Why are so many New Agers converting to Christianity?

There’s a noticeable trend that’s been building over the last several years of card-carrying New Agers converting to Christianity. Perhaps one of the first and most notable converts was angel card queen Doreen Virtue, who in 2017 disavowed her former claim to fame in order to be baptized as a born again follower of Jesus. She then encouraged her massive following to do the same.

Why are so many New Agers converting to Christianity?

And not just any type of christianity, but Evangelical Christianity? At first glance it would seem that the beliefs behind the two are wholly different, but I beg to differ.

I was raised in the Bible Belt as an Evangelical Christian and warned in church about the threat of New Age beliefs.

My grandfather on my mother’s side was a Southern Baptist minister. My grandfather on my father’s side was a Southern Baptist church deacon and Sunday school teacher. My entire childhood, my family attended a General Baptist church every Sunday morning, evening, and even on Wednesday nights. My father eventually, after I was an adult, broke away and started his own church following more charismatic Christian ideals like speaking in tongues and faith healing.

The things I was taught in church included black people being made slaves as a punishment by God for being the descendants of Ham, the Antichrist was either Barack Obama or a New Age guru, and while they were directly spoken of from the pulpit, anti-government conspiracy theories were very much a theme of discussion in the adult circles.

Having been raised an Evangelical Christian and then later studying New Age beliefs in depth, it was very easy for me to see the overlap. There are so many familiar concepts in popular New Age beliefs that I recognize from my childhood days sitting in church.

Why are New Age beliefs similar to Christianity?

On the surface, it seems like it would be impossible for New Age spirituality, which is mostly derived from a mish mosh of Eastern spiritual beliefs like Hinduism, Tantra, Daoism, and Buddhism, to have anything in common with an Abrahamic religion like Christianity.

New Ageism largely evolved in Western countries (mainly the United States and Britain) which are individualist cultures. The teachings within New Ageism were mostly co opted from religious traditions of Eastern origin, which evolved within collectivist cultures.

There’s a fundamental and foundational difference in values systems, ways of being and thinking between individualism and collectivism. They exist on opposing ends of a spectrum. When Eastern spirituality is filtered through the individualist lens of a Western values system, it fundamentally alters how these teachings are interpreted and understood, and often results in a completely different system of beliefs from where they originated.

I touch on this in my interview with Grifty Pod, which you can listen to here.

Learn about the difference between individualism and collectivism.

But here’s the kicker: most of New Age spirituality actually evolved out of Christianity in some form.

Many of the beliefs and philosophies prevalent in New Age circles came out of the New Thought movement, mixed with various occult and Western esoteric movements between the 1600s and 1800s which in turn, came from explorations of so-called mystery school teachings founded on ideas prevalent within Abrahamic religions like Gnostic Christianity which is still centrally focused on Jesus, as well as the Kabbalah.

This is largely why Jesus is still a prominent figure in the New Age mythos. Here, Jesus is the embodiment of “Christ Consciousness”, which is considered the pinnacle of fully actualized human potential.

In other words, New Age spirituality actually branched off from Western Christianity as its adherents intermingled with Eastern spirituality.

How do New Age beliefs overlap with Evangelical Christianity?

Jesus as the Christ

The New Age belief in concepts of awakening as the return of Christ Consciousness and ascension are not dissimilar to the Evangelical notions of the rapture, Jesus returning to earth and “heaven on earth.” They’re basically the same thing, but the Evangelical version is a little more literal while the New Age version is more metaphorical.

Supernatural Entities

Both have a belief in supernatural beings that exist outside of the earth plane. In Evangelical Christianity, they’re angels and demons, whereas in New Age they’re spirit guides, sometimes also angels (a’la Doreen), negative entity attachments or some similar galactic entity.

The Chosen Few

Both New Age spirituality and Evangelical Christianity encourage spiritual narcissism, mainly because Western culture itself is highly narcissistic. In Evangelism this is usually plays out in a sense of being special and morally superior because you’re one of God’s chosen few. In New Ageism it’s because you’re more conscious than everyone else. In either case, it’s a “holier than thou” or “more enlightened than thou” attitude.

Read my article on Spiritual Narcissism.

Purity Culture

Purity culture is another huge aspect of both New Age spirituality and Evangelical Christianity. New Age focuses on purity of body and mind based on controlling what you eat, who you have sex with, and what you think, hence its prevalence in the wellness industry. Evangelicism is focused on purity of body and spirit based on controlling the information you engage with, when, how, and who you have sex with, as well as policing your own thoughts.

Prosperity Gospel

Both New Age and Evangelicism are heavily focused on prosperity gospel – the reward one reaps for being pure. In New Age, your purity of thoughts reward you via the Law of Attraction, in Evangelicism it’s God who rewards you for being faithful and loyal.

A Supreme Being

In addition to Jesus, both have a belief in a supreme intelligence. For Evangelicals it’s God the Father, and for New Agers its Source. In both instances, “Christ” is a representation of a physical embodiment of God/source on earth.

Traditional Gender Roles

Both New Age and Evangelical Christianity place a great emphasis on traditional gender and sex constructs. In Christianity it’s fairly obvious: marriage is the union of one man and one woman, homosexuality and transgender are abominations, and women are to obey their husbands. Polarity doctrine, the New Age interpretation of Tantra, is also heavily centered on traditional constructs around gender, it’s just viewed through an idealized “energetic” lens: embodying the divine feminine and the divine masculine.

Read my article on repackaged patriarchy in the New Age.

An Unhealthy Fascination With Anti-Government Conspiracy Theories

Both New Age spirituality and Evangelical Christanity, particularly those with Christian Nationalist and Christian Dominionist undertones are very, very enraptured by anti-government sentiments and particularly drawn to conspiracy theories. It’s the reason why so many yogis, new agers, and Christian Nationalists converged under the banner of Trump and ended up launching an all out attack on the U.S. capitol alongside Neo Nazis on January 6th. QAnon was the vehicle for bringing them all together.

Read my article on how QAnon infected the spiritual and wellness community.

New Age beliefs and Evangelical Christianity can both be cults.

Both New Age spirituality and Evangelical Christianity exhibit elements of high-control groups and certain pockets can be flat out considered cults. Obviously various groups within each may exist somewhere on a spectrum of control, but many fit cult expert Steven Hassan’s BITE model of authoritarian control.

I can say that each of the four elements is common in evangelical subculture, if not in the most extreme forms. Certainly, evangelicalism encourages black and white, good vs. evil thinking, teaches that it has the only and absolute truth, and turns other sources of information into outsider doctrines. Often your access to information is not directly restricted by a church or, if you’re a child, how much your parents restrict your access to non-evangelical/fundamentalist reading material varies widely. But the insistence on positivity and the desire to control and curtail emotions is also present, and even if, for many evangelicals, it’s perfectly fine to leave one particular church and join another, if you stop believing in things like biblical inerrancy and/or break with right-wing politics, you will be seen as out of the fold and “brainwashed.”


Some evangelicals practice shunning; as a rule, evangelicals do not respect others’ boundaries, so that, even if families and church friends don’t directly shun or “ghost” on “rebellious” members, interactions with them may become unbearable, because they try to bring you back in. They try to control the narrative of your life–if you leave the faith, you were “never saved” in the first place, for example. As a result, some people who leave evangelicalism have to cut off contact with their evangelical family members for their own mental health if the family has not cut them off.



It goes without saying that New Age cults employ all of the same tactics and many New Age practices, whether they are a part of an actual cult or not, are mind control techniques that tick off many of the bullets of the behavioral, thought, informational and emotional control boxes on the BITE model, such as the heavy emphasis on toxic positivity in New Age spiritual circles.

It’s not uncommon for people coming out of a high control group to fall right into another one. What feels familiar is often what feels safe, and with all of the overlap between New Age and Christian beliefs, naturally it becomes easy to feel comfortably familiar in something that promises to be new and different, but is in fact just the same old control tactics, repackaged.

25 Signs You’re in a Cult

The Crunchy-to-Alt-Right Pipeline, a.k.a the Wellness-to-White-Supremacy Pipeline, and the KKKult of White Supremacy

I already touched on this above in the segment on anti-government conspiracy theories, but it bears some additional unpacking. The mass exodus from New Age circles into Evangelical Christianity is just the next step on the wellness-to-white-supremacy pipeline.

Read my articles mapping out the wellness-to-white-supremacy pipeline and how white supremacy shows up in New Age spirituality.

For former New Agers, Evangelical Christianity is the gateway into Christian Nationalism. Remember in the beginning of this article where I mentioned that I sat through sermons suggesting that black people being made slaves as a punishment by God for being the descendants of Ham?

What a lot of people don’t realize is that the second iteration of the KKK was as a religious cult founded in Georgia by a Christian minister named William Joseph Simmons.

“Without confession of the sin of white racism, white supremacy, white privilege,” the Rev. Jim Wallis, founder of the progressive Christian group Sojourners, said, “people who call themselves white Christians will never be free.”


Wallis didn’t refer directly to the Klan, which had terrorized black people during Reconstruction before being dismantled by President Ulysses S. Grant. It was “born again” that night in 1915 on Stone Mountain, and Christianity was used to justify a second wave of terror.


Restricting membership to white Christians, the Klan wore white robes to symbolize “purity,” burned crosses to signify “the Light of Christ” and picked selective scriptures from the Bible to preach white supremacy. The Invisible Empire’s comeback was aided by Hollywood’s first blockbuster, D.W. Griffith’s “The Birth of a Nation,” which glamorized the Klan.


By the early 1920s, the Klan boasted 5 million members across the country and had infiltrated thousands of churches with its hateful doctrines.


Many ministers in Protestant denominations would openly declare their membership in the Klan. And creepy photos would capture Klan members in white hoods standing in churches and sitting in choir pews.


In a 1922 article, the New York Times reported “The Ku Klux Klan in the South and West is largely dominated by ‘lame duck’ preachers who could not make it good in the ministry.”


Simmons believed Christianity supported white supremacy, Kelly J. Baker, author of the book, “The Gospel According to the Klan,” said in an interview. “He and other Klan leaders would look to Christianity to find support for racism. Even liberal Protestant churches supported white supremacy. That seemed the natural order of things. Just as people used biblical texts to support slavery.”


In Klan propaganda and its 1916 rule book, Simmons said that only “good Christian white people” who believe in racial purity and Protestant morality would save the country from destruction.


“Hate in God’s Name,” a 2017 report by the Southern Poverty Law Center, says that white supremacist groups often invoke scripture from the Old and New Testament.
“This is particularly applicable to Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members,” the report says, “Christian Identity adherents and some neo-Nazis. White supremacists believe mainstream religions, including Christian denominations and their institutions, have fallen astray from God and are under the control and influence of Satan. As a result, white supremacists interpret scriptures and spiritual parables through the lens of racial discrimination and hate. In this way, they can justify their beliefs (which are vile and deplorable) as good, moral and responsible.”


Klan members believe “the Bible is the family history of the white race,” according to the report. “They believe that white Christians are morally and spiritually superior to other races.”


Excerpts from the Washington Post article “The preacher who used Christianity to revive the Ku Klux Klan”

The cult of white supremacy founded in the church by the KKK blossomed into Evangelical Christianity’s rise to political power in the 70s and 80s, made popular as a response to the women’s liberation movement, but begun as a response to school desegregation.

You may think the Klan lost its influence in the church decades ago, but I can tell you that I sat through full on sermons in 2008 by a Baptist preacher claiming Barack Obama was the Antichrist. Christian Nationalism and Dominionism were avenues to justify bigotry and a desire for political control. The end result is a cult of fascism. This is also one of the reasons why protestant Christianity in America looks so different from protestant Christianity in Europe. My very Christian friend in Ireland was flabbergasted as I explainied Americanized Christianity to him.

Starseeds and Root Race Theory

The New Age has it’s own, somewhat more covert version of this which is adapted from estoerist Helena Blavatsky. Theosophy, a philosophy that combined mysticism and spiritualism, promoted a concept called root race theory which says that humans evolved on earth through various epochs consisting of varyings stages, and that people on earth today are descendants of those races.

Blavatsky connects physical race with spiritual attributes constantly throughout her works:


The intellectual difference between the Aryan and other civilized nations and such savages as the South Sea Islanders, is inexplicable on any other grounds. No amount of culture, nor generations of training amid civilization, could raise such human specimens as the Bushmen, the Veddhas of Ceylon, and some African tribes, to the same intellectual level as the Aryans, the Semites, and the Turanians so called. The ‘sacred spark’ is missing in them and it is they who are the only inferior races on the globe, now happily – owing to the wise adjustment of nature which ever works in that direction – fast dying out. Verily mankind is ‘of one blood,’ but not of the same essence. We are the hot-house, artificially quickened plants in nature, having in us a spark, which in them is latent.”[20] … Esoteric history teaches that idols and their worship died out with the Fourth Race, until the survivors of the hybrid races of the latter (Chinamen, African Negroes, &c.) gradually brought the worship back. The Vedas countenance no idols; all the modern Hindu writings do.[21]


Theosophy teaches that the globes, planets, stars, etc. of both our solar system and beyond exist for the purpose of habitation and evolution. This is very closely linked with ideas behind “star seeds” in New Age circles.

It’s not difficult to see, after reading the passage above, how Hitler – a staunch occultist – was inspired by root race theory to form his ideas about Germans being the descendants of the superior Aryan race, leading to the greatest genocide in earth’s history.

Jules Evans explores this connection in one of several articles he’s written studying the ties between the alt-right and New Age spirituality. This one in particular also goes in-depth about the overlap between starseed/UFO culture with Christianity and the alt-right. 

Read about the dark historical roots of “starseeds” and its connection with eugenics, white supremacy, and fascism.

New Age social media influencers are documenting their conversion to Christianity online.

As I note in my article about the spread of QAnon, social media influencers in the wellness industry are what’s created this explosion. Their conversion from New Age to Christianity is being documented step-by-step, just like with Doreen Virtue, and their little mini cults of followers are falling in line.

My personal take is that many of them are disillusioned with their attempts to alleviate their personal trauma and suffering via New Age beliefs and practices rooted in toxic positivity like the Law of Attraction. New Age pop spirituality claims that it can heal you and make you whole by simply changing your thoughts, but there are so many things wrong with this view:

Christianity gives them another avenue through which to understand their personal suffering and why bad things happen, but it’s just another way to avoid acknowledging the reality that the world is shitty, largely because of Christianity, colonialism, and capitalism, not in spite o fit.

There’s a number of other factors involved here, such as America’s lack of media literacy and critical thinking, a culture of distrust of authority, but I hope today’s article at least opened your eyes to the connection between New Age spirituality and Evangelical Christianity and it’s ties to the alt-right.

Thanks for being here,



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