Mantra vs. Tongues
An investigative look at the use of New Age Mantras
opposed to speaking in tongues in the Browne ministry

By Ed Tarkowski

Rodney Howard-Browne. Browne is not with Vineyard, but holds over 500 meetings a year to minister the "laughing anointing" here in the U.S. On a video of one of his services on the Trinity Broadcasting Network with a potential of 20,000,000 viewers, the camera showed one gentleman still standing in the midst of a group of about 20 people prostrate on the floor. The gentleman was mildly laughing when Browne approached him. 

After a few minutes of PRIMING the man by SAYING the words "HA-HA, bubble" to him, Browne said, "Let's go back to the prayer mode: HA-HA." Browne's laughter was not at all natural, though the man himself WAS LAUGHING NATURALLY BUT MILDLY. WHY did Browne PRIME HIM WITH "HA-HA's"? The man did not have to repeat the prime, but he did. After about five minutes, the man immediately stopped laughing and he went down with a look of shock on his face. A power had "slain him in the spirit." Are such things scriptural?

SCRIPTURE for ministers to PRIME people for "laughing anointings": NONE.

SCRIPTURE: (After describing the gifts of the Spirit): "All these are THE WORK OF one and THE same SPIRIT, and HE GIVES THEM to each one, just AS HE DETERMINES" (I Corinthians 12:11). Scripture does not support the idea of ministers PRIMING people with words to receive His gifts. The Holy Spirit doesn't have us speak wisdom as a prime to get wisdom. He doesn't have ministers put prophetic words in our mouths to prime the gift of prophecy. The same is true for the other gifts. Let's recap what happened:

1. The man was gently laughing when Browne approached him.

2. Browne kept SAYING the WORDS "HA-HA." He probably did so because the man was      still standing, and maybe resisting "the anointing."

3. The man responded by SAYING the WORDS "HA-HA" while continuing to gently laugh.

4. The man quit laughing and had a shocked look on his face as he was taken down by an        obvious power that, at least momentarily, made him quit laughing.

What the man did after falling to the floor is unknown because the program ended with this segment of the service. I've talked about this to a few people who have been involved with gurus but have also seen the laughing phenomena. While in the New Age, they attended meetings where this phenomena also occurred. These New Age disciples were given a WORD
(mantra) to say for use in their meditations. They, too, repeated the WORD that was given them. They, too, experienced a power that altered their consciousness. Laughing is also a part of meditations used in New Age health therapies.

The Donning International Encyclopedic Psychic Dictionary defines MANTRA as:

MANTRA: . . . used as a POINT-OF-FOCUS while meditating; sound can be a syllable, word, or a series of words or syllables . .  ."

Concerning Browne's saying HA-HA as WORDS as though it were a mantra, consider these notes a woman sent me, and which I posted in a message a few weeks ago:

"The fifth chakra [Visudda in Kundalini Yoga] is located in the throat. It is the center for creativity and self-expression. The throat center influences the thyroid gland which affects the balance of the entire nervous system, metabolism, muscular control, and body heat production. This center is called the gateway to liberation because it leads beyond the physical/emotional planes and into astral space. . . . The symbolic form is chalice . . . and its sound vibration is the joyous delight expressed in the act of creation HA" (Bernard Gunther, Energy Ecstacy, p. 22).

The effects of this chakra are the same effects manifested by people at Browne's meetings. It is intriguing to me that Browne encouraged the man to REPEAT "HA-HA" as WORDS, which is exactly how the various mantras are given to followers of New Age gurus. People who've witnessed both testify to that. Using a mantra helps to focus the mind on making contact with another power. When one connects with that power, parts of the anatomy are affected. There are other strong similarities:

1. "HA" is the sound vibration of the fifth chakra that is the expression of joyous delight. "HA" was also used by Browne to bring about the expression of laughter.

2. Both connect one to a power.

3. Both affect the balance of the nervous system, muscular control, and body heat production. Some of the manifestations to people under the "anointing" at Browne's services are: convulsing, loss of the ability to move (paralysis), talking incoherently or loss of the power of speech, staggering like drunkards, walk like their drunk, extreme body heat, entering a trance-like state, or barking or howling.

The "throat center," where the fifth chakra is located, [in new age meditation] "is called the gateway to liberation because it leads beyond the physical/emotional planes and into astral space." Does this direction Browne gave to one lady sound like that? "Step over, step over, step over, step over into the realm of the supernatural. Step over into the realm of the supernatural. Step over out of the realm of reason into the realm of the glory." Into what was this woman step over into? What is the "realm of glory" she would experience? 

God says He already transferred us out of the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His dearly beloved Son. We're already vitally united to Him and in fellowship with the Triune God by the Holy Spirit in Christ Jesus. God has already seated us together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus. There's nothing to "step over into" for the Christian. The Holy Spirit has shown us that we can come boldly before the throne of grace, to Jesus our high priest, through His shed blood. But some people receiving "the anointing" say they enter another realm. What realm could it possibly be? Whatever it is, about a hundred people "stepped over" into it that night while the cameras were running. 

As I watched, I wondered how many of the potential 60,000,000 viewers were home doing the same after learning how to prime the themselves for laughter? How many of those "stepped over" as well? The video showed Browne coolly standing over a woman lying on the floor. She writhed, she flailed her arms, conversed with Browne in another language while hysterically laughing and shrieked like a demoniac. When I've showed people the video, all cringed at the sight of it. Some in favor of the phenomena say that these are individuals being delivered from demons. This could not be so in this case. Rodney laughed and fellowshipped with the spirit in this woman, and then left her in that condition as he walked away chuckling to himself and praising Jesus. People have called me from other places and reported the same frightening manifestations.

Is all of this how the Holy Spirit glorifies the Lamb of God? It is not the Holy Spirit because it conflicts with Scripture, but not with New Age practices.


The Donning International Encyclopedic Psychic Dictionary defines MANTRA and MANTRAM as:

MANTRA: . . . used as a POINT-OF-FOCUS while meditating; sound can be a syllable, word, or a series of words or syllables . .   ."

MANTRAM: a symbol of supreme reality; a holy name of God, or a spiritual formula in one's religion used as a device to alter one's mental activity; . . . USED AS A MANTRA in meditation. . "

Since it is unscriptural to prime people for laughing, why does RHB repeatedly pronounce the word HA? If he's (knowingly or not) using it as a MANTRA, could HA also be a MANTRAM, a holy name of God or supreme reality in the world of non-Christian mysticism? For instance,

HA/HAH/HO/HE/HI: Findings: letter of the ineffable name of God (tetragrammaton) in the Kabbala (Jewish mysticism). Phonetic from Browne video: HA.

HAA: Findings: one of 72 segments of the divided name of God in the Schemahamphorasch (Kabbala). Phonetic from Browne video: HA.

HAHAH: Findings: name of the 41st angel of the Schemahamphorasch; name formed by adding YAH with the name of the 41st segment of the divided name of God (HHH) (Kabbala); these angels rule over the 72 quinaries of the Zodiac. Phonetic from Browne video: HAHA.

QUESTION: CALLING ON OTHER GODS?: "The mantra represents a definite deity whom it praises and pleases; 'that of which it speaks is the deity'" (Alain Danielou, The Gods of India, p. 334 citing "Saravanukramani"). Whether or not you understand all the terms and principles of the Kabbala mentioned above, the bottom line is this: "HA" is a name of a god, an angel, or a combination of both in occult mysticism. With "HA" being both a mantra and a mantrum, it appears to be the equivalent of calling on another god.

QUESTION: THE MISSING LINK?: "The name [of the god] was, as it were, the vehicle by means of which the magician established a LINK between himself and his victim. . . ." (Lewis Spence, Myths & Legends of Babylonia & Assyria, p. 263). When Rodney SAYS, "HA" and the people manifest "HA-HA," is he establishing the LINK between the god "HA" and the person he is priming? On one of the tapes I have, it's interesting that the interviewer remarked to Browne, "This (laughter) is the missing element; this is the MISSING LINK that our churches have needed for a long time. True happiness, true joy" (The Good Life, 2-hour interview with Browne and his wife, April 20, 1994).

QUESTION: PRIMED FOR THE RELEASE OF POWER?: Once a mantra is accepted by the initiate, he is primed for the power of a deity to be manifested. Alain Danielou says, "The mantras [in this case, "HA"] . . . represent the nature of deities and are inseparable from them [mantras represent deities]. The power of the deity is inherit in its name, its formula, its mantra, which becomes the subtle vehicle through which contacts can be established between deity and worshiper. . . . Mantras are therefore the key to all rituals in all religions and are also used in most forms of magic" (The Gods of India, p. 334).

If "HA" is used as a mantra/mantram in RHB services, the manifestations seen there could be explained by Danielou's list of sixteen purposes of mantras (p. 337):

1. Attaining liberation ("Step out of the realm of reason into the supernatural. The realm of glory" - Browne).

4. Communicating with deities (If, as I believe, this experience is not the work of the Holy Spirit, then any spiritual communication must be with other gods or spirits).

5. The acquisition of superhuman powers (RHB manifests such powers during meetings).

7. Communicating with ghosts or spirits (questionable supernatural manifestations: "angels" poured hot oil on Rodney's brother during one meeting).

8. Warding off evil influences (Browne says that those who leave the meetings in progress, and those who says he's of the devil, are the "religious" or "the herd").

10. Cure of diseases (Browne relates various testimonies of healings during his meetings).

14. Influencing others' thoughts or actions (paralysis, incoherency, body heat change, etc.).

15. Bringing men, beasts, lesser deities, and ghosts under control (evident regarding men; e.g., Browne points at a group and they begin laughing).

Besides these eight manifestations, Danielou lists four which may be occurring at Browne's meetings and are suspect:

2. Worship of manifest forms of divinity;

3. Worship of lesser gods and genii;

9. Exorcising devils (a point of debate on this Forum).

16.The purification of the human body.

There are another four purposes of mantras which don't seem to be included in manifestations of the "anointing":

6. The feeding of Ancestors and gods;

11. preparing curative water; (12) destroying plants, animals of men;

13. eliminating poisons from the body. So out of 16 possible manifestations, 8
have been seen, 4 may possibly be occurring, and only 4 are not, we believe,
applicable to the meetings.

JAH, YAH: JAH/YAH is used a lot by Browne. I found this sound is quite
common in mythology, the Kabbala, and the Mystery Religions:

1. JAH: Sumerian Lord of the Waters;

2. one god of the Chaldean trinity: Jah-Bel-On. [HA=JAH=YAH]; used

3. also first god in the Babylonian trinity, but moreso an astrological formula:

4. one name of a triune god particularly used by Royal Arch Masons;

5. Abraxas [Satan] carried a shield on which was inscribed the great name
IAO, or JAH;

6. YAH (or JAH; phonetic): the Gnostic name of God.

Browne conversed with what appeared to be a demoniac, using YAH. Just
before this, he used the sound extensively with another person. The use of
YAH plus his admonitions to "just let it happen . . . but don't question" (by
getting out of God's way) intrigued me. Why? Because of the following
unspoken rule by Jamaicans and the Rastas of Rastafarianism: "Attain a
state of 'cool vibes,' allow JAH [=YAH] to take over, and events will unfold as
they should."

QUESTION: GODS RELEASED?: I have listened to Browne's tapes over
and over again to make sure, and it definitely sounds to me and others that
Browne adds an "s" on the end of important words, like "I release the power
of almighty gods" and "Like a mighty, rushing winds." Is he releasing
"almighty gods" during his meetings? Kabbalism seeks the qualities
emanated by the God hidden behind the words [names of God] used within the
Torah. Do we have the same pattern working through Browne? Do the words
that are spoken conceal the names of "the almighty gods," whose power he
releases through a mantram?

I believe all this is enough to say that:

1. Using HA and YAH to prime laughter is highly suspect;

2. Considering the New Age practice of drawing from any and all occult, mythological and religious systems, the variety of sources here doesn't negate the possibility of a mixture of gods being called upon. The devil doesn't follow a rulebook, and neither do New Agers.

Regardless, the debate must rest on two points: conflict with Scripture and whether or not the Holy Spirit PRIMES PEOPLE (as demonstrated in the video) to receive from Him.

  Ed Tarkowski

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By Faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death: and was not found, because YAHUVEH had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased YAHUVEH. Hebrews 11:5

By Faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death: and was not found, because YAHUVEH had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased YAHUVEH. Hebrews 11:5