Dance in the Liturgy

In the concerts, imageries of Radha Krishna share a platform with the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ

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In the concerts, imageries of Radha Krishna share a platform with the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Fr Saju takes with him lot of dancers from Kalakshetra in his anti-Hindu crusade of the world... People like Sri K Rajkumar, Khagendra Nath Barman, Padmashri Leela Samson, Nadabrahmam Prof. C V Chandrasekhar (all from Kalakshetra, Chennai) and Padmabhushan Kalanidhi Narayanan and Kalaimamani Priyadarshini Govind accompanied this "foolish dancing father" the world over to prove that Bharatanatyam can be adapted to BIBLICAL AND THEOSOPHICAL ideals. Besides, Mrs Leela Samson is supported by The Theosophical society in Chennai, Adyar.

This society studies day and night Hindu scriptures only as a spy who wants to copy the functioning of a machinery of his enemy and only in the aim of diluting Hindu genius in the ocean of secularism and level the distinctive flavours of Hinduism with other monotheistic religions so as to make it as colourless and as insipid as possible. A cursory look of their website can make this point clear. They rename and give secular terms to Hindu notions of grandeur. They call Atman as Logos. If they really respected its originality why they want to delink Atman from Vedic traditions?

Go and say to French wine makers that the label of Champagne can be put on any other bottle. Will they keep quiet? The basic "bon sens" (common sense) as they call it in French lacks in their objective.

Padmashri Leela Samson has been with a supportive nod from Sonia successfully bagged the post of Director of Kalakshetra with a clear mission to pervert Bharatanatyam as a fusion dance that any western secularist may use for his Christian conversion activities of weak Hindus. Thus as a Director of this prestigious school, she is removing all Ganesh idols in Kalakshetra as per the orders she receive from her superior in VATICAN.

Please go to the following link for more information on her anti-Hindu activities:

This funny father and this silly sister form a fanatic front in Chennai attacking the Tamil culture from all sides with their money power! Will this fatal couple reap poor Tamil souls for their religions or will they finish as "outlaws" in the eyes of all Bharatanatyam lovers the world over?

This proselytizing father and this fanatic lady will continue to dance Bharatanatyam to promote an Abrahamic desert God who is more to do with a Palestinian than a South Indian culture Unless we all say "no" to this visual aggression and distortion of our art, there is no stopping these people from confusing Hindus who can be easily lured to Christianity.

Besides, to prove he has knowledge of Hinduism and his dance is based on a sound mastery of Hinduism, he has managed to get a Ph. D. in the Saiva Tradition from the Madras University!

What a wicked man this father from Kerala where he had tested all these anti-Hindu tricks before trying to apply them in Tamilnadu! But then, can we really blame him? He is just trying to do what those in Vatican asks him to do.

THE PROBLEM IS THE WILL TO PROLETYTISE IMBIBED IN THOSE FANATIC ROMAN CATHOLICS AND CHRISITANS because they are obsessed with the western disillusion with Christ and are afraid if they could not get a billion Hindus in their clutches, they would not able to make this multinational machinery function as usual as Europeans and Americans are deserting massively day by day the Christian and Catholic churches.

7. Bharathanatiyam and Christianity by Swamy Natan June 16, 2008 EXTRACT
Nowadays Christians are sponsoring Bharathanatiyam programmes by insisting one or two dances to be on Jesus so that it can mix with Hindu culture to weaken the heritage and culture.
Bharathanatiyam programmes in Chennai are most sought after for western foreigners who take the artistes to their country for organising some programme and they also learning by staying in Chennai. There are more than 30-50 westerners who are in Chennai to learn Barathanatiyam. Hence missionaries suddenly started showing love for Hindu culture to evangelize as if this is common to all including to Christianity by inserting Jesus stories in dances.
There is a separate Barathanatiyam school run by a father funded by missionaries at Tiruchi* to train Christian students in this ancient Hindu dance. *Kalai Kaviri, Fr. S. M. George, pages 49-52

Last year Chennai Sangamam, a culture programme organised by Christian-backed daughter of Karunanidhi, Kanimozhi whose husband is a Christian and main sponsors are Christians - mainly Father jagan gasper*. He funded this programme by inserting Christian songs in Barathanatiyam dances in city parks and in public places without making people suspicious as it was included carefully along with Hindu dances. *Fr. Jegath Gaspar Raj. See comments and link on page 49

Kalakshetra ground performed a dance which talked high about Jesus typically along with the tune of Karunanidhi ''onedre kulam, orevane devan''. Hence all Hindu artistes must be very careful in accepting any programmes and should not be lured by offers of money for such programmes by missionaries’ front line people who would hold Hindu name like tiger wearing the skin of deer to fool other animals.
Christianity is the curse to the society and all Hindus must tell their friends about the danger posed by missionaries.
How many dancers know the history of Bharathanatyam? by Shankar, New York June 17, 2008 EXTRACT
Mr. Sreenath (name is not real) an ex-Kalakshetra genius now running a well reputed dance school in New York. He is one of the great Indian dancers living in USA with hundreds of American students. He is a regular performer in White House and other major venues.
Once he was invited to perform an Indian classical dance in the city hall where Governor and Mayor were chief guests.


He choreographed a new item to perform on the stage and started practicing with his students. One of the organizers who happened to be a Kerala Christian approached him and asked him to do a dance based on a bible story. He refused it and explained him what Bharathanatyam was. He had tremendous pressure from the organizers to go with the idea of bible Bharathanatyam. Finally he declared his withdrawal form the program and opposed the idea of vandalizing an age old tradition according to the organizers wish. This issue sparked some flames and reached in front of Mayor and other city officials. Mr. Sreenath explained them he was unable to dilute the sacredness of a great Indian art form. Mayor requested him to conduct Bharathanatyam as per the [HINDU] customs and traditions. He did a fantastic job and was honored by the city and state officials. How many stupid dance teachers have the guts to talk like this? How many of them know the history of Bharathanatyam?

Attempt at Christianization of Bharatanatyam by K M Muralidharan July 1, 2008 EXTRACT

Saju George is wasting his time. His attempt will have the same fate as the fiasco that met the presentation of Bible "story" (sic) on Doordarshan. Attempts at presenting Semitic themes through Bharatanatyam are as childish as attempt at preserving an uncured dead body in a beautiful silk cloth. Any Hindu artiste who co-operates for a few pelf with this type of destructive forces should think for a moment about what would be the state of the beautiful silk cloth after a short time.
Bharathanatyam and the Padri Conspiracy by Sunita Rani July 3, 2008 EXTRACT

Bharathanatyam is a Hindu art form. No true artiste will allow its prostitution for presenting the anti-human ideas of a predator religion which had soaked the whole Europe in human blood, which had orphaned millions of children, and which had perpetrated uncountable nefarious violence on millions of men and women.
Shame on Jesuit imposters like Saju George!
8. "Theological Prostitution" by [Francis] Clooney [SJ] and others EXTRACT

Inculturation of dance [7]: The misuse of Indian dance, particularly "Bharatanatyam" has been very significant. Again, remember that these guys have been carrying out the propaganda that "Bharatanatyam" was nothing but "temple prostitution", the high-caste Hindus make low caste women as "public dancers" so that they can be used as "prostitutes" and so on. Why then, do these "spiritual bastards" indulge in such "prostitution"?

Do they want to produce "Church prostitution" that has been there already under the guise of "Bharatanatyam"?
At one side, they criticize that all these have been the works of "Satan", but note, only the member of "Society of Jesus" have been engaged in such dubious activities.
Bharata Naatyam: Biblical themes through Bharata Naatyam (South Indian classical dance) by Francis P. Barboza
Barboza… has been specializing Bharatanatyam and converting it into Christianity [8]. Soon, he might declare that they only taught it to the Indians.

9. An Intro to Indian Dance by Sangeeta

Ganesha is traditionally worshipped at the beginning of any endeavour*. He is the remover of all obstacles and is known to be very wise. He is the son of Shiva and Parvati and the brother of Murugan. *GANPATI- See page 78
10. Images of Classical Indian Dance

In the form of the Lord of Dance, Shiva is known as Nataraj and is worshipped by all Classical Indian dancers.
11a. Conversion is an Act of Violence by Swami Dayananda Saraswati EXTRACT

Religion and culture are not often separable. This is especially true with the Hindu religious tradition.

The greeting word, namaste, is an expression of culture as well as religion. Even though a religious mark on the forehead is purely religious, it is looked upon as a part of Hindu culture. Rangoli (patterns drawn on the ground with rice flour) at the entrance of a Hindu house is not just cultural; it is also religious.

Indian music and dance cannot separate themselves from the Hindu religious tradition. There is no classical dance, bharata natyam, without Siva Nataraja being there.

The classical, lyrical compositions of Meera, Tyagaraja, Purandara, Dikshitar and many others are intimately connected to the Hindu religious traditions.  103.

The rest of the above article is here with the already-copied portion omitted and shown thus […]:

11b. Conversion violence by Swami Dayananda Saraswati

The world's religions can be categorically said to be either aggressive or non aggressive. Each religion has a certain promise in the form of an ultimate goal. Their faithful people try to live the prescribed life and reach the promised goal. Neither they nor their clergy are out to bring the people of other religions to their flock. Zoroastrians follow their religious tradition without attempting to convert anybody to their religion. This is true with the followers of the Jewish tradition, Vedic religion (now known as Hinduism), Shintoism, Taoism and the many other religions of various tribes in the world. I call these religious traditions non aggressive because they do not believe in aggressive conversion.

Then there are religions like Christianity, whose theologies, containing a number of basic non verifiable beliefs, advocate conversion. Evangelism and proselytization are sacred commitments of the entire cadre of the highly organized clergy. The clergy-inspired laity is not any less committed to conversion. They are zealous in their mission of preaching and conversion. In their zeal, the end more often than not justifies the means. From the days of the Inquisition, every attempt recorded in history to stop their program of conversion only stoked their flame of zeal.

As a result, many religions with their unique cultures have disappeared, leaving behind only mammoth relics, like the ones in Greece and Mexico. The loss of such great living cultures of the world is the mark of success for the zealous of the aggressive religions. The truth is that where there should be a sense of guilt and remorse, there is a sense of achievement and pride. Many leaders of non aggressive traditions think that the charity of the missionaries is designed to neutralize any protest from the native religious community. One cannot totally dismiss their thinking.

Religious conversion by missionary activity remains an act of violence. It is an act of violence because it hurts deeply, not only the other members of the family of the converted, but the entire community that comes to know of it. One is connected to various persons in ones world. The religious person in every individual is the innermost, in as much as he or she is connected to a force beyond the empirical. The religious person is connected only to the force beyond he has now accepted. That is the reason why the hurt caused by religion can turn into violence. That is why a religious belief can motivate a missionary to be a martyr. When the hurt of the religious becomes acute, it explodes into violence. Conversion is violence. It generates violence.

Aggressive religions and non aggressive religions are not on the same plank. Conversion is, therefore, a rank, one-sided aggression. The genius of the non aggressive traditions cannot change, and therefore, they cannot be asked to do the same thing as the aggressive religions do.

Humanity cannot afford to lose any more of its existing living religious traditions and cultures. We want to enjoy the religious cultures of both Christianity and Islam as we also want to enjoy the cultures of Jews, Parsis, Taoists, Shintoists, Hindus and others. Humanity will not let a pyramid be razed to the ground by the Egyptian government to create a housing complex. Even though they are in Egypt, the pyramids are too ancient to be the property of that country. They are standing monuments of human genius--they belong to the whole of humanity. So, too, are all the monuments of the past lying all over the world. […] Therefore, conversion implies destruction of this entire culture.

A committed Christian will not wear a tilakam*, much less have rangoli in front of the house. If there is no rangoli at the entrance to a Tamil Nadu house, we immediately know that it doesn't belong to a Hindu. A converted Christian woman ceases to wear Indian traditional clothes, like saris, etc. No Christian woman will wear a nose ring. It is amazing how easily cultures disappear by the program of conversion through various means, leaving only dead monuments to be preserved for posterity. The living religious traditions, intimately woven into the fabric of their respective cultures, have to be allowed to live and thrive. Religious conversion should stop--the aggressive religions should realize that they are perpetrating violence when they convert. We want them to live and let others live. END *bottu, bindi, dot in the centre of the forehead

A committed Christian will also therefore not do Bharatanatyam!
On the preceding five pages, we have seen good Hindus defending their religious and spiritual “intellectual property rights” which Indian Catholic priests and institutions are misappropriating, annexing, adapting and adopting in the name of inculturation or of “preaching the Good News”.

We have seen these good Hindus blame the Vatican for what the Indian Church is doing, because to an outsider, it looks that way.

The Bishops are either silent spectators, or they encourage these dancing priests by felicitating them, or they themselves launch institutes for the promotion of Indian-Hindu dance forms.

Two points must be made very clear to Catholic readers:

1. Rome has nothing to do with this false inculturation which is a virtual Hinduisation of our Faith.

2. There is not even the littlest intention or faintest idea of “converting” anyone in the minds of these dancing priests -- who themselves have rejected the real Jesus Christ for a Christ of their own invention -- and the Bishops who back them. If any Hindu approached these priests for catechesis, he would only be able to give them what he holds to be true: that all gods are one, that all religions lead to that god, that a good Hindu must remain a good Hindu… and so one.

If I’m now going to be accused of putting my words in their mouths or of judging them, I would request the objector to take a proper look at the what these priests have been quoted as saying.

We have also seen good Hindus, including several of the priestly Brahmin caste [one of whom is a friend of mine], testify that

Bharatanatyam is irretrievably Hindu, that

Bharatanatyam is irrefutably a Hindu religious art form which is inextricably associated with their deities Ganesha [Ganpati] and Nataraj [Shiva], and that

Hindus vehemently object to Bharatanatyam’s being bastardized by the Catholic Church.
While copying the above pages, I have taken care to see that all the selections bar two [items 9. and 10.] concern the issue of Hindu dance being plagiarized by the Indian Catholic Church.

It is my intention to quote -- in my forthcoming article Bharatanatyam-II -- the opinions of eminent Hindus, especially Brahmins, from an academic perspective, meaning that thy are not preaching to anybody, not defending their religious-cultural property against Christian take-over, but simply stating what Bharatanatyam is. Such a follow-up is really not essential after all the information made available in this document, but it will be a further help to nail the lies of the dancing priests and to underline the incontrovertible fact that Bharatanatyam is indeed Hindu to its very core.
The opinion of Suma Varughese, the Chief Editor of Life Positive*, India’s first New Age magazine

12. Images Suma Varughese

Behold the dancing Nataraj as he swirls through eternity, in perfect tandem with time. Left leg strafing the air, tresses winging behind him, his thundering tandav forges the endless cycle of birth and death. And yet there is a way out, his hands tell us, pointing to his right foot placed upon the demon of ignorance. Enlightenment will release you from the cycle. Simultaneously creating change and transcending it, the Lord is the perfect symbol of life's mastery

I close this section as I had begun, with Catholic information on music and dance in the Liturgy

1. Liturgical Renewals: should we continue?

The link is not opening now. Hence I have copied the information from the Konkani Catholics site

Posted on: Feb 10, 2009 12:21 PM by Austine J. Crasta, Mangalore, owner-moderator of Konkani Catholics

Have liturgical renewals, which adapted Indian music, dance and other cultural elements in the Mass, helped the Church’s growth?  

The Mass is not a museum of the world's culture. It is common knowledge that Inculturation in India has, even before it was released, far exceeded the vision of the Second Vatican Council as outlined in "Varietates legitimae", the Fourth Instruction for the Right Implementation of the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, issued January 25, 1994.

With such an extreme, an average Catholic today does not even realize that the very fact that the liturgy is celebrated in the vernacular is an expression of the Church's inculturation/adaptation.

Given such poor understanding, a spirit of endless experimentation continues to drive the inculturation efforts in a perpetual quest for a "new way of being church"! Thanks partly to the fight over the rites and the hybridisation attempts to 'create' an "Indian rite"!

From the dropping of the Proper chants of the Mass (Introit, Offertory, and Communion) to the abhorrence of every trace of Latin, from the introduction of liturgical dances to bold and sacrilegious experimentation with the "matter" for the sacred host, the liturgy in India is only losing its sense of the sacred, to say the least.

When liturgy becomes man's work, then God becomes the spectator as we journey to the Jerusalem of our invention, not the one above.
2. Apostolic Exhortation on the Eucharist, Papal liturgical ceremonies under review May 2006

The Church Around the World

In June Pope Benedict XVI will receive the final proposal from the recent Synod of Bishops for the drafting of his Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation on the Eucharist. The commission of 12 cardinals and bishops from around the world, led by the secretary of the Synod of Bishops, Archbishop Nicola Eterovic, will meet in June to present the Holy Father with a final proposal based on the 50 propositions that were made at the conclusion of last October's Synod.

According to a Vatican source, the commission will approve "a proposal and a plan for liturgical reform", to be made public in the Apostolic Exhortation the Holy Father will tentatively issue in October 2006.

The Vatican source said the exhortation would include an invitation to greater use of Latin in the daily prayer of the Church and in the Mass - with the exception of the Liturgy of the Word - as well as in large public and international Masses.


The document would also encourage a greater use of Gregorian chant and classical polyphonic music; the gradual elimination of the use of songs whose music or lyrics are secular in origin, as well as the elimination of instruments that are "inadequate for liturgical use," such as the electric guitar or drums, although it is not likely that specific instruments will be mentioned.

Lastly, the Pope is expected to call for "more decorum and liturgical sobriety in the celebration of the Eucharist, excluding dance and, as much as possible, applause."

Papal liturgical ceremonies under review

Benedict XVI is reviewing plans for papal liturgical celebrations, according to the Vatican's top liturgist.

Archbishop Piero Marini, the master of ceremonies for papal liturgies, spoke on this subject on 20 March, during a visit to Milan for the publication of his book, Liturgy and Beauty. Archbishop Marini revealed that Benedict XVI was more demanding than his predecessor in watching plans for liturgical celebrations at the Vatican.

"With John Paul II I had a bit more freedom," he said. "We had an implicit pact, because he was a man of prayer and not a liturgist." With the new Pope, "I have to be more attentive because he is an expert on liturgy."

Archbishop Marini said that he and the Pope were carrying out a re-examination of papal liturgical celebrations. He regularly sends his notes to the Pope, who returns them with corrections, suggestions, or a note of approval.

Since 1987, Archbishop Marini has made plans for all major papal liturgical celebrations. During that time he became a figure of some controversy at the Vatican, with some prelates objecting to the ceremonies he has devised.

For instance, after canonisation ceremonies that incorporated traditional African and Indian dance elements in October 2003, Cardinal Francis Arinze, the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, spoke of "uncontrolled creativity" and a "too fertile imagination". Archbishop Marini has also been criticised for downgrading the use of Gregorian chant and polyphony in favour of more contemporary and popular music.

Archbishop Marini became involved in liturgical affairs as a young priest, serving as personal secretary to the late Archbishop Annibale Bugnini, the principal architect of liturgical changes in the wake of Vatican II. His approach has been criticised by those who favour a more traditional approach - including, in the past, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger.

The history of past disagreements between the current Pope and his chief liturgist had caused some observers to predict that Archbishop Marini would soon be replaced as the papal master of ceremonies. But nearly a year after the Pope's election he remains at his post.
3. [Dance] cannot be introduced into liturgical celebrations: that would mean bringing into the liturgy one of the most desacralized and desacralizing elements; and this would be the same as creating an atmosphere of profanity which would easily evoke in those present and in those taking part in the celebration worldly places and situations.
—Congregation for the Sacraments and Divine Worship, Notitiae, June-July 1975, p. 202 (emphasis added)
Take a break. If you’ve watched the horrible videos of the Bharatanatyam-priests, you may now be comforted by the mind of the Church: watch Cardinal Francis Arinze speak on Liturgical Dancing

4. VIDEO- liturgical_dance_cardinal_arinze


Is it a grievous sin for one to give a Bharatanatyam recital or to encourage another to learn it or to perform Bharatanatyam? No, and yes.

It’s certainly not a sin for a Hindu to do Bharatanatyam. She or he is worshiping her or his gods in that dance. Hinduism is an open-ended religion that accommodates anything and everything, not excluding the worship of St. Anthony of Padua and Mary, the Mother of Jesus, both of whom may not be worshiped even by Catholics.

But if Bharatanatyam is a spiritual or religious-cultural exercise that pays homage to “other gods”, then it would be forbidden for Catholics to have any association with it. If one did so, that would be against the First Commandment of God. The early Christians refused to pay homage even to Caesar.

What does the evidence provided by me in the article show? The priests who perform, propagate or permit Bharatanatyam, especially during the Holy Mass, and also in the liturgical areas are in disobedience to Rome’s directives on the Liturgy. For Catholics, the Church’s teaching is the voice of God. God speaks to the world through the teachings of the Catholic Church.

If priests dance in the parish halls, parish schools, Catholic institutions or even the music sabhas, didn’t we read that Rome does not encourage her priests to dance?

See pages 2, “the priest must always be excluded from the dance”, 5, 9 and 10.

And what if these Catholic priests are actually doing the Bharatanatyam in Hindu temples – even at their Kumbabishekams or consecrations of their deities as I have shown?

If some of you old-timers like me have read with the mind of the Church some of the statements of these same priests, then it must have struck you that even for a lay person to have said those same things -- which reflect their personal spiritual beliefs -- two or three decades ago would have been nothing short of heresy, or a mortal sin that put one outside a relationship with the living God until it was confessed to a priest.

I reproduce here a paragraph from pages 12, 13 of this report:

Liturgical Dance and Inculturation 

Some dances and gestures from pre-Christian traditions relate to cults or worship of false gods, even demons, not to mention the erotic overtones of some dances that would also exclude them from Catholic worship. Borrowing from another religious culture, for example Hinduism, may also raise problems of catechetical confusion or even syncretism- Most Rev. Peter John Elliott, Auxiliary Bishop of Melbourne, Australia
On page 91, I had commented: A Catholic cannot but be affected to a lesser or greater extent by dabbling in yoga and other eastern meditations, Bharatanatyam, etc.

Let me draw your attention to excerpts from two January 2006 letters [reproduced earlier in this report] from a leader in ministry in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal

-In one of the school retreats, I saw my first deliverance case also. She started dancing bharatnatyam in the middle of the infilling session, poor girl!
-When that bharatnatyam announcement took place, I took it up strongly with the Youth Service Team. But then I realised they did it more out of ignorance than anything else. When that deliverance case happened soon afterwards, it only vindicated what I had told them and then they realised. So I am confident they will be more careful in future.

THAT’S what happens when a Catholic does Bharatanatyam!

The "deliverance" was from an evil spirit that had entered the poor girl; the evil spirit was either a manifestation of the spirit-deity of Bharatanatyam or of Bharatanatyam-related deities that she had messed with in her training or performances.

If one finds that difficult to swallow, there already a few personal testimonies on my web site, not on Bharatanatyam itself but on yoga and other New Age practices. A few more have come in from Ireland and the US [they are yet to be uploaded on the site] from ex-New Agers who are now into Catholic ministry to expose New Age; one of them speaks on Catholic Answers Live Radio and on EWTN and she frequently refers to my ministry, giving out my email address and web site address.

Check out this personal testimony sent to me after I gave a seminar on New Age near Pune:


I have a relative who is into deliverance ministry along with and since the time of Fr. John Hoey who was doing deliverance in charismatic ministry in Calcutta in the latter part of the 1970s.

From her experience, this relative concurs about the grave danger that Catholics are exposed to if they participate of food offered to idols [prasad], in Bharatanatyam, doing poojas at temples, etc.

St. Paul’s teaching on Christians’ being “all things to all men” does not give licence to believers to participate in pagan rituals, no matter what some liberal or modernist interpretations might say.

I prefer to reflect on our ‘jealous’ God’s many warnings to His Chosen People especially in the Old Testament books of Exodus and Deuteronomy. He wanted the people of Israel to maintain not their racial purity but their spiritual purity. He knew that undue interest by the Israelites in the religious activities of the neighbouring tribes would lead to the assimilation of their rituals, practices and even their gods, and to monumental disaster; and this is exactly what happened several times over.

you will be lured into following them*. Do not inquire regarding their gods, ‘How did these nations worship their gods? I, too, would do the same’.” Deuteronomy 12:30, New American Bible

*The New Jerusalem Bible: “Beware of being entrapped into copying them.

Whenever that passage comes to my mind, I always think that God was saying “Do not EVEN inquire regarding their gods.

But the Philippines’ Bishops’ Conference’s Community Bible translation reads as “Do not look at their gods, saying...

The Knox Translation, Catholic, 1955, reads “Do not hanker after their observances.

Since God does not change and truth does not change -- though the ‘father of lies’ manifests his evil designs in different disguises and through different means according to the times to deceive those people of God who are unwary -- do not God’s warnings hold true even today?

INCULTURATION, INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE and ECUMENISM are good things, tools that if used properly by the Church can witness to Jesus Christ [Jn. 14:6, Mt. 28: 19, 20] and to herald God’s Kingdom on earth but sadly they are being badly misused by priests and Bishops themselves.

The aberrations in the use of these three post-Vatican II evangelistic tools will be analysed in forthcoming articles on this site.
To return to the question of the potential adverse effects of Bharatanatyam on Catholic performers, I am reproducing an article titled “Intercession? Meeting and pleading in His Name!” by Fr. Rufus Pereira published in the April 2006 issue of CHARISINDIA, the monthly magazine of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal in India. He is the president of the International Association for Deliverance [IAD] & vice-president of the Association of Exorcists International [AIE], both approved by Rome.

[The secretary for the English speaking members of the AIE who is also secretary general of the IAD -- and who is in constant communication with me -- also endorses the views expressed here.]

I am also providing similar information from a book on Deliverance by Fr. Francis MacNutt.

Following those, I am copying a letter related to the CHARISINDIA article and MacNutt’s book.

The letter is addressed to Fr. Rufus Pereira and two senior leaders of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal, after which one can read my comments on the entire issue.
1. Intercession? Meeting and pleading in His Name! by Fr. Rufus Pereira, CHARISINDIA editorial April 2006

The third National Catholic Charismatic Convention in October 1978 at St. Peter’s Church grounds in Bandra, Mumbai, on the theme 'Behold, I make all things new' was followed by a three-day Seminar on the Ministry of Healing in the hall of the same church conducted by the same 12 member team from the USA, headed by Francis MacNutt.

On arriving at the church in the early morning of the first day of the Seminar, I was met by Sr. Mary Usha SND of Patna who was very much involved in the ministry of Inner Healing. She told me that as she was praying over a teenage girl from Malad, the girl was apparently 'slain' in the spirit or, to use a more acceptable term, the girl began resting in the spirit.

All her efforts however during the last 20 minutes to bring the girl back to consciousness had proved fruitless. She was now quite worried and asked me to help her. I managed to revive the girl but cautioned Sister to be first reasonably sure of the girl’s problem or burden before praying for her again.

The next morning, the second day of the Healing Seminar, Sr. Usha was waiting for me again at the entrance of St. Peter’s Church. She admitted rather sheepishly that she had prayed again early that morning for the girl who was once more 'slain' in the spirit and was now in this 'unconscious' state for already an hour. All efforts to revive her had been in vain. Sister expressed her regret for not having taken my advice seriously, for she thought, as she put it, that she knew as much about the healing ministry as I did. After giving her gently a piece of my mind, I accompanied her to the sacristy of the church where the girl was laid upon a long table in the waiting room. As I was about to start bringing her back to consciousness, I noticed to my astonishment that her whole body was in a position that resembled in every detail the figure of a dancing deity that I had often seen in calendar pictures. I asked her parents whether their daughter had been attending certain dancing classes or had been visiting certain shrines, but there seemed to be no indication of what could possibly be the cause or reason of this strange phenomenon.

Then it suddenly occurred to me that the 12 member team from the USA that had come to speak and minister at the Convention, the Healing Seminar, and the two priests’ retreats in Mumbai and in Kerala, should observe this case that was weird even for me. 108.

They were indeed intrigued by what they saw, as I pointed out to them that even the veins of the hands and the eyelids of the girl so closely resembled the idol I had mentioned. I then explained how spirits manifest themselves in different ways according to various cultural and religious backgrounds. MacNutt took many photographs and referred to this case on pages 116-118 in his well-known practical manual 'Deliverance From Evil Spirits[: A Practical Manual]', published in 1995, and even reproduced the interview he had with me in Appendix 2, on pages 314, 315 at the end of the book.

I then bid them pray for the girl’s deliverance. They took turns one by one during the breaks throughout the day, praying over her using various methods or approaches. MacNutt himself prayed with the laying on of hands, while Fr. Matt Lynn SJ made use of the sacramental of blessed salt, which he always carried with him, and his twin brother Dennis Lynn preferred to use holy oil, which was always in his pocket. We from India also took turns praying for the girl’s deliverance, beginning with Fr. Jim Borst MHM who used his crucifix with the crown of sharp thorns for the purpose, and ending with myself, BUT NOTHING HAPPENED.

It was now getting close to 6:00 pm, the time for all of us to go to the grounds of Don Bosco, Matunga, for the healing service to be conducted by MacNutt and team. I managed to bring the girl back to consciousness just in time, after so many hours of her being in an apparent trance-like state. I apologized to the girl’s family for being apparently led down by the Catholic Church and the Charismatic Renewal and asked them to come and see me the next day BUT THEY DID NOT COME BACK. I heard later that they had taken their daughter to a psychiatrist and I felt sad that we had failed them.
About two months later I received a surprise visit by the same girl, accompanied by her mother and her uncle. They had in fact come to pray at Prarthanalaya i.e. the House of Prayer, which was run by Sisters, the Pious Disciples of the Divine Master. For when they heard that I was staying at the Clergy Home for old and retired priests next door, they dropped in just to pay me a courtesy Christmas visit. In answer to my query, they told me that their daughter was still under medical care. When I again apologized for our helplessness in not being able to have helped her, the mother requested me to pray for her daughter once more.

After what had happened twice during the Healing Seminar at St. Peter’s Church two months earlier, I was hesitant to have prayer made a third tome over the girl, lest she would perhaps be 'slain' in the spirit a third time and remain in that state maybe for hours much to my embarrassment and the puzzlement of the old and sickly priests of the Clergy Home.

Instead therefore of making a prayer of deliverance over her, I decided to make together with the family a prayer of intercession for her, asking the Lord to reveal to us by the power of the Spirit the root cause of the girl’s problem, through a word of knowledge, and the way of dealing with it, through a word of wisdom.

I specifically claimed the promise of Jesus, "When any two of you on earth agree about something you are praying for, my Father in heaven will do it for you," relying on his assurance "For whenever two or three of you come together in my name, I am there with you." (Mt 18:19, 20)

For my part, I started praying softly in tongues knowing too well from past experience that "When we are weak, the Spirit is there to help us. For example, when we do not know what to pray, the Spirit prays for us in ways that cannot be put into words. All our thoughts are known to God. He can understand what is in the mind of the Spirit as the Spirit prays for God’s people" (Romans 8:26) and being confident that "though there are some things that man cannot do, God can do anything" (Mark 10:27).
Suddenly the girl cried out, opening wide her eyes, "I now remember something very clearly which I feel I should tell you." Her mother had taken a job overseas in Kuwait since the family was in financial difficulties. She had entrusted this girl, her eldest daughter, who was then just 15 years old, with the responsibility of taking care of the house and of looking after her younger siblings. But whenever her mother would return home for her holiday break or work leave, she would find fault with the way her daughter managed the household affairs and brought up the younger children, instead of thanking and appreciating her for all that she had done even at the cost of her own studies and her own personal needs. That hurt her immensely and she often shed bitter tears in silent loneliness.

One day she went to a restaurant to buy some bread taking along her little baby brother. As she entered the restaurant, she saw on the opposite wall a calendar picture of a baby representing a popular deity. She became fascinated by it, and gazed fixedly at it, and said to herself, "I wish I could become like that baby, then I would not have to look after other children but instead others would care for and look after me." At that moment, I believe, some alien entity seemed to have entered into her. One should be careful and not jump to a simplistic conclusion e.g. that that 'deity' was connected with some demonic entity. Rather we can safely hold two fundamental principles of spiritual discernment and Christian living when confronted with such peculiar and perplexing cases.

Firstly, when we give to his children the honour which belongs only to God, their Father, and when we ascribe to creatures the power which belongs only to God, their creator, we are opening ourselves to the Enemy, the father of lies, who has been a Liar from the very beginning, and closing ourselves to the God of Truth.

Secondly, when we are so hurt and wounded that there is much resentment and unforgiveness in our hearts, we are making ourselves vulnerable to our Enemy, the father of hatred, who has been a Murderer from the very beginning, and shutting ourselves to the God of Love.

Once I heard all this, I helped her in a matter of a few moments of prayer together to open her mind to God’s liberating truth and her heart to God’s forgiving love, keeping her focus not on a living creature but on the Lord and Giver of Life. 109.

Her otherwise clenched fists unlocked into palms of joyful surrender, her otherwise tightly closed lips opened into the sweetest of smiles and her otherwise firmly shut eyes opened into glances of sparkling radiance.

That was the end of her descent into the darkness of the Night and the beginning of her ascent into the light of the Dawn. Now all she asked and wanted was, in the words of that popular hymn, "to be like Jesus, not in a measure but in its fullness, all through life journey from earth to glory."

I re-read Fr. Rufus Pereira’s article just now after at least two or three years. Also, I read it only after writing my comments on pages 107, 108. But the reader will find that the words used by me […truth does not change -- though the ‘father of lies’…] to express my thoughts are similar to the words used by Fr. Rufus Pereira in the third from last paragraph on page 109.

Fr. Rufus Pereira has given the page numbers of Francis MacNutt’s book that he referred to. But, the page numbers differ in different print editions including the copy that I have in my library.

Francis MacNutt O.P. was an ordained priest in the Dominican order. He was one of the earliest and probably the most well-known charismatic priests from overseas to minister in India. His several books on Healing and on Deliverance are classics. In 1993 he asked for a dispensation [laicization] from the Holy See to get married. He and his wife Judith continue to be in Catholic ministry.

In my early days in the Renewal in Delhi, in the latter ‘80s to be precise, I got to meet and even minister with two persons mentioned in Fr. Rufus’ story - Fr. Jim Borst MHM and Sr. Mary Usha SND.

Fr. Jim continued to write to me even after I came to Madras, now Chennai. I have also attended a retreat by Sr. Usha in Chennai in the late 90s and been ministered to by her in Bangalore in 2001.
2.1a Deliverance From Evil Spirits: A Practical Manual by Francis MacNutt, pg 281-282

My* very first case of deliverance took place on the 7th of March, 1976. It happened during a prayer meeting held in Bombay where between two hundred and three hundred people were present and we were on our break time. Suddenly we heard a shout and screaming, and we all went over to see what was happening. I saw there a young girl on a chair who was screeching and flinging her arms all about. I asked someone what was happening and was told that she was possessed. It was the first time I had ever met such a person, said to be possessed. *Fr. Rufus Pereira

Something inside of me inspired me to say, "I command you in the name of Jesus to leave her." At that very moment she stopped doing all those things; her eyes opened and she gave me a beautiful smile. I absolutely didn't know what I was doing! Later she told me how for ten years she had been afflicted by evil spirits and that she had been going to a Muslim shrine, but now she felt freed.

In the two years since that time I have prayed for between four hundred and five hundred cases of deliverance. About one third of these were deliverances from so-called Hindu gods and goddesses.

I have been led to believe from my experiences that many of these gods and goddesses in Hindu mythology are nothing other than demons. The reason I think this is that in a third of the cases, when we asked the demons to identify themselves, they gave their names as Hindu gods or goddesses. On one occasion a woman even gave me the name of Krishna, which was a shock to me. (I'm not saying that Krishna is a demon; I'm just saying that in this one woman who was brought before the cross, the spirit identified itself as Krishna.)

There are certain gods and goddesses who turn up frequently in these cases of deliverance. One in particular is a god called Andarvar**. He's a god who, according to popular belief, is a very evil spirit who possesses women; he's very lustful and wants to rape women. These afflicted women actually experience this god coming during the night time and raping them. They all say it's not a dream. They say it was as if they were awake. Speaking to their husbands, I have been led to believe that what they say may be true.

Another thing I would like to share with you is that many people get possessed on the festival days of these gods and goddesses. My own cousin was an officer in the army many, many years ago. He went out on a Hindu festival day, and when he came back he fell sick with a fever - the doctors could not diagnose it - and within a week's time he died. Another cousin also died in the same mysterious circumstances. (My mother used to warn us when we were small never to go out of the house on the day of Hindu festivals.)

I've also found that in many cases of possession, the attacks of the evil spirit become far more intense on festival days. **Probably 'Andavar', the Tamil word for 'Lord' as in 'Jesuve Andavar' or 'Jesus is Lord'.
2.1b Story of dancing women, Deliverance From Evil Spirits, 1995, 2009 pg 282-283, 286.

Q: Can you share something about the dancing god that was inhabiting the young woman whom you showed us stretched out in a dancing posture during last week’s conference?

A: [Fr. Rufus Pereira:] Yes. We had at least five cases of possession by Hindu gods and goddesses during the last three days of the national convention, and I made it a point to ask the members of your team to come and gather firsthand knowledge of what takes place in these cases. You will remember what she looked like: The girl was taking on the poses of the Hindu god who is called Lataranjan***- the dancing god. (This dancing god is an aspect of the god Shiva) ***MacNutt got the spelling wrong. It is NATARAJA

In Hindu mythology Krishna is one of the three main deities and is a benevolent being, very different from Kali, who is malevolent.

In Western literature we find such sexual demons, too. Those who take the male sexual role are incubi, from the Latin meaning "the one who lies on top" while their female counterparts are the succubi, from the Latin meaning "the one who lies underneath."

What is really remarkable is that this girl knows nothing about Indian dancing. She is actually in many ways alien to Indian culture because she was brought up in a Western culture home. Yet here she was, taking the absolutely correct dancing poses in her fingers, her wrists, her hands and her feet- the exact poses of this very god. … Even her face-her eyes and mouth-were all changed into the features of this Hindu god.

After commanding the spirit to identify itself, I found that it got into her because of a spell cast by a Hindu doctor (who perhaps had lustful motives when he was treating her). Probably he called upon his favourite god, who happened to be Lataranjan*, to possess her so that he could gain power over her. *NATARAJA
Another fascinating case came to light during the second day of our healing seminar when a college girl told me that when she was a young girl, she went to a Hindu temple and there observed the image of a god with six hands - it’s called Mahakali. It is the most terrible goddess in Hindu mythology, a goddess who is bloodthirsty and wants to kill. Hindus try to pacify this goddess by frequently offering human sacrifices, even in our own day.

Q: Is she the same as Kali, the one who appears in some of our movies that are set in India?

A: Yes, Kali. They call her Mahakali out of respect; it means "great Kali." Tens of thousands of people have been sacrificed in the past two hundred years to propitiate her.

This girl told me she went to the temple and saw this goddess there. Then one night during these days of conference she had a dream-she was half awake-and saw this goddess coming toward her. She described her as a huge, fat, ugly woman with big eyes and six hands coming to throttle her.

When we prayed for deliverance she started to suffocate and was tormented in her throat. Finally she could not speak at all; she became dumb. After prayer she was able to speak again, but the irritation in her throat remained. On the last day of the healing seminar, when she came forward and was anointed with the oil that you blessed, the irritation in her throat left immediately. She also felt, when the oil was applied to her forehead, a great sense of peace…

She told me that she now realizes she was afflicted because her grandfather-he’s supposed to be a Catholic-used to do this work of exorcism in his spare time through the power of a god called Hanuman. He’s the monkey god, very popular in India. He would free a person through Hanuman’s help and then transfer the spell somewhere else. He would say to the spirit, "Now go on the road, and let the first person who comes your way come under your spell." She was telling me that her grandfather had hurt many people that way, and that’s why all this backlash has come into her whole family. She further told me that her father has been getting up every night during the past month screaming that someone was choking him. Anyone who stays overnight at their home also feels someone choking them.

In this preview, one can read selected pages of MacNutt’s book

3a. Framing a Christian Response to New Age Practices: Core Issues and Pastoral Solutions March 8, 2004 EXTRACT

Dr Gareth Leyshon, St John’s Seminary, Wonersh, Guildford GU5 0QX Tel.: +44 (0) 1483 892 701

Mobile: +44 (0) 7944 536 511 Email: see website

66 Fr Rufus Pereira, from India, is an acknowledged expert in the field of healing and deliverance and is the President of the International Association of Exorcists, a Vatican approved body.67

He notes that the national committee responsible for charismatic renewal in the Catholic Church in India concluded that: "on the one hand, the emotional and spiritual elements of yoga need to be avoided: at times they can even be diabolic and make us vulnerable to the forces of evil. Nevertheless, the purely practical aspects of yoga [explained later in his article as breathing exercises and bodily postures] can be accepted as long as they are deliberately placed under the Lordship of Jesus**."68 **See page 112

68 Interview with Fr Rufus Pereira in: F. MacNutt, Deliverance from Evil Spirits, 286.  
3b. Christians and Kundalini – A Bibliography

MacNutt, Francis Deliverance from Evil Spirits - A Practical Manual, Chosen Books, 1999, pp 281-288.  Interview with Fr. Rufus Pereira in Appendix 2 on pages 281-288 describes Fr. Pereira's ministry in India to several people who are oppressed with spirits after involvement with Hinduism and Transcendental Meditation (TM). 111.

Read MacNutt’s book for affliction/possession by evil spirits resulting from involvement with Hinduism and Transcendental Meditation
**3a. continued.

I have heard it claimed that certain positions adopted in yoga or martial arts of themselves amount to worship of other gods. Is it possible to worship an entity unknowingly? Certainly there can be no culpability involved in actions carried out in ignorance. Sacramental theology requires both form and matter for a sacrament to be effected: the right words as well as the right action. By extension, is a conscious intention required for an action to constitute worship of a false god? To practice yoga or a martial art while not believing that there is a sprit responsible for its efficacy is clearly NOT a breach of Principle B. Whether it bears bad witness (G) depends on the culture which observes Christians participating. Only in a culture where observers identify the postures as worship per se is this problematic.

Subtly different is the question of whether a certain yoga position is associated with belief in prana and the existence of certain energy flow points (chakras) on the human body. A particular posture may have significance in a chakra system, and be empirically known to be conducive to prayer or meditation. To adopt the position when taught it in good faith as a meditation posture is not problematic. But to adopt it as a consequence of believing in the chakra system, may constitute an attempt to manipulate occult powers. Even in Catholic liturgy, symbolic meanings have become attached to originally practical actions: washing the hands after gifts of vegetables have been received becomes spiritual purification, the sweat protecting neck-cloth (amice) becomes the helmet of salvation. Conscious adoption of the symbolic meaning is required for the symbol to have potency; otherwise the action is purely pragmatic. Thus origin in a chakra/prana system only seems significant when a technique is used with the intention of exploiting prana.

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