Why Laugh in the Spirit?

When you hear someone laughing in the spirit, there is more that is happening than meets the eye. Angels are involved. Victories are being won. It could be called a form of prayer.

Laughter in the Spirit is a faith-response by our spirit to God’s victory through Christ over the devil.

Laughter in the Spirit is a participation by the believer in the victory of Him of Whom it is written, “He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh”.

The Bible says that angels ‘ascended’ and ‘descended’ upon the Son of Man. Notice angels ascend before they descend. Angels take something UP to heaven before they come back with blessing. What they take UP is FAITH. What they bring back is signs and wonders of the Holy Ghost. God responds to faith. And angels are involved in the delivery.

Here’s how it works. In response to a believer speaking it in faith, an angel is sent from heaven (to a believer, or to a group of believers in a meeting) to deliver the joy of the Lord. The joy of the Lord may then be RECEIVED, also by faith (and we can either hinder or help the receiving of the joy of the Lord – this applies both personally as well as in a whole meeting: WE can hinder or help the manifestation of the joy of the Lord in a meeting).

Once the joy is received, there is laughter – and laughter is also regarded in heavenly places as a further EXPRESSION OF FAITH. This laughter is akin to a PROFESSION OF FAITH IN CHRIST’S VICTORY. Therefore, in response to these further expressions of faith, even more angels are again dispatched to minister in various ways for those who are heirs of salvation.

This results in strongholds being pulled-down, in oppressions being broken, and in the spirit of heaviness lifting, in believers being strengthened – not only in the life of the individual who is laughing, but also in the lives of others who are in the meeting – and also in the lives and circumstances of others far distant, whether saved or unsaved, even overseas, even without our understanding.

This is why you will very often see laughter soon turning to the person receiving deliverance. Holy laughter comes from and is an expression of such a spirit of faith as inevitably repels the presence of demons.

Sometimes during a meeting several people may respond with laughter to something that is said (said either in a known or unknown tongue, it makes no difference). Whether it was said in a known or unknown tongue, those who are in the Spirit may respond to it by laughing in the spirit, for the Spirit of God knows the mind of God and He it is who is enabling them to share in God’s laugher and sense of victory. Such laugher is an expression of faith – a sharing in Christ’s victory. It is a form of PRAISE as a result of drawing with joy from the wells of salvation.

Therefore such laughter results in the individual himself (and also others in the meeting) becoming relieved of oppression, or it may even result in deliverances breaking-out en masse across the whole meeting. And the effectiveness of such laughter in the Spirit can even transcend the meeting-place and through a myriad of angelic activity bring about change in the lives of people and circumstances who are not present in the meeting, whether saved or unsaved, reaching even overseas, even without our understanding.

When one person in a meeting laughs in the Spirit, often others in the meeting who are also in the Spirit will begin to fellowship together with that person and with each other in the Spirit. There will be mutual expressions and responses of laughter, and mutal expression and responses in unknown tongues or in known tongues – it makes no difference.

This is often accompanied by visions being shared, tongues being interpreted, or prophecies and exhortations being spoken to one another, or spiritual songs being sung, and very often this will further progress to the point where one or two of those who are in the Spirit will begin ministering to the congregation.

Thus a whole lot of things are taking place: joy, healing, inner healing and freedom, revelation, profession, praise, thanksgiving, fellowship in the Spirit, prayer, intercession, petition, tongues, interpretations, prophecies, visions, exhortations, guidance and instruction from the Spirit – and it all started with laughter. Holy laughter is received by faith, it is an expression of faith, and it achieves what faith achieves: it causes God to procure victories on our behalf which He accomplishes by sending angels on our behalf.

Therefore anything that can be said about PRAYER may also be said about laughter in the Spirit – for laughter in the Spirit is a form of prayer, a form of praise, a form of revelation and profession, a form of fellowship in the Spirit, a form of ministry.

What do YOU think?

comments

Comments

  1. hollydeback says:

    I wanted to say thank you for posting this & PRAISE God! I experienced laughing in the spirit for the first tine tonight, it lasted over 20 minutes….I was praying out loud to God as I drove a 2hour hike for some respite of the turmoil that has happened in my life of recent…..I was praising God & claiming victory over illness & strong holds & healing of relationships & praising God for the victories…..as i was singing & praying & praising God on that cold dark road, I started laughing uncontrollably, deep from my belly, i felt so joyful & at peace & HAPPY for the first time in weeks, my heart was light & it felt like it was smiling, and the pain was gone….I immediately looked this up, as I knew it was God showing me signs of healing & intersession, I came across your site…..thank you for sharing, i am free & at peace & healing has taken place on many levels for all those involved….faith of a mustard seed…

  2. jaks_spring97 says:

    Thankyou John for posting this! I like how you said this laughter is a form or prayer worship. I’ve been experiencing this laughter for a few months now. I grew up Baptist so any interaction with the HolySpirit after salvation is pretty much frowned upon. (in my old church anyway) Now i go to a large church that’s less restrictive. I like being anonymous. I like to sit by myself and tune everyone else out so i can worship alone. Recently I’ve started laughing sometimes in worship service. I don’t roll around on the floor like people slain in the spirit. (I’m unsure if this is a different kind of laughter or if it’s my Baptist upbringing screaming that i shouldn’t make a scene–how pathetic.) Anyway, occasionally i experience a giggle that I can’t seem to suppress. This usually happens during the church’s water baptisms. I get to thinking about how their lives are changed…how beautiful they are as new creatures in Christ… how God will bless their family for generations to come…sort of an “I WIN, THESE ARE MINE!” statement from God. It’s an odd sensation…as if i’m agreeing with God at that moment. I usually weep when the HolySpirit is near, so yeah, i’m the dude that’s simultaneously crying and laughing in joy.
    I don’t know alot about the workings of the HolySpirit. I’ve read Acts over and over again trying to figure what exactly happened at Pentecost. I’ve started reading a book by Kenneth Hagin called “How You Can Be Led by the Holy Spirit”. I want to participate with God this way…but i don’t want to be led astray. Is this laughing evil and not really from God? Is it an attempt by Satan to distract me, like some of the posts here claim? It’s difficult to find people i trust to talk about this.

  3. Bob Foisel says:

    I agree with many of these posts, I believe because we are seated with him in heavenly places and are in the Spirit, It isn’t demonic. How can someone who is not Spiritual know what someone that is in the spirit can experience? I have been praying and praising the Father and experienced many emotions that I could tell were response emotions, I have experienced tears of joy, a Massive levels of love, peace, pity, boldness, ect. why not laughter.

    When anyone tells me it’s of the Devil, I test it against the Spirit and the Bible and the Spirit has always given me the correct answer the fastest. I do believe that we have been given all spiritual gifts, and spiritual discernment is also a gift. I have felt my
    spirit jump when someone comes in my business that is spirit filled and not even know them, I usually let them know what I felt and we proceed to have a conversation about the Lord. So I choose to stay full of the Spirit!

    Satan cannot stand the praises of God and will flee, so it is safe to say, only those without the Spirit of the living Lord need fear! Because they are not in relationship with the Lord.

  4. In 1985 while praying on my knees in my livingroom, I proceeded to stand to my feet and the power of God brought me back to my knees. I began to go into a travail and without any sense of warning in my spirit I began to laugh. During that time I had neither heard nor heard of anyone laughing in the spirit. This experience lasted for what seem to be about 5 min. And then I began to weep. I didn’t know what to think so as days went by I began to ask men and women who I thought were people who had been with the Lord long enough who if not had the experience at least had knowledge or heard of someone who had and could at least give me understanding of what I had gone through. No one could tell me anything that made sense to me. I finally went into prayer and inquired of the Lord what had occured. The Lord spoke to me and said there was a victory in the spirit realm in the course of my praying . After 20 or more years I yet have these experiences. This is the first time in 20 something years that I have heard of anyone or read of any group of people even talk about the subject . I will say that the experience is humbling and yet refreshing. When you submit to the will of God there is no telling what we will see or, hear God say in prayer. But we need to be careful in making an occasion a doctrine. There are a lot of things we have not experienced. I believe that eyes have not seen ears have not heard nor entered into the heart of men the things that God has planned for those that love and seek him.

    • I was reading Jeremiah 32 vs 23 and uncontrollable laughter hit me. I mean the kind that you described..right out of my belly, nothing was funny but ill look at it again and burst into laughter. I proceeded to worship and begun to weep and laugh at the same time. I have never ever experienced this phenomenon before and decided to search online for it and ask worship leaders if this is a common phenomenon. Thank you for sharing

      • Jeremiah 32 vs 27 I meant

      • John Edwards says:

        Great testimony Muyiwa! God bless you

      • The same happening to me while reading a passage in the Bible , it was the first time. The exact way it happened t o you Muyiwa. We don’t understand it but our spirit does. Glory to the Lord!

      • The same had happened to me while reading a passage in the Bible , it was the first time. The exact way it happened t o you Muyiwa. We don’t understand it but our spirit does. Glory to the Lord!

  5. michael says:

    I want to go on record that I believe that there are times when a person will laugh because of the work of the Holy Spirit, and it usually signifies some kind of spiritual breakthrough. There is a certain laugh my wife sometimes has in prayer which I recognise. When it comes, my wife is always stronger spiritually and more at peace afterwards.

    I do believe that like all God’s gifts, this laughter can be counterfeited both psychologically and demonically. Therefore, what is important is seeking the Lord and His truth above the seeking of manifestations. We should seek the Lord, who is Spirit, but not all things spiritual are of God, even when they happen in the church or in the life of a Christian.

  6. DEAR FRIENDS
    I WAS IN SERVICE AT CHURCH LAST SUNDAY AND THE LORD FILLED ME WITH SUCH A JOY THAT I COULD NOT CONTAIN IT . I BEGAN TO LAUGH AND LAUGH I HAD NEVER EXPERIENCED ANYTHING LIKE IT . IT WAS OF GOD HE IS THE GREATEST . I AM PRAYED UP I AM PRAISED UP AND I AM HUNGRY FOR GOD .
    WHEN WE BECOME HUNGRY FOR GOD .HE WILL SHOW UP .HE DID JUST THAT . I BELEIVE HIS MANIFESTATION STARTED WITH A DRUNKARD FALLING TO HER KNEES IN REPENTANCE AND ASKING FOR SALVATION . PEOPLE BEGAN TO LAY FACE DOWN AND REPENT AND POUR OUT THEIR HEARTS TO THE LORD AND SING NEW SONGS AND JUST WORSHIP HIM .LAUGHTER IS REAL AND IT DOES THE BODY GOOD .
    HAVE A BLESSED DAY
    IN CHRIST JESUS
    DAWNA

  7. Richard L. Jackson says:

    Good Day,
    I just wanted to comment on Bills Book, 23 minits in hell. Some folks just do not know that hell is a “for real place”.

    I have read Bill’s book three times now and I can assure you that you do not want to go to hell!! How do I know? The Holy Spirit of God witnessed it to me and prompted me to buy Bill’s Book.

    I am now sharing with everyone that I know that hell is for real!! God has given me the words to speak through his spirit and I know He will use me to Bless others who do not beleive Him. Jesus is Lord!! I give Him Praise and Glory for having the opportunity to serve Him!! Praise You Lord

    In His Service,
    Richard L. Jackson/Rich

  8. I agree completly with you both pshrader and Gods sunflower. I used to be so stingy and never laugh, I was in a deep depression but after God delivered me this year, when the Spirit hits me I just laugh and laugh and I LOVE it! I don’t know why anyone would say that’s demonic. Our Father loves to laugh, so why shouldn’t we be able to laugh too? I think it’s beautiful and really gives me joy.

  9. michael says:

    The laughing movement peaked around 1996 – most people who were into promoting it have since moved on. Its not clear that it has delivered what was promised at all.

    Many of the points raised by Eligah seem valid. But what shall we say about John’s assertion that “Laughter in the Spirit is a faith-response by our spirit to God’s victory through Christ over the devil.”

    How can we know for sure that this is so? It sounds plausible, but is there any example in the Scripture of a believer’s laughter having this signification?

    If there is no biblical precedent for this, then perhaps we should say that at very least this manifestation cannot be important.

    On joy: Jesus evidently had joy within Himself. He referred to it in John 15. And John had joy – see 1 John 1, first few verses. No where is it stated that Jesus laughed. Nowhere does it say that he did not laugh. Jesus rejoiced. I wonder what that looked like? It does not say.

    I welcome discussion on this subject. I would say I do not have the answers yet.

    • skinnyboy71 says:

      Ephesians 2:5-6 “Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, And hath raised us up together , and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.

      Psalms 2:4 “He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh : the Lord shall have them in derision”

      Plus, I dont believe that every miracle, sign, or wonder will be in the Bible. God is still the creator and I believe he is still doing/creating new things.

      John 20:30 “Jesus did many other miraculous signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book.”

      I dont really believe we have to make a big deal about this. If we align ourselves with scriptures and acknowledge God in all our ways He will make our paths straight.

      When we get a sensation of laughter this is automatically of the devil? I believe sometimes our bodies our some overwhelmed with the joy of the LORD that we cannot contain it. Not to say that this manifestation of laughter is never a result of demonic influence. satan is always trying to pervert the things of God. By perverting the things of God satan has created a fear in Christians which has stopped us from accessing the fullness of God. I agree there are many instances in which this type of laughter seems demonic but this is just perversion of what is true. Should we consider prophecy demonic because satan has created a counterfeit in the form of psychics. Should we consider meditating demonic even though the Bible commands us to meditate on thing of God/heaven. Christians are never supposed to fear but we are supposed to be on gaurd at all times wearing the full armor of God.

      Seek God with all your heart, read the word daily, and pray for discernment. If we do this I dont think God will continue to allow us to waddle around in confusion. I personally think this is of God and unless He gives me revelation concerning otherwise I will continue to believe this way. God Bless!

    • Sherry Hirsch says:

      I am 60 years old-I have been in the presence of many “great ministers”- I have seen glory movements come and go-I have seen laughing in the spirit come and go-always something new-yet there is nothing new under the sun-I trust only those manifestations that follow Holy Scripture-I trust in those manifestations that point others to the Cross and Salvation. That is our purpose in life. Yes, I am filled with the Holy Spirit-I thank the Lord for this gift-I thank Him more for the hunger and desire to lead souls to Him-to mend the brokenhearted. Trust in His Word and avoid looking for “new things”-He has already accomplished more than enough.www.sherrylynnhirch.com

  10. Nowadays churches are getting corrupted by this “new” idea of the holy laughter. Which is far from being holy it’s demonic. People should open their spiritual eyes and see the truth if they haven’t already. This laughter which is supposbly of the holy spirit isn’t. So be alert and do not be decieved by todays wicked and evil wolves who come in sheeps clothing.
    Heres some more interesting facts on this topic!!!

    But what does the Bible say about laughter?

    Last summer, after watching Rodney Howard-Browne on TBN, I consulted my concordance to see if there was any biblical precedent for “holy” laughter. Surprisingly, I found only 40 references to laughter in the Bible; 34 of them were in the Old Testament, while only 6 were in the New Testament. Of those 40 references 22 of them referred to scornful laughter, as in Nehemiah 2:19 when Nehemiah said, “they laughed us to scorn.” Of the 18 remaining references to laughter, seven of them referred exclusively to Abraham and Sarah’s initial disbelief and ultimate astonishment that God would give them a child in their old age. Barely into my study on laughter I was already down to my last 11 references.

    In Job 8:21 Bildad, one of Job’s false comforters, wrongly advised Job that if he were in right standing with God he would be prosperous and full of laughter. The Psalmist in Psalm 126:2 recorded that when the captivity of Zion was over, “then was our mouth filled with laughter and our tongue with singing.” Proverbs 29:9 says, “if a wise man contendeth with a foolish man, whether he rage or laugh, there is no rest.”

    With only 8 remaining references I had seen nothing in the Bible up to this point that suggested anything even resembling “holy” laughter. In Ecclesiastes 2:2 Solomon says, “I said of laughter, it is mad.” Ecclesiastes 3:4 says, there is “a time to weep and a time to laugh; a time to mourn and a time to dance.” Ecclesiastes 7:3-4 says, “sorrow is better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning; but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.” Ecclesiastes 7:6 says, “for as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of a fool: this also is vanity.” Ecclesiastes 10:19 says that “a feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry.”

    Interestingly the Bible’s last three references to laughter–the only three references to authentic laughter in the New Testament–warn against laughter. These three references actually seemed to underline Solomon’s contention in Ecclesiastes that “sorrow is better that laughter” and that now is a time to weep and not to laugh. In Luke 6:21 Jesus says, “blessed are ye that weep now: for ye shall laugh.” In Luke 6:25 Jesus says, “woe unto you that laugh now! for ye shall mourn and weep.” James 4:9 tells us not to laugh but to “be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.”

    I had searched the scriptures to find any biblical precedent for “holy” laughter and there was none. To my amazement, I had discovered that there were surprisingly few references in the Bible to any kind of laughter. Did this mean that God doesn’t have a sense of humor or that people in the Bible never laughed? No. It just meant that laughter apparently was not something that God chose to emphasize very much. And certainly Jesus’ last words on laughter–“woe unto you who laugh now!”–were not ones that would seem to give any encouragement to a “laughing revival.”

    The Lord says, “Come now, and let us reason together” (Isaiah 1:18. Here are some of my concerns about “holy” laughter and “the laughing revival.”

    (1) There is no biblical precedent for “holy” laughter.

    Laughter is rarely mentioned in the Bible. Yet, when it is, the Bible seems to make more of a case for holy sorrow than for “holy” laughter. Scripture supports Solomon’s contention that “sorrow is better than laughter.” It does not support the present “laughing revival.”

    (2) Substituting the word joy for laughter is a non sequitur. It is inaccurate and misleading.

    There is no scriptural authority for equating biblical references to joy with the involuntary manifestations of “holy” laughter. Just because there are insufficient Bible texts to make the case for “holy” laughter, it does not follow that you can simply redefine the word laughter by substituting the word joy.

    (3) “Holy” laughter advocates rarely, if ever, discuss the need to “test the spirits.”

    The Bible warns us that not every supernatural manifestation is necessarily from God. 1 John 4:1 says, “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” Charles and Francis Hunter write in their book Holy Laughter, “Once you begin to walk in the supernatural you really have to be ready for anything and everything and never question the way God does it!” (p.65)

    (4) “Holy” laughter advocates rarely, if ever, talk about the Spirit’s express warning that in the latter times some people will be supernaturally seduced by deceptive evil spirits into following them and not the one true God.

    1 Timothy 4: warns, “Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.”

    (5) “Holy” laughter advocates rarely, if ever, talk about the Bible’s warnings of false prophets who come in the name of Jesus but bring with them “another spirit.” 2 Corinthians 11:4 says, “For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him.”

    (6) Many laughter advocates condescendingly discourage and even openly intimidate sincere Christians who question the “laughing revival.”

    According to the August Charisma article, Rodney Howard-Browne “disparages” people who “try to apply theological tests” to what he does. The Hunters’ book Holy Laughter refers to skeptics as God’s “frozen chosen.” Mona Johnian writes, “skeptics, hesitaters and procrastinators do not get anointed.” She warns “that any person or church that wavered could be eliminated.”

    (7) Rodney Howard-Browne’s prayer to God just prior to his “anointing” (“either you come down here and touch me or I’ll come up there and touch you”) was unscriptural.

    Howard-Browne’s prayer was the essence “my will be done.” It was not “thy will be done,” as taught by Jesus in scripture. Why should we automatically assume that it was God who answered his prayer?

    (8) “Holy” laughter advocates, in talking about “signs and wonders,” rarely, if ever, mention the Bible’s many warnings about deceptive signs and wonders.

    In Matthew 16:4 Jesus warns, “a wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign.” In Matthew 24:24 JESUS says, “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.” In 2 Thess. 2:9 the apostle Paul warns of the coming Antichrist, “even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders.”

    (9) “Holy” laughter advocates seem to lay hands on almost everybody. The Bible specifically warns against this.

    The eighth chapter of Acts describes how the disciples would not lay hands on Simon, a baptized believer, even though he desperately wanted the gift of the Holy Ghost, because his heart was “not right in the sight of God.” 1 Timothy 5:22 warns us to “lay hands suddenly on no man.” Yet “holy” laughter is passed on from person to person without so much as a second thought.

    (10) “Holy laughter advocates blatantly disregard the biblical admonition that things be done decently and in order.

    1 Corinthians 14:40 says, “Let all things be done decently and in order.” Mona Johnian in her book Fresh Anointing says, “decently and in order! We must do things decently and in order. The Bible itself commands it, cry those who are frightened by that which is beyond traditional order” (p. 35). She advises her readers to “break with tradition” (p.45).

    (11) The chaos and confusion that usually characterizes the “laughing revival: contradicts the Bible’s description of the Person of God.

    1 Corinthians 14:33 states, “For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.”

    (12) Laughter advocates rarely if ever, discuss the well documented demonic deceptions that have manifested in past revivals.

    To combat the deception that arose during the Welsh revival at the turn of this century authors Jessie Penn-Lewis and Evan Roberts wrote “War on the Saints: a disclosure of the deceptive strategies used by evil spirits against God’s people.” Both were very involved with the revival and were extremely concerned about the demonic manifestations that began to dominate their meetings. The forward to War on the Saints warns of “the grave dangers that beset the path of uninformed enthusiasm.”

    (13) A number of Christians have experienced the equivalent of “holy” laughter when they were in the New Age.

    Indian Guru Bhagvhan Shree Rajneesh was affectionately known by his followers as the “divine drunkard” because he was reputed to have drunk so deeply from the well of the “Divine.” As a former follower of Rajneesh I met hundreds of Sannyasins who had flown to India “to drink” from “Bhagwan’s wine.” When followers were physically touched by Rajneesh, or even if they were merely in his presence, they would often experience feelings of great exhilaration and joy. Disciples of Swami Baba Muktananda would often manifest uncontrollable laughter after receiving Shaktipat (physical contact) from the guru.

    (14) The “laughing revival” could one day merge with what the New Age calls the coming day of “planetary Pentecost.”

    Barbara Marx Hubbard, (revered New Age leader and a 1984 Democratic nominee for the Vice Presidency of the United States), writes in her book, Teachings from the Inner Christ, how the human race will soon experience a day of “Planetary Pentecost.” Hubbard, claiming to be in contact with “Christ,” writes: “the Planetary Smile is another name for the Planetary Pentecost. When enough of us share a common thought of our oneness with God, Spirit will be poured out on all flesh paying attention” (p.79). In her book The Revelation, Hubbard says “Christ,” in describing the planetary smile, said: “an uncontrollable joy will ripple through the thinking layer of the earth. The co-creative systems, which are lying psychologically dormant in humanity will be activated. From within, all sensitive persons will feel the joy of the force, flooding their systems with love and attraction…as this joy flashes through the nervous systems of the most sensitive peoples on earth, it will create a psycho magnetic field of empathy, which will align the next wave of people in synchrony, everywhere on Earth. This massive, sudden empathic alignment will cause a shift in the consciousness of Earth” (p. 234-235). Writing in Happy Birth Day Planet Earth, Hubbard repeats what she heard from “Christ.” He said, “as the planetary smile ripples through the nervous systems of earth, and the instant of co-operation begins, and empathy floods the feelings of the whole body of Earth, separation is overcome, and I appear to all of you at once (p. 10-11).

    The controversy over “holy” laughter is already splitting congregations and causing deep divisions in the body of Christ. And while many people have already taken sides, there are many more who are still trying to figure out just what is going on. Is this really a move of God, or is this the kind of deception the Bible warns about in Matthew 24, 1 Timothy 4:1, and in the second chapter of Thessalonians?

    Unity is indeed the heartfelt desire of every sincere Christian (Psalm 133:1). But the Bible warns of massive deception that will come at the end and in Christ’s name. Before the Church–in the name of unity–free falls into a worldwide “laughing revival,” we had better be sure what it is we are uniting with.

    In reflecting on “holy” laughter during these very troubled times, I recalled a music special I had seen on television a number of years ago. In the midst of an otherwise polite Hollywood type crowd, a male vocalist sang straight faced and sober into the teeth of their celebration. His words were electric and piercing, and they seemed to hang in the air. He sang, “you’re laughing now, but you should be praying. You’re in the midnight hour of your life.”

    Some Examples of Holy Laughter in Other Religions

    1) Kundalini Energy is typically described as a powerful energy source lying dormant in the form of a coiled serpent at the base of the human spine. When freed it reputedly has the capacity to effect great physical healings. Christina and Stanislov Grof, New Age authors of the book The Stormy Search for the Self, describe how the awakening of Kundalini energy can be triggered by an advanced spiritual teacher or guru. And how the awakening can bring up memories of past psychological traumas. The Grofs state that “individuals involved in this process might find it difficult to control their behavior; during power rushes of Kundalini energy, they often emit various involuntary sounds, and their bodies move in strange and unexpected patterns. Among the most common manifestations . . . are unmotivated and unnatural laughter or crying, talking tongues . . . and imitating a variety of animal sounds and movements” (p. 78-79). The Grofs state that “careful study of the manifestations of Kundalini awakening confirm that this process, although sometimes very intense and shattering, is essentially healing.”

    Bwagwhan Shree Rajneesh, the former Oregon guru tells one of his followers in his book, Dance Your Way To God, “just be joyful . . . God is not serious . . . this world cannot fit with a theological god . . . so let this be your constant reminder – that you have to dance your way to God, to laugh your way to God” (p. 229). Often referred to as being “drunk on the divine,” Rajneesh encouraged his followers to come and “drink” from him. Bahgvan’s spiritual “wine” was often passed along with a single touch to the head. Many of his Sannyasins would fall to the floor in ecstasy after their encounters with Rajneesh.

    Ramakrishna, an Indian saint, “daily went into ‘samahdi,’ a trance in which one involuntarily falls down unconscious and enters a rapturous state of super-conscious bliss (ananda), complete with beautiful visions and often involving astral projection. These states could last anywhere from a few minutes to several days and were often accompanied by uncontrollable laughter or weeping. He could send others into this state with a single touch to the head or chest” (unpublished article by John Rice on file at SCP).

    Swami Baba Muktanada would transfer what was called “guru’s grace” to his followers through Shaktipat (physical touch). This “grace” triggered the gradual awakening of the Kundalini which in turn produced various physical and emotional manifestations. Manifestations included uncontrollable laughing, roaring, barking, hissing, crying, shaking, etc. Some devotees became mute or unconscious. Many felt themselves being infused with feelings of great joy and peace and love. At other times the “fire” of Kundalini was so overwhelming they would find themselves involuntarily hyperventilating to cool themselves down (Per former Muktananda follower Joy Smith).

    2) African Kung Bushmen of the Kalahari. The Grofs, in their book The Stormy Search For The Self , also cite an interesting parallel between the Kundalini awakening and the trance dance of the African Kung bushmen. During rituals the bushmen “enter a profound altered state of consciousness associated with the release of powerful emotions such as anger, anxiety, and fear. They are often unable to maintain an upright position and are overcome by violent shaking. Following these dramatic experiences, they typically enter a state of ecstatic rapture. According to the bushmen tradition, the dance releases from the base of the spine a cosmic healing force called ntum or ‘medicine.’ This is then passed by direct physical contact from one person to another.”

    3) Qigong (ancient Chinese practice) Yan Xin, a Chinese Qigong master known to most of the over one billion people in China, gave a talk in San Francisco in 1991. Seventeen hundred devotees, most of them Chinese, showed up at the Masonic auditorium to listen to Yan. The San Francisco Chronicle on 5/16/91 reported that “minutes into his talk, several began experiencing what Yan Xin calls spontaneous movements.” The Chronicle reporter said that “before long, the scene resembled a Pentecostal prayer meeting with many people waving their arms and making unintelligible sounds.” Yan told his audience, “Those who are sensitive might start having some strong physical sensations – or start laughing or crying. Don’t worry. This is quite normal.” The article said that “since 1985, when a Qigong revival started sweeping China, 50 to 60 million Chinese have gone to see Yan.”

    4) Subud. According to The Encyclopedia of American Religions by J. Gordon Melton, the central element of the Subud faith is the practice of “latihan.” Latihan is the way one surrenders to the power of God. It is a group process. The Encyclopedia says, “the latihan proper is a time of moving the consciousness beyond mind and desire and allowing the power to enter and do its work. . . . often accompanying the spontaneous period are various body movements and vocal manifestations – cries, moans, laughter and singing. These occur in the voluntary surrender of the self to the power. During this time, people report sensations of love and freedom and often, healings. All reach a higher level of consciousness”

    • I just want to caution you on making statements like “holy laughter is demonic.” If it is truely from the Holy Spirit, by making a statement like that, you have blasphemed the Holy Spirit. I’m not saying that it is or isn’t from the Holy Spirit, but be careful in attributing manifestations to demons. It is the one unforgivable sin.

      • Gods sunflower says:

        I agree with you 100% pshrader, he do need to be careful in making such a statement, I have seen people under the anointing of the Holy Spirit and the laughter that comes from them places a smile on my face. God is not a dull God neither is He a boring God. God do has a sence of humor. He makes us laugh, we cry at times, we shout for joy, what a great God that we serve. I too have experence the holy laughter and sir it was nothing demonic. God is truly awesome.

        • Alan Bab says:

          I have laughed until it hurt and it was a blast. I have noticed that so many religious people have separated their religion from real life. I sing in and out of church services. I pray in and out of the building. I smile, laugh, cry, shout. It seems that we have sacred things and places and non-sacred things and places. Only what is traditional is allowed. Mostly “twice dead and plucked by the roots” expressions of life are accepted in church: “solemn”, I believe, is the key word. These same people leave church and split a gut (as it were) at their Sunday afternoon small group. Small groups are considered secular enough to laugh? But if the conversation happens to get on something spiritual, that solemn spirt has to be indulged. If it isn’t a short glare at the offending person by leader stick-in-the-mud should do the trick. If the “look” doesn’t work the offender will comply with the secular/sacred lecture. That should douse that laughing demon. Someone said that every bush should be a burning bush and all ground holy ground. If laughing should be banned from church but not from life then the church should change not life. Jesus did not come to bring another religion but He came to bring life – abundant life! We should pick our battles carefully – laughing out loud ain’t one of them. The devil loves us drawing lines, braking fellowship and issuing accusitory oppinions aginst each other. Sad!

    • Eligah’s comment on the above subject is very comprehensive and above all, is based on Scripture, and, I believe, is a correct one!
      I have witnessed much of this “Holy Laughter” in my 30 years as a Charismatic minister, and as a result, I have withdrawn from such ministries that practise what I honestly believe to be demonic infiltration of the church of our Lord Jesus Christ. One of the fruit of the Holy Spirit is self-control, and hysterical and maniacal shrieking with laughter is not one of them. I have no fear of being branded with blaspheming the Holy Spirit, and that is not spiritual arrogance on my part! The fruit of “Joy”
      is a deep and profound understanding of the salvation provided by our Lord Jesus Christ and a thankful and grateful realisation that we are part of God’s KIngdom and that Jesus truly is Lord of our lives.
      We are ALL invoked by Scripture to “test the spirits” to see if they are of the Lord, and this is sadly lacking or non-existent in many Charismatic churches and fellowships.
      In many of the old Revivals, especially the Welsh Revival in my own nation, many satanic intrusions were manifested and had to corrected by those who had applied true Biblical “distinguishing of spirits” 1Cor 12:10.

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