Saturday, June 4, 2016

The Evolution of Roy Masters

RoyMasters (b. 1928) has hosted Advice Line since 1961!  Masters was born in London with the name Reuben Obermeister.  His Jewish family were diamond cutters.  According to Masters, "I lost all my relatives in the Holocaust."  In 1943, when Masters was just 15, his father died.  Masters did not attend college.

Masters served with the British Army during World War II.  He traveled to  Amsterdam, Brussels, Belgium, South Africa and the U.S. as a diamond cutter.  He hosted a daily radio show called "Story of Your Diamond" and soon traveled to nearly every state.  As a teen, before the war, Masters saw a vaudeville stage hypnotist and wondered why this technique could not be used to help people.

It's not very well known that Masters' teachings are heretical.  Walter Martin (d. 1989), who founded the Christian Research Institute in 1960, had a debate with Roy Masters (see the 4th & 5th entries).  Elsewhere, Martin boldly stated, 

The basic doctrines and many of the practices of Roy Masters and the Foundation of Human Understanding are decidedly not Christian.  They are certainly not in harmony with what God has revealed to us in the Bible.

LindaMethod has posted a number of videos on the potential dangers of Roy Masters' meditation exercise.  Let us know what you think >>

"But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good" (1 Thes.  5:21, NASB).


Daniel Smith said...

I listened to the 1980 debate between Roy Masters and Walter Martin. Despite that their differences in interpretation of scripture isn't insurmountable, Walter seemed unwilling to try and reconcile Roy Master's premise with his own. At times he came off as belligerent, and he even belittled a caller for slightly erring in her wording of a passage. Walter seemed happy to conclude that Roy's teaching is cultic, but he would not acknowledge the broader cultic nature of society through culture, including through its culture of established religion which is often poorly carried out. The only truly irrefutable discrepancy that Martin demonstrated about between Masters and tradition is that Masters in non-Trinitarian. I don't understand why that matters. The doctrine of the Trinity is not something our salvation depends on. It is arguably an extra scriptural doctrine. I fully accept it, but I'm happy to work with people who don't.

I am having ongoing discussions about Roy Masters with the woman who goes by the Youtube screen name of Linda Method.

There are certain concrete errors in the information presented on her channel, and I am working on clarifying those items with her. She does not view the assertions she makes in her videos as being relevant outside her experience as a practitioner of Roy Masters' meditation exercise. And I have suggested that she include this as a disclaimer on her channel.

I believe that Linda Method and I are making progress toward better delineating the difference between mystical (negative) understanding (of Roy Masters) and the positive understanding that is more prevalent in today's Christian churches. I think optimistically that this might also help also to reconcile the apparent breakdown between Roy Masters and Walter Martin.

Truth Seeker said...

Thanks for your thoughtful comments. You may be familiar with the current "Bible Answer Man," Hank Hanegraaff (I've heard him speak 2x). Here's CRI's take on Masters:

Romans 15:14 says that we are "capable of keeping each other on the right road" (Phillips). I am a big supporter of Biblical (Nouthetic) counseling:

As for the doctrine of the Trinity, it is very important (Mt. 3:16,17; Mt. 23:19; 2 Cor. 13:14; 1 Peter 1:2; Jude vv. 20,21). I highly recommend The Forgotten Trinity by James White:

In fact, theology does matter:

My focus for this blog is general Christian apologetics (Bart Ehrman, Mormons, etc.), but I especially zero in on a defense of creation (Creation Week, Global Flood, Young Earth). In truth, evolution is depressing:

Be sure to get my book showing how history and science favor a youthful world:

Kind Regards, Jay ╬

Daniel Smith said...

Truth Seeker, that CRI link is at least 25 years out of date as of today, Mar. 22, 2017. Masters subsequently clarified most of the questions regarding his authenticity as a Christian. And the claims of CRI do not stand. I personally heard him in the last year say that he calls himself a Christian and not a Jew for he loves Jesus more than all the other rabbis put together. His Open Letter to the Churches written in 1992 also clarifies much of the confusion. However, I am sure that for some people - who woukd rather strain out gnats than look at the heart - no amount of clarification will ever suffice.

Daniel Smith said...

The first passage above used to support the Trinity, Mt. 3:16-17, actually has God specifically addressing Jesus as his son. This shows that they are different, not one.

I accept the Trinity and find it a useful explanation of certain parts of the Bible that would otherwise be contradictory. However, many people don't get it and probably never will. And since a person's salvation does not depend on that understanding... well, given the state of the world's current moral decline, isn't it a poor choice for a point of division in the church?