October 19, 2010

Business off for New Age sweat lodges

After Sweat Lodge Deaths, Fewer Spiritual Tourists

By Marc LaceyThere is negative energy in the air here, which the channelers, mystics, healers, psychics and other New Age practitioners of Sedona are grappling to identify and snuff out. It has to do with the recent dearth of visitors to this spiritual mecca in search of enlightenment.

Red Rocks State Park, near Sedona, Ariz., is less than five miles from Angel Valley, where three people died in a sweat lodge ceremony last October.

Nobody is sure exactly what is keeping people away from Sedona’s four vortexes, those swirling energy sources emanating from the earth, but the effects are clear: far fewer crystals are being purchased, spiritual tours taken and treatments—from aura cleansings to Chakra balancings—ordered.

That an earthly power—the economy—is a culprit is not in doubt. But some do not discount the lingering effect of an awful incident from a year ago that put Sedona’s New Age community in a bad light and that, to some degree, still lingers, despite efforts by metaphysical people to cast it away.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Oneida Sells Lakota Sweat Lodge? and New Book on Sweat Lodge Killer.

Below:  "A memorial to the three people who died during a a sweat lodge ceremony at Angel Valley in Sedona, Ariz." (Joshua Lott for The New York Times)


dmarks said...

Education can defeat these, along with confrontation inside the legal system and out for actual crimes involving manslaughter and fraud.

No need for frivolous lawsuits based on nothing-to-do-with-the-dictionary definitions of "theft".

Burt said...

Sweats have been going on for thousands of years on this continent. This cleansing ceremony is not a play thing for new agers and tourists to be using for their personal agendas and profits.

As someone that has been in a sweat lodge myself, one of the first things you are told is that if the ceremony gets "unbearable", you should get up and leave.

Anglo mentality turns everything into a pis*sing contest.

Where these people get the idea that they represent an ancient and sacred ceremony backfired on them for entrusting someone that exploited it for money or cultural prestige.

Sedona has been turned into a haven for quacky and self-proclaimed wannabes. They are nothing but a bunch of rich ignorant hippies exploiting tourists and promoting spiritualism by capitalist philosophy.

dmarks said...

I've been to one or two authentic Native sweat lodges. Outside of them, actually. As they were authentic, they were not in use, and weren't tourist sites. On the other extreme, a good friend of mine is one of those entirely non-Native new agers who has gone on sweats.