional Middle Weight Karate Champion. He is the first man from the Western Hemisphere in the 4,500+ year tradition of Tae Kwon Do to be awarded an eighth degree Black Belt Grand Master ranking. He has also starred in 24 motion pictures. Furthermore, his television series, “Walker, Texas Ranger,” ran for 8 1/2 years and was the most successful Saturday night series on CBS since “Gunsmoke.”[39][bold added]

While making “his mark as a renowned teacher of martial arts” as well as his success as a famous motion picture actor matters to the world, it scores no points in the Lord’s economy—and should not be honored in the Church.

“For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in His presence. But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.”
(1 Cor. 1:26-31)

Stay tuned for Part 2 of this article series. . . . 

1. THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK online script written by Lawrence Kasdan and Leigh Brackett (from a story by George Lucas); see:
2. See:;
3. Chris Agar, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens Crosses $2 Billion At Box Office,” Feb. 7, 2016,; see:
4. Online script of STAR WARS (Episode IV) A NEW HOPE, from the JOURNAL OF THE WHILLS by George Lucas (Revised Fourth draft), January 15, 1976 LUCASFILM LTD; see:
5. Ibid. The Empire Strikes Back script. 
6. See:, Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977);
7. Gaylene Goodroad, My Life in ‘the Way’: From the Broad Way of the East to the Narrow Way in Christ, 2009 e-booklet, (revised and expanded 2014), pp. 43-53; see:
8. Note: In 1987, as a second-degree brown belt, I was named the Hawaiian Okinawa Kenpo Karate-Do (HOKK) student of the year. 
9. Note: Hawaiian Okinawa Kenpo master Paul Ortino Jr., now an 8th Dan, was a student of Seikichi Odo. He has written a short bio of Odo. Joseph Bunch, the other student of Odo’s mentioned in the article, was my sensei. He is now deceased. See:
10. Ibid. Goodroad, My Life in “the Way”, pp. 18-19. 
11. See Nishiyama’s official website:
12. Chuck Norris, The Secret Power Within, Broadway Books, NY, 1996, pp. 127-130; and Chuck Norris and Ken Abram, Against All Odds: My Story, Broadman and Holman Publishing, Nashville, TN, 2004, 2006, pg. 55. See also, Ibid. Goodroad, “My Life in ‘the Way’”, pg. 117. 
13. Ibid. Goodroad, My Life in ‘the Way’, pg. 2. 
14. Terry Mulberry, “So, What’s the Problem with Yoga?”, Discernment-Ministries Newsletter, May/June 2013, Vol. 24, No. 3; see: See also, Ibid. Goodroad, “My Life in ‘the Way’”, pp. 6-7, 19. 
15. Ibid. Goodroad, My Life in “the Way”, pg. 7. 
16. Ibid. Goodroad, My Life in “the Way”, pp. 6-7. 
17. Indiana University (IU) website; see:
18. “The ‘Woo’ Factor: Rick Warren’s Healthcare Reform Model,” Herescope, Mar. 24, 2011; see: 
19. Candy Gunther Brown, The Healing Gods: Complementary and Alternative Medicine in Christian America, Oxford University Press, New York, 2013, pp. 3-4. Ibid. 
20. Gunther-Brown, pp. 175-176. 
21. Graphic taken from; see:
22. Ibid. Norris, The Secret Power Within, pp. 127-130. See also, Ibid. Goodroad, “My Life in ‘the Way’”, pp. 43-54. 
23. Chuck Norris (secular autobiography), The Secret of Inner Strength: My Story, Charter Books, New York, 1988-89, pg. 84. 
24. Chuck Norris and Ken Abram, Against All Odds: My Story (Christian autobiography), Broadman and Holman Publishing, Nashville, TN, 2004, 2006, pg. 41. Norris also spends most of Chapter 9 (pp. 58-65), “When Warriors Collide”, discussing these occult visualization techniques. 
25. “Popular neoevangelical terms -- What do they really mean?”, Herescope, Oct. 13, 2005; see:
26. Gaylene Goodroad, “Metaphysical Mysticism Masquerading as Science - The Rise of End-Time Occultism Part 6,” Herescope, Oct. 4, 2013; see:
27. Pastor Lawrence A. DeBruyn, Unshackled: Breaking Away from Seductive Spirituality, Moeller Printing, Indianapolis, IN, 2009, pg. 44. 
28. Pastor Larry DeBruyn, “BEWITCHED! ‘Evil Eye over Evangelicalism’”, Discernment-Ministries Newsletter, March/April 2010, Volume 21, Number 2; see:
29. “Not Prana: The Holy Spirit as Personal Comforter,” Herescope, Jan. 12, 2011; see:
30. The Dark Side of Karate, Linda Nathan and Tonie Gatlin, Bloomington, IN, 2004, pg. 42. 
31. Gaylene Goodroad, “Mainstreaming Mystic Mindedness: Eastern Meditation as the Universal Cure-All,” Herescope, Nov. 23, 2015; see: See also: Sarah Leslie and Pastor Larry DeBruyn, “Altered States: A Different Gate - The sober Christian in a spiritually inebriated age,” Herescope, Apr. 28 2011; see: Below are articles previously published about the Presence—which also deals with the Eastern Meditation that has infiltrated the Church through Contemplative Spirituality and the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR): 
“The PASSION of the PRESENCE - & the Purpose of the Passion Part 1,” Herescope, January 25, 2014; 
Presence” Eschatology - Part 2, Herescope, February 25, 2014; 
Bridal Eschatology Part 3, Herescope, March 08, 2014; 
The Perfectly Obedient Bride Part 4, Herescope, March 26, 2014; 
The 2nd Coming of the “Presence” Part 5, Herescope, April 12, 2014; 
The Battled Bride: Part 6, Herescope, April 22, 2014.  
Pastor Larry DeBruyn published an article on Herescope on December 31, 2013, titled The Present of “His Presence”. The article has now been posted as a downloadable PDF file at the Discernment Ministries website:'s%20Present%20of%20His%20Presence.pdf.  
32. Ibid. Norris, The Secret Power Within, pp. 131-135. 
33. Graphic taken from Walmart website; see:
34. Wikipedia; see:
35. Graphic taken from; see:
36. Ibid. Goodroad, My Life in ‘the Way’. See also: Gaylene Goodroad, “Chuck Norris - HIS BELIEFS, HIS ASSOCIATIONS, HIS MISSION,” Herescope, July 19, 2010; see: See also the KickStartKids website:
37. See: NRB website:
38. Photo taken from WND website; see:
39. “No joke! Chuck Norris mano a mano with Farah - Superstar faces grilling on stage at Christian media convention,” WND website, Nov 30, 2014