The people who want to rule the world. “Gore has written openly about the Earth having sacred qualities and he has praised primitive pagan religions and goddess worship”. Christians might not be amused. An interesting read.
AL GORE, THE UNITED NATIONS,
AND THE CULT OF GAIA (1999)
By Cliff Kincaid, President, America’s Survival, Inc.
U.S. taxpayers are being forced to subsidize a new form of state religion which holds that natural resources have to be protected for the sake of Gaia, a so-called Earth spirit. This religious movement, which has cult-like qualities, is being promoted by leading figures and organizations such as Vice President Albert Gore, broadcaster Ted Turner, and the United Nations.
Gore, who as a member of the U.S. Senate participated in the 1992 U.N.-sponsored Earth Summit, is the most prominent member of what appears to be an environmental cult built around the concept of reverence for the Earth. Gore has written openly about the Earth having sacred qualities and he has praised primitive pagan religions and goddess worship.
Another key player is Ted Turner, who has turned his broadcasting empire into a virtual arm of the United Nations. A noted critic of Christianity and ambassador on behalf of the U.N. Population Fund, he promotes the concept of Gaia in his television programs, such as the “Captain Planet” cartoon show, in which characters get magic powers from an Earth spirit or goddess.
At the United Nations, the U.N. Environmental Program, founded by Maurice Strong, promotes the idea of an “Environmental Sabbath,” a variation of the Gaia concept. Strong, now the Executive Coordinator for United Nations Reform under Secretary-General Kofi Annan, has described the global environmental movement in terms suggesting a religious crusade. One of Strong’s organizations, the Earth Council, has produced an “Earth Charter” for the world that refers to respect for “Mother Earth” and animal rights.
As Turner’s involvement suggests, this Cult of Gaia has a definite anti-Christian orientation. Traditional Christianity is regarded by this movement as anti-environmental because God is viewed as being apart from the Earth itself.
Those promoting the Gaia concept have no qualms about using the full force of government, even the international resources of the United Nations, to impose their beliefs on the rest of us. If they are successful in their drive for “sustainable development” to protect Gaia, they could stifle economic growth and promote a drastic decline in the American standard of living.
Congressional hearings are urgently needed to explore whether forced U.S. taxpayer underwriting of this bizarre religious movement constitutes a violation of the First Amendment prohibition on the establishment of a state church.
The nation was shocked when 39 members of the Heaven’s Gate cult killed themselves. It was the largest mass suicide in U.S. history. But are there other cults active behind-the-scenes of world events? And might they be occupying positions of power at the national and international levels? The answers, upon analysis and reflection, are very disturbing. There appears to be a high-level movement with very strange spiritual beliefs operating in the upper echelons of the U.S. Government, the United Nations and the global media.
These people believe in Gaia — an “Earth spirit,” goddess or planetary brain — and they think that human beings can have mystical experiences or a spiritual relationship with this entity. In order to protect Gaia, in their view, the U.S. and other industrial countries have to be prohibited from certain uses of the world’s natural resources. This is called “sustainable development.”
In general and secular terms, this cult, which combines aspects of the animal rights and radical environmentalist movements, holds that human beings are exploiting the Earth and other living creatures for selfish purposes.
But the religious overtones of this movement are too obvious to ignore. Rep. Helen Chenoweth (R-Idaho) has described this phenomenon as “environmental religion” and says that it has “profound constitutional implications” because of the First Amendment prohibition on government establishment of religion. Columnist Alston Chase, a reformed environmentalist, agrees, warning that “It may be only a matter of time before America becomes a complete theocracy — a place where, in the name of environmentalism, science and religion fuse with civil authority to rule the populace.”1
Dr. Michael S. Coffman, president of Environmental Perspectives, says, “They are instituting a new state religion.” But it is a religion at sharp variance with the Judeo-Christian foundations of the American constitutional republic. A document mandated by the U.N.-sponsored Convention on Biological Diversity, the Global Biodiversity Assessment, explicitly refers to Christianity as a faith that has set humans “apart from nature,” a process in which nature has “lost its sacred qualities.” The document states:
|Conversion to Christianity has therefore meant an abandonment of an affinity with the natural world for many forest dwellers, peasants, fishers all over the world…The northeastern hilly states of India bordering China and Myanmar supported small scale, largely autonomous shifting cultivator societies [until the] 1950’s. These people followed their own religious traditions that included setting part between 10% and 30% of the landscape as sacred groves and ponds.2
On the other hand, this U.N. document asserts that the eastern religious traditions such as Buddhism and Hinduism “did not depart as drastically from the perspective of humans as members of a community of beings including other living and non-living elements.” Thus, the U.N. favors non-Christian religions as faithful stewards of the Earth.
In fact, the key difference between Christianity and these Eastern religions is the role played by Jesus Christ. Christianity holds that there is a gulf between God and man that is breached by Christ. Christianity teaches that man is distant from and radically different than God, and that atonement or mediation is achieved through Christ, who rose from the dead.
By contrast, the philosophy of Gaia holds that nature is God, and that by experiencing or even worshipping nature, humans can attain oneness with God. Some followers of Gaia believe that humans, after death, are reincarnated into non-human forms.
This decidedly unscientific, even bizarre, view of the environment appears to be driving U.S. and U.N. environmental policies, including locking up or restricting development on huge areas of U.S. lands, and making it more expensive to produce or use our natural resources. Science, technology and industrial development are regarded as anathema to the followers of the Gaia philosophy.
Under President Clinton and Vice President Gore, who is recognized as the driving force behind the administration’s environmental agenda, the American people have witnessed rather extraordinary actions designed to stop economic development. First, Clinton complied with U.N. demands to cancel a mining project outside Yellowstone Park. The mining complex, which would have produced gold and copper, was planned to operate for 12 years and would have employed approximately 175 individuals on a year-round basis.
Clinton then designated 1.7 million acres of land in southwest Utah as a national monument, placing it off limits to development. This area reportedly contains billions of barrels of oil, minerals and tens of billions of tons of low sulfur clean-burning coal. It could have produced thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in revenue for the state and federal governments.
American “energy independence,” once a realistic policy option, looks increasingly like a pipe dream. U.S. Department of Energy figures show U.S. dependence on foreign oil rising from 50 to 80 percent by the year 2010. This makes the U.S. vulnerable to the actions of foreign countries, some of them openly hostile, laying the groundwork for another Persian Gulf-type war.
International trade has been another factor driving up U.S. dependence on foreign oil. It is also a source of the pollution that the environmentalists claim to be concerned about.
In this context, the World Trade Organization (WTO) has been established to assist in the expansion of international trade while James Gustave Speth, administrator of the U.N. Development Program, has endorsed the concept of a World Environmental Organization (WEO) under U.N. auspices to regulate such trade. Speth sees the WTO as a stepping stone to his WEO. Thus, “free trade,” conducted under the management of the WTO, will lay the groundwork for the WEO to regulate it for environmental purposes. This is the U.N. plan as Speth sees it. Top U.N. official Maurice Strong reportedly agrees with this scenario.
Climate Change Treaty
With international trade and energy use rising, another U.N. initiative, a global climate change treaty, takes on more urgency. A major U.N. campaign is underway to impose further restrictions on the use of fossil fuels in some industrial countries to fight the “global warming” that is said to result. The U.N. is sponsoring a December meeting in Kyoto, Japan, where a new treaty is expected to be hammered out.
Here, too, a preoccupation with Gaia seems to be driving some of the concern. Dr. Stephen H. Schneider, a climatologist with the National Center for Atmospheric Research, cites the Gaia theory several times in his own book on global warming, asking “…is there a Goddess of the Earth?” He adds, “This is not a fanciful question, but one that has spurred a major debate over what has been called the Gaia hypothesis.”
Schneider, whose book included endorsements from then-Senator Al Gore and then-Senator Tim Wirth (now Undersecretary of State for Global Affairs), didn’t come to any firm conclusions. However, he argued that even if the planet is a self-regulating organism, as the Gaia concept suggests, this force alone will not be sufficient to immediately negate the impact of humans on the environment and that human activity will, therefore, have to be restrained in some way.3
In other words, the industrial and economic activities of human beings will still have to be controlled for the benefit of Gaia. By whom? The United Nations, working in tandem with federal agencies and commissions.
However, a key problem with the proposed climate change treaty is the decision which has already been made by the Clinton administration to allow so-called developing countries such as Communist China to escape limits on the discharge of the so-called “greenhouse gasses” which are blamed for global warming. Will the U.S. Senate approve such a treaty?
Membership in what can be termed the Cult of Gaia should be understood in a loose sense because there is no evidence that Gore, Strong and others belong to a formal organization. Moreover, this movement is not a cult in the sense that there is one strong central human figure or leader. But a cult can also suggest the experience of a form of “awakening” which drives a person to have a fanatical devotion to a cause.
William D. Dinges, associate professor of religion and religious education at The Catholic University of America, points out that, in the case of the Heaven’s Gate group, it was “composed of people who assume they have some knowledge of something not available to others.” They thought they had inside information about the nature of life on Earth and the end of the world.
Those involved in the Cult of Gaia have a similar mentality. They believe in a form of spiritual planetary consciousness. In their minds, it is no less spiritual than the “born-again” experience of some Christians. However, some Christians believe that what followers of Gaia are experiencing is actually a “demonic” spirit.4
On the liberal-left side of the political spectrum, devotion or even worship of Gaia is becoming more popular. In their book, Spiritual Politics, Corrine McLaughlin and Gordon Davidson write:
|God Imminent, the Divinity within all life, is today becoming more widely recognized in the new spiritual, ecological, and feminist movements that are working to empower the individual, support human rights, and honor the sacredness of the Earth as Gaia, the ancient Mother Goddess.5
In the book, which is endorsed by Noel Brown of the U.N. Environmental Program, McLaughlin and Davidson write about the Meditation Room in U.N. headquarters, describing it as “the focus for the energies of a unified planet and humanity, and for right relations among all kingdoms of life.” Critics describe this room as a “pagan temple.” However, it is not known for sure if Gaia worship takes place there.
The ties between feminism and ecology have been noted by Russell Chandler, former religion writer for The Los Angeles Times, who explains:
Nature-based religion, particularly that of the Goddess of Wicca (or “witchcraft”) is strong within the New Age strand often referred to as “eco-feminism.”6