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Crystal Cathedral’s Robert Schuller and History

Scott on January 11, 2006 at 4:39 am

It was interesting to see that Robert Schuller, senior pastor of the Crystal Cathedral, is stepping down as the head of the Cathedral and is passing the mantle over to his Tony Robbins-look-alike son Robert A Schuller. Press Release

For those of you who aren’t hip to the Crystal Cathedral, this is the church that has the “church show” on Sunday mornings where the content of the sermons usually can be reduced down to something like, “Feel good because God feels good for you!” -or “You are filled with Positive Potential…and God should know ’cause He put it there!” In other words, this is the church show that is high on performance-value but low on content-value (does the phrase “shallow as a puddle of water” ring any bells?).

Anyway, what caught my attention was what I found in the closing paragraph of the press release put out by the Cathedral…

“Robert H. Schuller, 79 is regarded as one of the most influential religious leaders in history.”

WOW! He is “one of the most influential religious leaders IN HISTORY!” Isn’t that a really BIG claim to make? Talk about EGO! I mean, COME ON! When they say “one of the most influential religious leaders,” aren’t they putting him in a kind of “Top Ten” category? Don’t you have to DO some amazing thing(s) to get that kind of label? Don’t you need to accomplish some really positive things for your respective religion to be considered “most influential?”

Schuller founded a single church that has spent the last 50 years watering down the teachings of Jesus Christ and mixing them up with trite Norman Vincent Peale-isms with a dash of new age, new psychology, and just plain weirdness.

Oh, yes. AND he started a television show to spread the unique flavor of his church to others who don’t want to feel bad about themselves, who don’t want to be judged, and who still want to feel that they aren’t going to Hell.

Based on his church and television show, I might go so far as to say he has been an influential religious leader in the United States. But in the history of the whole world? GIVE ME A BREAK!

If someone were to ask me to list the ten or twenty most influential religious leaders in history, I’m thinking my list would look something like this: Jesus, Mohammad, Buddha, Gandhi, Moses, the Apostle Paul, Jonathan Edwards, Confucius, Solomon, St. Augustine, Martin Luther, Rene Descartes, Billy Graham, Brigham Young, Joseph Smith, John Calvin, Francis of Assisi, Thomas Aquinas, Abraham, Mary Baker Eddy.

And my list really ignores contemporary religious leaders of great notoriety (though some are also notorious) such as: Louis Farrakhan, Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul II, etc.

In my list, Schuller doesn’t even deserve to crack the Top Twenty of history’s most influential religious leaders. Maybe he could crack the Top Twenty for the list of Most Influential Religious Leaders of the 20th Century in the United States, but even then, he would be down around #18, sandwiched between Louis Farrakhan and Jerry Falwell.

But other than that, SORRY!

Luckily for us, HISTORY takes a longer view of things than does the ego of Robert Schuller!

Anyone else out there have a list of “historic/influential religious leaders?”

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Category: Religion & Faith |

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