I want to be clear here...I am not a legalist Christian who believes everything is satanic, and every issue we have is due to a demon. In fact I do believe that there is a lot of charlatans out there who make big money "exorcising demons" who were never really there. However, I believe that if your a true Bible believing Christian, you need to consider what type of values this and other similar games are teaching your child. Not to mention the occult symbolism that is rampant in the cartoon and game. At the very least it's not God honoring, and at could lead a child's curiosity about the occult down a dark and dreary road. Occult themes are all over the TV, movies, in most of the top selling video games, and becoming the everyday norm with our kids. Just look at the t-shirts that glorify death with the occultic deaths head skull everywhere you go. If you don't get out much, just look at the ads at Kohls, JC Penny, Sears or any store that sells teen clothing.
Before you read the article, I want to make a disclaimer to non-believers: This blog is intended for believers in Jesus Christ to wake up. If you have stumbled upon this post and are not a believer; A) You are welcome here anytime, and if you don't know the Gospel, please see the links above or email me. B) I do not expect you to understand why Christians see the occult as evil. I do understand how you would think that what we call "dark" or "evil" in entertainment is normal if you do not believe in Christ. I used to believe the same way. In fact, many professed Christians would agree with you, and that is my target audience.
To the Christian parent: I understand this can be a "grey" area for the Christian. I don't think you or your child are Hell bound if you own Bakugans, or listen to secular music, or watch movies based on the occult. I do however believe that we as believers can do better, and my prayer is that once you understand what scripture says about these things that you may find better choices for you and your child's entertainment. If, once you understand that God hates what the occult stands for and you choose to continue making it a steady diet of your free time, then I would say there is cause for concern and would suggest examining yourself to see if you are truly in the faith.
Please see this article on unconscious learning as well as other articles from Berit Kjos on this subject. You can also click on the label: Occult below for other posts.
Thank you, and now on with the article...
The Rising Darkness in Children's Games
Training kids to love evil more than good
By Berit Kjos - October 22, 2009
Background information: Toying with Death
“Spiritual transformation... is mediated through a person's religious imagination." Lancaster Theological Seminary"I love anime. I will always love it.... I will not let anyone tell me that the things I hold dear are evil.""Satan is not simply trying to draw people to the dark side of a good versus evil conflict. Actually, he is trying to eradicate the gap between himself and God, between good and evil, altogether." Ray Yungen, A Time of Departing"Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness.... Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!" Isaiah 5:20-21
Don't play games with the occult! Ouija boards have always invited oppression, but they are far more likely to invoke unwanted "spirits" today. So is the new generation of occult games and videos.
I became aware of this change back in the nineties when a Canadian psychologist called me. He had read Under the Spell of Mother Earth and wanted to share some observations with me. In past years, he said, many women would come to scenic Alberta to do a Native American "Spirit Quest" in search of their personal "animal spirit." Few succeeded. But times have changed, and the "spirits" that now answer the summons are numerous as well as oppressive. Treating the scary symptoms as "multiple personality disorders" is no help at all.
In other words, popular occultism is spreading fast, and the "spirit world" has become increasingly more accessible. [See the reasons here] But few families are equipped to resist it. Contemporary churches offer little or no help. Most simply ignore the danger or endorse the "fun." To avoid offense, the word evil is dropped from their vocabulary.
The main victims of this blindness are children. Unless we teach them to recognize and resist these dangers, many will welcome the darkness. So let's examine the nature and tactics of this very real spiritual war. Bakugan -- a popular game and online anime (Japanese animation) -- is a useful example.
"One day," so the Bakugan story goes, "cards began to fall from the sky and were picked up by kids all over the world. The cards featured different characters, different environments, and different powers. ...these cards actually corresponded to an alternate world called Vestroia."
"...we invented a wicked new game we called Bakugan," explained the leader of Vestoria's young Battle Brawlers. "That's when the power of the cards was revealed. Each one held its own battling beast.... The battles were intense, and if you chose the wrong card, you lost it and the beast inside."
"...the beast inside!" Those words brought to mind some troubling email letters I've received from embattled teens and young adults. Like the Canadian women, they actually felt as if they had uncontrollable beasts inside. Their descriptions of inner battles -- the nightmarish consequences of obsession with occult role-playing games -- were heartbreaking. They couldn't stop playing -- or block out the frightening images planted in their minds! Nor could they find faithful Christians in their communities who would guide them toward freedom!
Too late, they discovered that the seductive journey into occult bondage is far smoother than the road back out to freedom. Yet, few see the dangers of the following progression:
1. Commanding supernatural power through the imagination.
2. Craving more dark thrills -- while increasingly bored with actual reality.
3. Suffering the mental, emotional and spiritual consequences of trusting the occult.
The Bible tells us that "the weapons of our warfare are... mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God." (2 Corinthians 10:4-5) Our main weapon, of course, is the "Sword of the Spirit, the Word of God." Our children need to know His Word, then exercise faith in His timeless guidelines. But those truths are fast fading from the public square, and deceptions -- more enticing, acceptable and pervasive than ever -- are filling the gap!
The weapons used by Bakugan warriors are totally contrary to God's ways. Based on the ancient Chinese force called Ch'i, they flow from the same source as every other occult weapon. Ch'i (or Ki, Prana, etc.) is merely the Eastern label for the spiritual forces once commanded by Canaanite sorcerers, Babylonian magicians, mediaeval alchemists, and secret societies throughout history.
Their magic is linked to the forcefulness of the human will. It involves mental concentration and firm commands that enable occultists to "cast spells" and "do magic" without hesitation or moral consideration.
Magic is easy, according to Wiccan author Starhawk, founder of the Covenant of the Goddess. All it takes is "four basic abilities: relaxation, concentration, visualization, and projection." The last step means projecting energy by moving one's mental images with the human will and imagination.
That's what Bakugan's anime fans learn to do: concentrate, visualize, and then project the power through their beast-filled balls or playing cards. [See picture at the top.] Starhawk described it well in her book on witchcraft: "To cast a spell is to project energy though a symbol."
To many Western occultists, that empowering "symbol" for invoking and transmitting demonic power is The Tarot (based on the Kabbalah) or other magical cards.
Today's entertainment makes such self-empowering rituals seem more normal than prayer. Young players are continually learning, then practicing, a new worldview -- one that either twists or rejects Biblical Christianity. It's not surprising that this process matches the Marxist formula for social change:
New information that challenges the old beliefs and values
+ practical experience using the new information
= PRAXIS: a transformational strategy based on continual reinforcement and experience.Together, the mystical images [implanted through the cards and anime] and the ritual actions [repeated again and again through the actual game] become a doorway to occult thinking. With the growing popularity of such thrills, many more children will trade God's truth for capricious powers that appeal to the lusts and ambitions of our fallen human nature.
No wonder these Scriptures have become a reality even in churches around the world:
The signs and symbols of magicNotice the tension between opposing powers in this description of Bakugan's cosmos:
"You love evil more than good...." Psalm 52:3
"They obeyed not... but walked every one in the imagination of their evil heart..." Jeremiah 11:8
"Vestroia is a vast dimension comprised of [six]... worlds: Fire, Earth, Light, Darkness, Water and Wind. At the very centre of this universe there are two opposing energy cores: THE INFINITY CORE, the source of all positive energy, and THE SILENT CORE, the source of all negative energy. Throughout history, these two opposing forces had maintained the balance of equilibrium..."Notice how this philosophy clashes with God's Truth: There is no balance or equilibrium between the eternal Kingdom of our holy God and Satan's temporary domain!
Yet two symbols illustrate the lie: the quartered circle and the yin yang. You may remember the "sacred circle" of Wiccan and Native American spirituality. Its four dividing lines point from the center to the "spirits" of the north, east, south, and west -- and to the four basic elements: fire, earth, water and wind (or air).
Those "spirits" are similar to Vestoria's spiritual domains. Their connections to China's blend of Taoism, Confucianism, Buddhism, and folk religions are described in An Encyclopedia of Religion:
"The eternal oscillation of yin and yang gives rise to the material universe through their Five Agents of Water, Fire, Wood, Metal, and Earth.... The religious movement flourishing from the first century B.C. to the fourth century A.D. ... involved divination, alchemy, and the belief in immortals..."Does that remind you of God's warning in Deuteronomy 18:9-14? It tells us to shun all those practices. Don't even imagine them!
"Taoism is a rich reservoir of superstitions. It has... incorporated and elaborated divination... fortune telling, witchcraft, astrology, communication with the dead, and many others.... [It ] relies on charms and magic formulas."
"You shall not learn to follow the abominations of those nations. There shall not be found among you anyone who ... practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. For all who do these things are an abomination to the Lord..."Eastern and Western occultism have mingled for at least two millennia. But what used to be a trickle has now become a flood. Even churches are welcoming the mysteries that secret societies and Taoist alchemists once hid so well.
"They... walked in the counsels and in the imagination of their evil heart..." Jeremiah 7:24
Westerners raised in a "safe" Christian culture tend to discount the source of these powers. America, like Europe, has conveniently shut its eyes to occult realities that faded from sight with the spread of Christianity. Now those dark realities are returning with a vengeance. [See "How the occult is changing the Church"]
Deceptive light and inconceivable darknessThe Bakugan universe is divided into six domains -- each represented by a corresponding symbol. These domains break down into three sets of yin-yang opposites: Fire and Earth, Light and Darkness, Water and Wind [or air]. Each has a corresponding symbol: Red for "Fire" and black for "Darkness." "Light" is linked to a white pentacle inside a circle. These three examples alone should raise concerns about the tempting values taught to young fans:
The six symbols are shown in a complex circular symbol similar to an image [pictured here] from a kabalistic Tarot card in a deck designed by the infamous occultist, Aleister Crowley. While Crowley's six discs have different meanings, both of these complex symbols [Bakugan's and Crowley's] place the six discs on the edges of a six-sided hexagon -- a shape common to kabalistic art.
Fire [Pyrus]: The Red Bakugan. "[Dan is] Obsessed with being the number one Bakugan Brawler in the world... His guardian Dragonoid (...Drago - pictured) is a force to be reckoned.... The Pyrus player will use every avenue open to them to crush you...."
Darkness: The Black Bakugan. "They thrive on battles hidden in the shadows, for this is where they draw their strength.... Once a Bakugan is sucked into the Doom Dimension, there is no coming back.... The bottom line is, Darkus is evil but fun."
Light [Haos]: The White Bakugan. "With this power, the Haos Bakugan have mastered the rare and unique ability to manipulate and control light and energy, leaving their opponents dazed and defeated."
Becoming like "god."
Aleister Crowley was called "the most evil man in the world." This founder of the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn defined magic as “the science and art of causing change to occur at will.”
Not God's! The following occult statement describes one of the most devious traps set by the evil one since the beginning of time:
"...unless you make yourself equal to God, you cannot understand God: for the like is not intelligible save to the like.... Believe that nothing is impossible for you.... Mount higher than the highest height; descend lower than the lowest depth. Draw into yourself all sensations of everything created, fire and water, dry and moist, imagining that you are everywhere, on earth, in the sea, in the sky."Remember what the serpent said to Eve in the garden after tempting her to eat the forbidden fruit:
It was a devious lie! Instead of making her like God, her sin banished her from His presence. By "knowing... evil" experientially, she became an unholy creature who could no longer walk in the presence of our holy God! Satan's lofty promise was actually deadly trap!
"You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil." Genesis 3:4-5
Lofty visions are among Satan's most useful tricks. At one point in the Bakugan myth, the evil Naga manages to "absorb" into himself an overwhelming amount of "negative energy." It caused a major "energy" crisis! As a result, the Battle Brawlers faced an assignment of cosmic proportions: "to restore peace throughout the universe!"
What an arrogant suggestion! Yet it supports what children are taught in public schools: it's up to them to save the planet, build unity in diversity, and counter the narrow views of their parents.In this fantasy world it makes sense for opposing sides -- good and evil -- to join hands in perfect harmony. Like the dialectic process that "frees" group members from Biblical authority and values, this devious message promotes an arrogance that matches the Old Testament description of Satan:
“How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!... For you have said in your heart: 'I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.... I will be like the Most High.’ Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, to the lowest depths of the Pit." Isaiah 14:12-15If we choose "other gods" and yield to Satan's temptations, we will surely face consequences. Ponder these warnings:
"They... walked in the counsels and in the imagination of their evil heart..." Jeremiah 7:24And what was it like "in the days of Noah"?
"...in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons...." 1 Timothy 4:1
"...each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death." James 1:14-15
"...as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man." Luke 17:26 [see End Times]
"...the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.... The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence." Genesis 6:5, 11What can parents do?
1. Pray for your children's protection, discernment, love for God, and rejection of evil. Pray that they heed God's warnings and memorize His Word.
2. Discuss this list of questions as a family (www.crossroad.to/charts/checklist.htm)
3. Memorize Scriptures together -- including this verse: "Father... not as I will, but as You will.” Matthew 26:39
4. "Put on" the armor of God. For --
"...we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day..." Ephesians 6:10-14
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God..." 2 Corinthians 10:4-5
"The Lord your God, who goes before you, He will fight for you..." Deuteronomy 1:30
Find comments on this article here: Ancient Secrets and the Occult
1. Lancaster Theological Seminary, USA, UMI Order number: AAM9822985 Dissertation Abstracts International Section A: Humanities & Social Sciences. 1998 Jul. 59 (1-A): p.0201.
2. A letter from a visitor. It represents the message of countless others.
3. Ray Yungen, A Time of Departing (Silverton, OR: Lighthouse Trails Publishing Company, 2002), page 101.
5. http://old.bakugan.com/en/universe/index.html [On the imbedded video]
6. See http://www.crossroad.to/Books/TwistofFaith/6-Confess.html#valerie and http://www.crossroad.to/Books/TwistofFaith/3-Kingdom.html (first illustration)
8. Starhawk, The Spiral Dance, (Harper & Row Publishers, 1979), p. 62, 124.
10. An Encyclopedia of Religion (New York, NY: The Philosophical Library, 1945), pp. 149, 154.
11. See these quotes and articles: "How the occult is changing the Church" at www.crossroad.to/Excerpts/warnings.htm
12. Index to all six symbols: http://www.bakugandojo.com/
13. The video shows the cards falling. Watch for the card with the six symbols surrounding a hexagon shape: http://old.bakugan.com/en/universe/index.html
14. James Wasserman, Art and Symbols of the Occult: Images of Power and Wisdom ( Rochester, Vermont: Destiny Books, 1993). p. 16. Read about the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn here:www.crossroad.to/Excerpts/books/lewis/inklings-williams.htm and www.crossroad.to/articles2/2003/occult-rpg.htm
15. Ibid., p. 59. Those occult words are attributed to Hermes Trismegistus (the Egyptian version of the ancient Greek messenger god, Hermes) who has been the symbolic idol of occult orders and secret societies through the ages.
For more on this and other topics, see archives.
First time here? Please read "Don't trust a word I say" in the archives, for details on the beliefs of this ministry.