Thursday, November 29, 2007

How to use nutrition to elliminate IBS and treat asthma and allergies printable article
Originally published September 25 2007
How to Use Nutrition to Eliminate IBS and Treat Asthma, Allergies
by Marty Karpinski

(NewsTarget) Dr. David Dahlman, D.C., medical director of the Hyde Park Holistic Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, has developed a comprehensive program to eliminate or greatly reduce Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). In a lengthy report available as a free download on his website,, he expands on the negative role that drugs and diet play in gastrointestinal health, how and why IBS develops, how it is at least partially to blame for a host of other symptoms including asthma and food allergies, and what can be done about it all.

After addressing the shortcomings of the allopathic treatment model, Dahlman declares, "IBS is simply a fundamental, functional deficit in 2 areas, bacteria and chemistry, and if not addressed, any other approach is doomed to failure." Each human being has many billions of friendly flora, beneficial bacteria in our gastrointestinal tract that, when kept in proper proportions, allow for a well-functioning digestive system. If the bacterial balance is in any way altered, typically through drugs or poor diet, the chemistry of the GI tract is altered and symptoms develop. These symptoms include pain and discomfort, bloating and abdominal distension, alternating diarrhea and constipation, abnormal bowel frequency or urgency, indigestion, GERD, and gas.

IBS is primarily caused by past or present antibiotic use. Antibiotics are used to kill microorganisms and can be useful for treating acute infections, but due to their nondiscriminatory nature, antibiotics kill all bacteria, including gastrointestinal flora. Dahlman quickly points out that "it doesn’t matter whether you’ve taken 2 or 200 courses in your lifetime. It also doesn’t matter if you took them all before you were 10-years old or throughout your life time. Each time you took them you destroyed a portion of the bacterial population and even though they are living, reproducing organisms, they don’t always reproduce back to proper proportions and in fact, they may reproduce to abnormal levels."

Other reasons why IBS develops in some individuals include NSAID use, complications of which have been linked to ulcers, bleeding and gastric damage, which are themselves a result of a change in GI chemistry. Poor dietary choices, specifically too much daily, fast food, processed food, and alcohol use are to blame for much the same reason. A lack of digestive enzymes ensures that the body is ill-equipped to break down food, resulting in malabsorption. Abnormal bacteria, parasites or yeast can also be factors. Stress, according to Dahlman, does not cause IBS, but can exacerbate symptoms.

In maybe one of the best examples of the holism of the human body, Dahlman explains how diet and drugs can act as a catalyst to a number of other diseases. Diet and drug use alter the level of bacteria in the GI tract, which affect the chemistry and lay the groundwork for IBS symptoms. Often, the intestines become unhealthy and inflamed, which causes them to expand and form microscopic "holes," through which microscopic, undigested matter enters the bloodstream, a phenomenon which is allopathically referred to as "Leaky Gut Syndrome." Once in the bloodstream, these undigested molecules are attacked by an ill-equipped immune system, which creates an antibody to the molecule and generates the production of histamine. Histamine, in turn, causes anything from headaches, pain, and skin rashes, to serious problems like asthma and anaphylactic shock. The reason that anti-histamines offer only short-term relief is that the body continues to produce histamine in response to the food that it can't break down and is therefore allergic to. Due to the body's inability to break down its protein, milk is the most common type of molecule to pass undigested into the bloodstream and provoke an antibody/histamine reaction. This can not only explain how a milk allergy is created, but also milk's role in the onset of allergies and asthma.

To address these issues, Dahlman offers a comprehensive solution that speaks to all of the causes of IBS as well as temporary dietary restrictions to allow the gastrointestinal system to utilize this treatment protocol. Persons looking to eliminate IBS should follow all suggestions, as each has an important role in healing. Two things must be done simultaneously, and both are temporary, with a typical treatment protocol lasting about 90 days.

Dietary restrictions need to be put into place which involve the complete avoidance of all dairy products (eggs and butter are fine, however). No milk, cheese, ice cream, sour cream, creamy salad dressings, yogurt, as well as any ingredients containing the following words in any context: milk (milk solids, milk by-products for example), cheese (cheese flavoring), lactose, whey and casein. These foods need to be avoided because they cause irritation of the gastrointestinal lining, and healing cannot begin until such irritation is stopped. Asthma, allergies to milk and skin problems will also improve once dairy is removed from the diet. And according to Dahlman, the avoidance of all dairy is a "100% rule." He is adamant that anyone attempting to eliminate their IBS symptoms completely eliminate dairy for the duration of treatment. "If you only eliminate dairy by about 85%, you might see no benefit at all." Most legumes (beans) need to be eliminated from the diet as well, the simple reason is that they cause gas, which needs to be minimized during treatment. Depending on the type of legume, they can also be difficult to digest. "Safe" legumes include green beans, peas and lima beans. All other beans, including black, red, refried, navy, kidney and garbanzo are out, as well as Mexican food and certain Indian and Middle eastern dishes and most soy products must also be eliminated.

In addition to restricting the diet, nutritional supplementation is a must when attempting to conquer IBS, and supplements fall into four distinct categories. Probiotics must be taken to restore the bacterial balance in the GI tract. Since the lack of proper numbers of intestinal flora is the root cause of IBS, probiotics are paramount. Next, Dahlman recommends a liquid multivitamin and multimineral drink to heal the GI tract and to help with restoring chemistry. Thirdly, digestive enzymes are needed to help with proper digestion of foods. Lastly Dahlman suggests "a combination of peppermint, lavender and chamomile oils as it is anti-inflammatory, anti-gas and anti-spasmodic."

Dahlman states that a typical treatment protocol for Crohn's Disease or Colitis would be similar in nature to this IBS treatment. He even suggests that Crohn's and Colitis may simply be an advanced form of IBS.

Note: Anyone seeking more information should visit or view the treatment plan directly at Neither the author nor Newstarget are affiliated in any way with Dr. Dahlman or his practice.

How young people are being driven off the farm

How young people are being driven off the farm - News - How young people are being driven off the farm
When the older folks retire, will there be anyone left to till the soil and grow our crops?
September 23, 2007
Catherine Porter
Environment Reporter

When Kurtis Andrews walks into his family's barn, he can't just ask one of the employees where his dad is. He has to ask for "Mr. Andrews." That's because few of the market staff know Kurtis anymore. They think he's another customer.

Andrews spent 20 years working on the farm. When he was seven, he bought a bicycle with the money he'd saved weeding the fields by hand for $1 an hour.

He's climbed the trees, built a swimming raft for the irrigation pond, and rumbled across the fields on a tractor.

But now, he's a stranger here.

"It feels odd," says Andrews, 34, examining a 20-year-old family portrait that hangs in the barn. In it, he, his two sisters and their folks pose in a raspberry field, each of them dressed in red-and-white checkered shirts and holding a basket of berries. It's full of joy and optimism – hardly the picture of farming today.

"I do feel nostalgia about the farm," he says.

Andrews is no longer a country boy. He lives six hours away, in Ottawa, where he's in his second year of law school. And he has no plans to return to the fields.

Neither do most of his peers. The statistics are distressingly clear – young people are leaving farming in droves. In Ontario, the number of farm operators aged 35 and under plunged by 35 per cent between 1996 and 2001. Since then, it's dropped another 21 per cent. Only 8.6 per cent of farmers are in that age group today.

Enrolment in agricultural colleges is plummeting. And the average age of the Ontario farmer keeps creeping up. Around Toronto, it's now 53.

Which raises the question: when they retire, will there be anyone left tilling the land?

It's what Wally Seccombe calls a "generation impasse." He is the founder and chair of Everdale, an organic farm near Orangeville that trains young farmers.

"If we want to be farming in Ontario in 20 years," he says, "we have to find a new generation who are not the sons and daughters of farmers and get them recruited on the land and farming in a very different way than we have before."

You don't have to dig deep to get to the roots of the problem. At its base are simple economics: for the most part, farming isn't a lucrative business anymore.

Around Toronto, most farms make less than a junior child-care worker – under $25,000 a year.

To survive, almost half of Ontario farmers work second jobs. With increased competition from places such as China and South Africa, it's harder to make a living wage.

"There's no money now," says Greg Downey, a 33-year-old who started working full-time on the family farm near Brampton 13 years ago, when the business was "more profitable." It's a decision he still questions, watching his bricklaying and banking brothers padding their bank accounts.

"If I was going back to college now, I wouldn't be coming home," he says. "I'd get into a trade."

The lifestyle doesn't help either. There are few days off and fewer vacations, due to monetary reasons and sheer logistics. Dairy cattle have to be milked twice a day, regardless of your baseball tickets or dinner date.

When Cecelia McMorrow was a child, members of her family used to take turns racing back to the farm every day while on vacation at a nearby cottage. "Every day of my life, every social function, I had to leave at 4 p.m.," says McMorrow, 26, who, despite being president of the Junior Farmers Association of Ontario, has no intentions of farming herself. "That's not a commitment I want to make."

She works for the Lindsay Agricultural Society but dreams of working in international development. Her parents, like many in the industry, encouraged her to go to university and study something other than agriculture. Farmers, like factory workers and taxi drivers, have bigger dreams for their children.

"The idea of farming as an exciting, viable, respectable profession doesn't exist now," says Christie Young, director of FarmStart, a Guelph non-profit organization bent on reversing the trend.

Even the few who do go into agriculture studies at university rarely return to the land. The majority land more secure agribusiness jobs, like working as a lab technician for a pesticide company or selling tractors for John Deere.

"The education system is not pushing people into farming," says Dave Lewington, 30, past youth president of the National Farmers Union. "It's grooming young people for jobs in agribusiness."

In high school, his guidance counsellor dismissed his plans to farm as "a waste of good marks," he says. He did it anyway, buying a spread near Sudbury, where land is still affordable, in 2004.

Which brings us to the overwhelming roadblock for the aspiring farmers who don't inherit an operation: land prices. Buying a farm around Toronto is like to buying a mansion in Forest Hill. Around the Andrews' farm near Milton, farmland is being scooped up by developers at $50,000 an acre. A 100-acre farm will sell for $5 million – and that's not including the tractors (a new one can cost as much as $250,000), irrigation pipes, seed and other necessities.

Few people under 35 have saved up $125,000 for a down payment, especially if they've been working, and getting experience, on a farm.

"Really, you'd have to win the lottery to get into farming (near Toronto)," says McMorrow. "For most people, that's not how they want to spend their winnings."

Renting land from a developer can be cheap. But it's risky. Andrews was growing winter wheat and corn on a nearby field and was kicked off without notice so the developer could build a driving range.

Without any security, it's hard to build up a business. Plus, it's not easy to find farmland to rent that comes with a barn and a house.

"There needs to be some perks to farming," says one young farmer. "You should at least have the joy of waking up on the farm."

There is a minority of young farmers swimming against the current. Many of those who don't inherit the business are drawn to farming for environmental reasons. They're what Seccombe dubs the "modern-day back-to-the-landers." Most are working on small-scale operations, growing organic food directly for specific customers. They're part of a new type of farming, called "relationship-farming," that's at the heart of the local food movement.

A just-released survey of alumni of a local organic farming program called Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training (CRAFT) revealed that most were young females who grew up in the city. They're people like Tarrah Young, who sees farming as environmental activism. She just bought 50 acres near Ayton, an hour northwest of Guelph, where she plans to raise organic pigs and turkeys.

"I feel I can make a change, even if it's only on 50 acres," says Young, 30. "I'm helping create a better model for food production and help people create better health."

She could only afford the farm with help from her parents. And, she expects to depend on her partner's earnings as a graphic designer to pay the mortgage. She reckons that in due time, she will be able to pay herself around $25,000 a year.

That makes her the exception. In the CRAFT survey of intern alumni, only 36 per cent were still farming – most tilling small plots (five acres and less) and not making a living off it. It raises the question: as a society, are we going to rely on idealism to feed us, along with the sacrifices of a few Thoreau-types willing to live on peanuts? It seems hardly a model food policy.

The Russian sunflowers tower over Kurtis Andrews' head as he walks around his father Bert's farm. Despite having left seven years ago, he's still a farmer at heart. You can take the man off the land, but you can't take the land out of the man ... Sunflowers, he explains, are planted in rows over weeks, to extend their season.

He bends down to examine a vine with orange flowers that, in a short time, will transform into pumpkins. And he points out the tracks made by raccoons that have devastated his father's corn crop.

Throughout the hour-long walk, his father keeps appearing on an ATV bearing pamphlets on berry growing or a handful of raspberries.

"Is my dad coming again?" Andrews exclaims. "I'm having flashbacks from when I was a kid."

He always planned to take over the family farm. After his family bought the land in 1980, he worked here every summer through school and university.

In 1998, he moved back full-time to start working with his father. But he found it difficult taking orders. And his father found it hard, after so long, to share control, he says.

It's typical not only of farming but of any family enterprise.

Father and son hired a consultant, who told Kurtis it would be best for him to leave. It was the most heart-wrenching decision of his life.

"The thing that's different about farming than a lot of other professions," he says, "is that it's your home, it's your job, it's your community and your social circle. It's everything in your life. To leave all that, it's really difficult."

Arctic 'last great frontier' for gas exploration

Arctic ‘last great frontier’ for gas exploration

By Javier Blas in London

Published: August 10 2007 21:22 | Last updated: August
10 2007 21:22

The Arctic Sea region is one of the last great
frontiers for oil and gas exploration. But developing
its resources and, crucially, transporting them to
consumer markets would be difficult and costly.

Geologists know little about the area compared with
other oil and gas provinces. Some of the surveys,
dating from the cold war when US and Soviet submarines
played cat-and-mouse in the area, remain secret even

Wood Mackenzie, in one of the most detailed studies of
the area, estimates that the Arctic basins, including
areas already in production such as the Prudhoe Bay
oilfield in Alaska, contain about 233bn barrels of oil
equivalent – a measure that covers both oil and gas.
It believes there are another 166bn boe yet to be

Adam Sieminski, chief energy economist at Deutsche
Bank in New York, said: “There is a good chance of
finding more oil and gas there. We know already of oil
deposits in northern Canada, the Barents Sea near
Russia and Alaska.”

The US geological survey plans as soon as next year to
assess whether the Arctic region, as some early
studies have indicated, contains up to 25 per cent of
the world’s yet-to-be-found oil and gas reserves.

Russia’s attempt to extend its sovereignty up to the
North Pole, however, is seen in the oil industry as a
political stunt. Moscow’s exclusive economic zone in
the Arctic Sea already contains giant basins, such as
the East Barents Sea, home of the huge Shtokman gas

The East Barents Sea alone is expected to contain more
than 10bn boe and is the cheapest to exploit in the
region, with production costs of about $20 a barrel,
according to calculations by Wood Mackenzie. In other
areas, such as Canada’s Southern Arctic Island,
production costs can be twice as high.

The remoteness and extreme climate conditions of some
corners of the Arctic present the energy industry with
a technological challenge that would long delay their
development, industry executives said.

Liv Monica Stubholt, Norway’s deputy foreign
min-ister, said this week: “We have decades ahead of
us before the technology to do this in a safe and
sustainable way is there.”

The recently published US National Petroleum Council
report on the future of oil and gas supplies said some
of the technology needed to exploit the Arctic’s
hydrocarbons would not be ready until 2050.

But Mr Sieminski said while the Arctic region was too
remote and hostile to make investment sense when oil
prices were about $20 a barrel, “with oil prices well
above $50 a barrel the outlook has changed”.

To complicate the scene, geologists say the region is
rich in natural gas but not in the more sought-after
crude oil.

Andrew Latham, of Wood Mackenzie, said remote natural
gas was harder to transport.

Natural gas needs to be super-cooled before being
shipped to consumer countries in complex and costly
liquefaction plants.

Pipelines are not an option for most of the Arctic
because of the huge distances that need to be covered.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2007

120 War Vets Commit Suicide Each Week

Earlier this year, using the clout that only major broadcast networks seem capable of mustering, CBS News contacted the governments of all 50 states requesting their official records of death by suicide going back 12 years. They heard back from 45 of the 50. From the mountains of gathered information, they sifted out the suicides of those Americans who had served in the armed forces. What they discovered is that in 2005 alone -- and remember, this is just in 45 states -- there were at least 6,256 veteran suicides, 120 every week for a year and an average of 17 every day.

As the widow of a Vietnam vet who killed himself after coming home, and as the author of a book for which I interviewed dozens of other women who had also lost husbands (or sons or fathers) to PTSD and suicide in the aftermath of the war in Vietnam, I am deeply grateful to CBS for undertaking this long overdue investigation. I am also heartbroken that the numbers are so astonishingly high and tentatively optimistic that perhaps now that there are hard numbers to attest to the magnitude of the problem, it will finally be taken seriously. I say tentatively because this is an administration that melts hard numbers on their tongues like communion wafers.

Since these new wars began, and in spite of a continuous flood of alarming reports, the Department of Defense has managed to keep what has clearly become an epidemic of death beneath the radar of public awareness by systematically concealing statistics about soldier suicides. They have done everything from burying them on official casualty lists in a category they call "accidental noncombat deaths" to outright lying to the parents of dead soldiers. And the Department of Veterans Affairs has rubber-stamped their disinformation, continuing to insist that their studies indicate that soldiers are killing themselves, not because of their combat experiences, but because they have "personal problems."

Active-duty soldiers, however, are only part of the story. One of the well-known characteristics of post-traumatic stress injuries is that the onset of symptoms is often delayed, sometimes for decades. Veterans of World War II, Korea and Vietnam are still taking their own lives because new PTSD symptoms have been triggered, or old ones retriggered, by stories and images from these new wars. Their deaths, like the deaths of more recent veterans, are written up in hometown newspapers; they are locally mourned, but officially ignored. The VA doesn't track or count them. It never has. Both the VA and the Pentagon deny that the problem exists and sanctimoniously point to a lack of evidence they have refused to gather.

They have managed this smoke and mirrors trick for decades in large part because suicide makes people so uncomfortable. It has often been called "that most secret death" because no one wants to talk about it. Over time, in different parts of the world, attitudes have fluctuated between the belief that the act is a sin, a right, a crime, a romantic gesture, an act of consummate bravery or a symptom of mental illness. It has never, however, been an emotionally neutral issue. In the United States, the rationalism of our legal system has acknowledged for 300 years that the act is almost always symptomatic of a mental illness. For those same 300 years, organized religions have stubbornly maintained that it's a sin. In fact, the very worst sin. The one that is never forgiven because it's too late to say you're sorry.

The contradiction between religious doctrine and secular law has left suicide in some kind of nether space in which the fundamentals of our systems of justice and belief are disrupted. A terrible crime has been committed, a murder, and yet there can be no restitution, no punishment. As sin or as mental illness, the origins of suicide live in the mind, illusive, invisible, associated with the mysterious, the secretive and the undisciplined, a kind of omnipresent Orange Alert. Beware the abnormal. Beware the Other.

For years now, this administration has been blasting us with high-decibel, righteous posturing about suicide bombers, those subhuman dastards who do the unthinkable, using their own bodies as lethal weapons. "Those people, they aren't like us; they don't value life the way we do," runs the familiar xenophobic subtext: And sometimes the text isn't even sub-: "Many terrorists who kill innocent men, women, and children on the streets of Baghdad are followers of the same murderous ideology that took the lives of our citizens in New York, in Washington and Pennsylvania," proclaimed W, glibly conflating Sept. 11, the invasion of Iraq, Islam, fanatic fundamentalism and human bombs.

Bush has also expressed the opinion that suicide bombers are motivated by despair, neglect and poverty. The demographic statistics on suicide bombers suggest that this isn't the necessarily the case. Most of the Sept. 11 terrorists came from comfortable middle- to upper-middle-class families and were well-educated. Ironically, despair, neglect and poverty may be far more significant factors in the deaths of American soldiers and veterans who are taking their own lives.

Consider the 25 percent of enlistees and the 50 percent of reservists who have come back from the war with serious mental health issues. Despair seems an entirely appropriate response to the realization that the nightmares and flashbacks may never go away, that your ability to function in society and to manage relationships, work schedules or crowds will never be reliable. How not to despair if your prognosis is: Suck it up, soldier. This may never stop!

Neglect? The VA's current backlog is 800,000 cases. Aside from the appalling conditions in many VA hospitals, in 2004, the last year for which statistics are available, almost 6 million veterans and their families were without any healthcare at all. Most of them are working people -- too poor to afford private coverage, but not poor enough to qualify for Medicaid or means-tested VA care. Soldiers and veterans need help now, the help isn't there, and the conversations about what needs to be done are only just now beginning.

Poverty? The symptoms of post-traumatic stress injuries or traumatic brain injuries often make getting and keeping a job an insurmountable challenge. The New York Times reported last week that though veterans make up only 11 percent of the adult population, they make up 26 percent of the homeless. If that doesn't translate into despair, neglect and poverty, well, I'm not sure the distinction is one worth quibbling about.

There is a particularly terrible irony in the relationship between suicide bombers and the suicides of American soldiers and veterans. With the possible exception of some few sadists and psychopaths, Americans don't enlist in the military because they want to kill civilians. And they don't sign up with the expectation of killing themselves. How incredibly sad that so many end up dying of remorse for having performed acts that so disturb their sense of moral selfhood that they sentence themselves to death.

There is something so smugly superior in the way we talk about suicide bombers and the cultures that produce them. But here is an unsettling thought. In 2005, 6,256 American veterans took their own lives. That same year, there were about 130 documented deaths of suicide bombers in Iraq.* Do the math. That's a ratio of 50-to-1. So who is it that is most effectively creating a culture of suicide and martyrdom? If George Bush is right, that it is despair, neglect and poverty that drive people to such acts, then isn't it worth pointing out that we are doing a far better job?

*I say "about" because in the aftermath of a suicide bombing, it is often very difficult for observers to determine how many individual bodies have been blown to pieces.

Penny Coleman is the widow of a Vietnam veteran who took his own life after coming home. Her latest book, Flashback: Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, Suicide and the Lessons of War, was released on Memorial Day, 2006. Her blog is Flashback.
© 2007 Independent Media Institute. All rights reserved.
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"Oprah and Friends" to teach course on New Age Christ

"Oprah and Friends" To Teach Course on New Age Christ

By Warren Smith

Oprah Winfrey will be letting out all the stops on her XM Satellite Radio program this coming year. Beginning January 1, 2008, “Oprah & Friends” will offer a year-long course on the New Age teachings of A Course in Miracles.1 A lesson a day throughout the year will completely cover the 365 lessons from the Course in Miracles “Workbook.” For example, Lesson #29 asks you to go through your day affirming that “God is in everything I see.”2 Lesson #61 tells each person to repeat the affirmation “I am the light of the world.”3 Lesson #70 teaches the student to say and believe “My salvation comes from me.”4

By the end of the year, “Oprah & Friends” listeners will have completed all of the lessons laid out in the Course in Miracles Workbook. Those who finish the Course will have a wholly redefined spiritual mindset—a New Age worldview that includes the belief that there is no sin, no evil, no devil, and that God is “in” everyone and everything. A Course in Miracles teaches its students to rethink everything they believe about God and life. The Course Workbook bluntly states: “This is a course in mind training”5 and is dedicated to “thought reversal.”6

Teaching A Course in Miracles will be Oprah’s longtime friend and special XM Satellite Radio reporter Marianne Williamson—who also happens to be one of today’s premier New Age leaders. She and Conversations with God author Neale Donald Walsch co-founded the American Renaissance Alliance in 1997, that later became the Global Renaissance Alliance of New Age leaders, that changed its name again in 2005 to the Peace Alliance. This Peace Alliance seeks to usher in an era of global peace founded on the principles of a New Age/New Spirituality that they are now referring to as a “civil rights movement for the soul.”7 They all agree that the principles of this New Age/New Spirituality are clearly articulated in A Course in Miracles—which is fast becoming the New Age Bible. So what is A Course in Miracles and what does it teach?

A Course in Miracles is allegedly “new revelation” from “Jesus” to help humanity work through these troubled times. This “Jesus”—who bears no doctrinal resemblance to the Bible’s Jesus Christ—began delivering his channeled teachings in 1965 to a Columbia University Professor of Medical Psychology by the name of Helen Schucman. One day Schucman heard an “inner voice” stating, “This is a course in miracles. Please take notes.”8 For seven years she diligently took spiritual dictation from this inner voice that described himself as “Jesus.” A Course in Miracles was quietly published in 1975 by the Foundation for Inner Peace. For many years “the Course” was an underground cult classic for New Age seekers who studied “the Course” individually, with friends, or in small study groups.

As a former New Age follower and devoted student of A Course in Miracles, I eventually discovered that the Course in Miracles was—in reality—the truth of the Bible turned upside down. Not having a true understanding of the Bible at the time of my involvement, I was led to believe that A Course in Miracles was “a gift form God” to help everyone understand the “real” meaning of the Bible and to help bring peace to the world. Little did I know that the New Age “Christ” and the New Age teachings of A Course in Miracles were everything the real Jesus Christ warned us to watch out for. In Matthew 24 Jesus warned about false teachers, false teachings and the false “Christs” who would pretend to be Him.

When I left the New Age “Christ” to follow the Bible’s Jesus Christ, I had come to understand that the “Jesus” of A Course in Miracles was a false “Christ,” and that his Course in Miracles was dangerously deceptive. Here are some quotes from the “Jesus” of A Course in Miracles:

* “There is no sin. . . “9
* A “slain Christ has no meaning.”10
* “The journey to the cross should be the last ‘useless journey.’”11
* “Do not make the pathetic error of ‘clinging to the old rugged cross.’”12
* “The Name of Jesus Christ as such is but a symbol. . . . It is a symbol that is safely used as a replacement for the many names of all the gods to which you pray.”13
* “God is in everything I see.”14
* “The recognition of God is the recognition of yourself.”15
* “The oneness of the Creator and the creation is your wholeness, your sanity and your limitless power.”16
* “The Atonement is the final lesson he [man] need learn, for it teaches him that, never having sinned, he has no need of salvation.”17

Most Christians recognize that these teachings are the opposite of what the Bible teaches. In the Bible, Jesus Christ’s atoning death on the cross of Calvary was hardly a “useless journey.” His triumph on the cross provides salvation to all those who confess their sin, accept Him and follow Him as their Lord and Saviour. His victory on the cross rings throughout the New Testament. It has been gloriously sung about in beloved hymns through the ages and is at the heart of our Christian testimony. I found the Jesus of the Bible to be wholly believable as He taught God’s truth and warned about the spiritual deception that would come in His name. The “Jesus” of A Course in Miracles reveals himself to be an imposter when he blasphemes the true Jesus Christ by saying that a “slain Christ has no meaning” and that we are all “God” and that we are all “Christ.” It was by reading the Bible’s true teachings of Jesus Christ that I came to understand how deceived I had been by A Course in Miracles and my other New Age teachings.

I was introduced to A Course in Miracles by Dr. Gerald Jampolsky’s book Love is Letting Go of Fear. Jampolsky declared in his easy-to-read book how the teachings of A Course in Miracles had changed his life. As an ambassador for A Course in Miracles over the years, Jampolsky has been featured not only in New Age circles but at least twice on Robert Schuller’s Hour of Power. While Schuller introduced Jampolsky and his “fabulous”18 Course in Miracles-based books to his worldwide television audience, it was Marianne Williamson’s appearance on a 1992 Oprah Winfrey Show that really shook the rafters.

On that program, Oprah enthusiastically endorsed Williamson’s book, A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles. Oprah told her television audience that Williamson’s book about A Course in Miracles was one of her favorite books, and that she had already bought a thousand copies and would be handing them out to everyone in her studio audience. Oprah’s endorsement skyrocketed Williamson’s book about A Course in Miracles to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. Ironically, all of this was happening after I had left the Course and the New Age. In fact, I was doing the final editing on my book The Light That Was Dark that warned about the dangers of the New Age—and in particular A Course in Miracles.

After being introduced to the world on Oprah, Marianne Williamson has continued to grow in popularity and, as previously mentioned, has become one of today’s foremost New Age leaders. Williamson credits Winfrey for bringing her book about A Course in Miracles before the world: “For that, my deepest thanks to Oprah Winfrey. Her enthusiasm and generosity have given the book, and me, an audience we would never otherwise have had.”19 In her 2004 book, The Gift of Change, Williamson wrote: “Twenty years ago, I saw the guidance of the Course as key to changing one’s personal life; today, I see its guidance as key to changing the world. More than anything else, I see how deeply the two are connected.”20

Thus the New Age teachings of A Course in Miracles are about to be taught by Marianne Williamson to millions of listeners on Oprah’s XM Satellite Radio program. Listeners are encouraged to buy A Course in Miracles for the year-long course. An audio version of A Course in Miracles recited by Richard (John Boy Walton) Thomas is also available on compact disc. Popular author Wayne Dyer told his PBS television audience that the “brilliant writing” of A Course in Miracles would produce more peace in the world.21 Williamson’s New Age colleague, Neale Donald Walsch, said his “God” stated that “the era of the Single Saviour is over”22 and that he (“God”) was responsible for authoring the teachings of A Course in Miracles.23 Meanwhile, Gerald Jampolsky’s Course in Miracles-based book, Forgiveness, continues to be sold in Robert Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral bookstore as Schuller prepares to host a January 17-19, 2008, “Rethink Conference” at his Crystal Cathedral.24

At this critical time in the history of the world, the New Gospel/New Spirituality is coming right at the world and the church with its New Age teachings and its New Age Peace Plan. But this New Age Peace Plan has at its deceptive core the bottom-line teaching from A Course in Miracles that “we are all one” because God is “in” everyone and everything. But the Bible is clear that we are not God (Ezekiel 28:2; Hosea 11:9). And per Galatians 3:26-28, our only oneness is in Jesus Christ—not in ourselves as “God” and “Christ.” What Oprah and Marianne Williamson and the world will learn one day is that humanity’s only real and lasting peace is with the true Jesus Christ who is described and quoted in the Holy Bible (Romans 5:1).

Oprah Winfrey’s misplaced faith in Marianne Williamson and the New Age teachings of A Course in Miracles is a sure sign of the times. But an even surer sign of the times is that most Christians are not taking heed to what is happening in the world and in the church. We are not contending for the faith as the Bible admonishes us to do (Jude 3). It is time for all of our Purpose-Driven and Emerging church pastors to address the real issue of the day. Our true Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is being reinvented, redefined, and blasphemed right in front of our eyes and hardly anyone seems to notice or care. If we want the world to know who Jesus Christ is, we need to also warn them about who He is not. There is a false New Age “Christ” making huge inroads into the world and into the church. The Apostle Paul said that “it is a shame” we have to even talk about these things, but talk about them we must (Ephesians 5:12-16).

If people want to follow Oprah Winfrey and the New Age “Christ” of A Course in Miracles they certainly have that right. But let them be warned that the New Age “Christ” they are following is not the same Jesus Christ who is so clearly and authoritatively presented in the pages of the Bible.

Warren Smith is a former New Age follower who at one time was deeply involved in the New Age teachings of A Course in Miracles. He is the author of The Light That Was Dark: From the New Age to Amazing Grace and Deceived on Purpose: The New Age Implications of the Purpose-Driven Church. His book Reinventing Jesus Christ: The New Gospel is available free online at