Sep 18, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Moving into the Deep Water: Update

We all need to learn to swim in the black water. It is the deep water of life where we are no longer in control. We must surrender ourselves to life on its own terms and learn to swim. The blue water is the shallow water of life, where our actions simply maintain our status quo. So if we are to create change in ourselves, we must actively gain those skills and learn to apply them. What then is required of us if we are to change our world? In the spring of 2018, host and shaman, Christina Pratt, asked this question and begin a new series of online courses designed to be an answer. Where are we in this exploration into the deep water of what it means to be human in this time of constant change, great challenge, and infinite opportunity?

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Scorpio Lovers

October 23-November 22

Most compatible: Taurus, Cancer, Virgo, Capricorn, Pisces

Scorpios are ruled by both fiery Mars and destructive Pluto, and this reflects their two relationship modes. Scorpios love intensely but also fight intensely. Scorpio relationships are certainly never dull.
New Love
When looking for love, Scorpios like to be pursued. They will send clear signals that they are interested, but will rarely make the first move as they want the affirmation of being pursued and wooed. They love the intensity of meeting someone new and like to go all out when it comes to the initial dating process, both giving, and expecting to receive, over the top gestures of affection.
Budding Relationships
Scorpios fall in love fast and hard, but even after they have found someone they have intense feelings for, they will be reluctant to drop the persona they present to the world and share the deep font of emotions that they keep bottled up underneath. When Scorpios do finally let their guard down, it is a big deal for them, and if their partner fails to recognise that, the walls can come up again quickly and harder than before.


Sep 11, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Getting Unstuck Part Four: The Lies We Tell

We all experience stuckness at some point in life and there is an art to getting out of it. You can become the person who accesses the latent power in your mess and effectively redirects it into living your deeper purpose. But not if you persist in lying to yourself. There is an, unconscious lie being propagated in our inner narrative about our capacity for healing and transformation. In part four of the "Getting Unstuck" series, host and shaman, Christina Pratt, draws on 30 years of successful trauma healing and deep-state transformation to exposes the lies that are alive and well and growing in the contemporary healing dialogue. She shares how the crazy logic of Trickster thinking teaches us to hear our own lies as messages from our fragmented self.

Tuesday, September 11, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Sep 4, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Gift of the Dreamtime with Kelley Harrell

For those of you interested in shamanism you can experience a shaman finding her shaman legs, reshaping the workings of her mind, and awakening her courageous heart in the re-release of Gift of the Dreamtime. For the rest of you this is a story of healing. It is an inspiration for those who have suffered great trauma, like incest, chronic violence, or the soul loss induced by the daily, normal horrors of war, and refuse to be hobbled or accept anything less than the life you came here to live. Join us this week as author and neoshaman, Kelley Harrell shares her experiences and insights with host, Christina Pratt. Kelley has served her local community in North Carolina and an international client base since 2000 through Soul Intent Arts. In her own words, “My path of shamanism is original and claims no culture other than the one of my creation. I do not seek to teach a branded path of shamanism, but to present the map for you to create your own. Through private sessions, classes, and Distance Mystery School, I’m here to create a new tribe of support for children and adults whose lives are blessed with an uncontainable inner knowing. This is The Tribe of the Modern Mystic.”

**This show originally aired July 22, 2012.**

Tuesday, September 4, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Aug 28, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

The Runic Book of Days with Kelley Harrel

"Our most challenging task as humans is finding meaning in our self and the world around us," says Kelley Harrell, author of Runic Book of Days. This means, how do we stand, fully conscious in our personal power in our everyday actions of life? In her new book, Harrel offers the runes as a contemporary tool to assist us in answering that question. The runes are an ancient, deeply revelatory oracle that captures the essence of the process of the soul embodied and then delivers the wisdom needed to live it in small, relatable morsels. Join us this week as modern shaman and author, Kelley Harrel, joins host, Christina Pratt, to explain that to work with the runes systematically through the seasons, allows a cycle of initiation to emerge.

This week's guest:
Kelley Harrell


Kelley Harrell is an author and modern shaman in Fuquay-Varina, North Carolina. A lifelong intuitive and deathwalker, she has worked with a local and international client base since 2000. She holds a Masters in Religious Studies, and is an ordained interfaith minister. Her work is Nature-based, and is focused through the lenses of animism, Seiðr, and Druidry. She works closely with the Elder Futhark Runes and divine Nature Spirits of eastern North Carolina. Her shamanic practice is Soul Intent Arts. Kelley advocates for social justice through sacred activism, and is vigorously involved with the worlds in and around her.

Tuesday, August 28, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Aug 26, 2018

Esoterica



Satanic Temple statue unveiled at the Arkansas State Capitol

Dozens attended a rally held by the Satanic Temple at the Arkansas State Capitol on Thursday.

The rally comes after the Arkansas legislature approved the placement of a Ten Commandments monument on the Capitol grounds.

During the Satanic Temple's Rally for the First Amendment, a more than 8-feet-tall Baphomet statue was unveiled.

. . .

Following the installation of the Ten Commandments monument, the Satanic Temple filed a lawsuit to have its statue placed on the same grounds in the name of religious pluralism and the First Amendment.

During the 2017 legislative session, the Satanic Temple sent a letter to Arkansas legislators asking for lawmakers to sponsor a bill that would allow a Baphomet statue on Capitol grounds, but not one lawmaker responded.

Aug 21, 2018

In Pennsylvania, A Reckoning

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.



The headlines alone make make my gorge rise:


Disney World! Who would knowingly help a pedophile get a job at Disney World?!!! The Catholic Church, that's who.

Like people all across the country, and probably much of the world, I have been processing, over the past week, the horrible revelations to come out of the Pennsylvania grand jury report on priestly abuse throughout the state. At least 300 "predator priests" abused at least 1,000 children (their findings acknowledge that the actual number is probably much higher), over a seventy year period. And the Church establishment, as it has done in so many dioceses around the world, conspired to keep it all covered up. They moved offending priests around to different jobs many of which still gave them access to minors, they hid records under lock and key, and they threw the victims under a bus. Same story, different state. Yet somehow this time feels so much worse.

If the Catholic sexual abuse scandal that came to light in 2002 slowly unspooled through news reports, Pennsylvania's grand jury report landed like an atom bomb, dropping its online horrors all at once. With some redactions, the report was readily available for everyone to read and share: the accusations of sexual deviance, shameless lies and deceitful churchmen.

"What we have now is people freely expressing their outrage on Facebook and Twitter," said Greg Kandra, a Catholic deacon in Brooklyn, New York. "The anger is palpable. This is like 2002 on steroids."

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Wild Fires, Climate Change, and Shamanism with Ana Larramendi

As the wild fires rage throughout the western North America for another season, how do we respond? The destruction is real and truly devastating, and, at the same time, we are the creators of this scenario. Where is our responsibility and how to we exercise it? From a shamanic perspective a human is one of billions of organisms that inhabit and make up the planet we call Earth. To the elementals and nature spirits we are all part of the community of living things. Our most effective actions will be as part of that larger community. Join us this week as practitioner, Ana Larramendi, joins host Christina Pratt to explore how we can use our shamanic skills to assist nature in doing the corrective measures needed to balance what is out of balance. How do we ask the permission from the land spirits to intervene? And what do we do when we are told "no"?

This week's guest:
Ana Larramendi


Ana Larramendi has spent her life weaving together her spirituality with nature skills to create a skill-set of tools for land healing and teaching students to detect and heal earth trauma. Of Spanish and Basque ancestry and born in Spain, Ana is a full-time shamanic teacher and healer, at The Hollow Bone, a private practice in Madison, Wisconsin. She offers a full range of shamanic healing forms, space clearing, and various land healing practices and offers a range of shamanic course work and her Earth Tenders Apprenticeship for more advanced practitioners.

Ana has been studying shamanic traditions since 1989 and is an international teacher of shamanic healing practices. She is a minister, public speaker, Vision Quest leader, wilderness enthusiast, ceremonialist, chef, translator and an initiated mesa carrier in the Inka tradition. Ana has studied extensively with teachers from many traditions including: Alberto Villoldo, the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, Sandra Ingerman, Angeles Arrien, Betsy Bergstrom, Tom Cowan, Dr. Larry Peters, Marko Pogaĉnik, indigenous Alto Misayoqs of the Andes, and Weather Shamanism with Nan Moss and the late David Corbin. She also studied for 6 years with Tom Brown Jr. of the Tracker School, learning tracking, survival and wilderness awareness skills.

Ana has been a lecturer for the University of Wisconsin Medical School, as well as teacher and Peruvian guide for Madison Area Technical College. She is a founding member of the Society for Shamanic Practice and was a keynote presenter for their first annual conference in 2005. Ana's work has been published in The Journal of Shamanic Practice.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Aug 17, 2018

What Astrology Says is in Store for the Second Half of 2018

For me, 2018 has passed in a whirlwind, and as we approach the end of the year I am feeling the pressure to move forward with my ambitions and goals. While I am a firm believer that we shape our own destinies, knowing how the stars will influence what is happening in the world and in my life helps me prepare and better deal with the challenges and take advantage of the opportunities that cross my path.

This may be especially important in the second half of 2018, which promises to be a time of change, regardless of your zodiac sign. Find out what your sign can expect in the coming months to help you maximise your potential as the year draws to a close.


Fire Signs – Aries, Leo and Sagittarius

While you have probably felt like you have had a lot on your plate in the first half of the year, in the latter part of 2018 you may suddenly feel like you have more time on your hands. But don’t let your energy levels and focus drop. Invest this time in hobbies and creative outlets that have taken a back seat so far this year.

But while you are powering through, don’t forget to take time to relax. With Mars in retrograde you might feel drained of energy, so implement self-care routines to help you stay on an even keel.
With Uranus moving into the Taurus constellation, you might see some big, and possibly shocking, changes at the end of 2018. While worrying will be inevitable, these are changes that you need in your life, even if you can’t see it right away. Take this as an opportunity to step back and really understand what is important to you, and how these unexpected changes might be a blessing.


Aug 14, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

The Power of Blessing

Blessings are the way to give life to that which you value, to give it strength and help it to survive and to thrive. Through blessings we can give life and protection to what is new and uncertain. They are a way to give strength to that which doesn't have strength yet, like a new story for a new world, and to give it time to take shape and build resonance. Blessings can be a formal, complex ritual process or a simple act of love, like calling on the spirits of the family totem to protect a child as she leaves for school. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she explores the power of blessings and how we can use them with intention to create change in these challenging times. Blessings call on energies of the invisible world, like elementals, nature spirits, and angels, and ask for their participation in our lives in specific ways. Whether simple or grand, our blessings are most powerful when they are an expression of a deep relationship with spirit, one that we have already cultivated with our faith, gratitude, and practice.

**This show originally aired August 30, 2016.**

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Aug 7, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

The Power of Faith

Faith does not require religion and is often stronger without it. Faith is the power to stand in the Unknown with uncertainty and discomfort and take a new step forward anyway... and then another... and then another. It is the power to do what hasn't been done and what feels impossible. We must cultivate the capacity for faith, barrels of it, or we will not be able to be the change that we seek. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, this week as she explores faith and the need to cultivate faith that does not inspire separation from others via religion, race, or nationality. To rise to the challenges of our time we must know without ever getting proof that we were born to be the medicine for the illness, disease, and unrest of our time. And that it will require faith, again and again, to surrender who we are for who we could become so that we can be that medicine. Faith is power.

**This show originally aired August 23, 2016.**

Tuesday, August 7, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Aug 6, 2018

Teal Swan: Cult or Movement?

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.



People keep calling teal the c-word, cult leader, and dammit, she's addressed this! Way back in 2014, she put this matter to rest, with a blog post addressing, point by point, the cult criteria that she in no way meets. Earlier that year I had written a blog post, myself, comparing her organization to a number of cult criteria checklists, and I came to a different conclusion. I started blogging about teal way back when, because I saw a number of red flags that warned of a cult in formation, starting with the coerced, public "confession" of her ex-boyfriend to "sociopathy." Since that time, she has grown ever more culty and her long-sought mainstream coverage has acknowledged that fact. She did not help herself with her own commentary in the recent podcast series "The Gateway," wherein she told Gizmodo reporter Jennings Brown:

I have the perfect recipe for a cult. Perfect. Recipe.

No, her foray into mainstream press coverage has not gone well and now comes an article from Vice, which puts her cult leader status and her disturbing position on suicide under a microscope. And irony of ironies (note the correct use of the term), the cult expert Vice interviewed for the article is the very one whose checklist teal used to exonerate herself in that blog post, Janja Lalich, PhD. Unlike teal, Lalich appears to have concluded that teal meets the criteria of a cult leader, a dangerous one.

Though Teal has denied cult allegations, her massive social media influence and controversial practices around depression and suicide—sometimes encouraging students to imagine their own deaths in detail—have placed her on the dangerous side of Lalich’s cult radar.

. . .

Lalich sees this kind of dramatic therapy as a way to manipulate vulnerable people. “They can get very unstable, and that’s what she’s counting on,” she said. “Cult leaders will always get their people to what I call ‘reframe their lives.’ They reinterpret their lives so they see everything from before the cult as messed up, and only by staying with the cult leader will they get straightened out.” (To this day, many members of the “Teal Tribe” say they are only alive today because of her teachings.)

Jul 31, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

The Power of Gratitude

Gratitude is a choice to see beyond the surface of instant gratification. Gratitude is not a luxury for people who get what they want, but a requirement for anyone who wants the help of spirit with the impossible. When we are without gratitude we are without perspective. The visionary capacity of the heart slips into doubt, we fixate on what is not working, and blame others for our problems. When we orient in gratitude, we are forced out of an attitude of entitlement and blame. Only then can we see the affects of our own internalized racism, sexism, and other systems of hatred and fear. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she explores the power of gratitude and why it is necessary in these challenging times. Gratitude must be made concrete through action and intent. The power engages when you show gratitude at all times, make every gesture of your life a labor of love and retribution for the gifts you receive and will receive.

**This show originally aired August 16, 2016.**

Tuesday, July 31, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jul 29, 2018

Esoterica



Beautiful photos! Full moon eclipse and Mars

Earth flew between the sun and Mars this week, so, during yesterday’s total lunar eclipse, the moon and Mars were close. Photos from the EarthSky community here.

. . .

Peter Lowenstein in Mutare, Zimbabwe, wrote: “Conditions were very good for observing the eclipse and yielded many of the usual Blood Moon photographs. However, when photographing the approaching umbra just before it had completely encroached on the moon, a beautiful vivid blue ozone fringe which lasted for just a few minutes appeared. The attached animation, which consists of 21 still photographs taken between 9:13 and 9:22 p.m. local time using highlight instead of shadow detail exposures, presents a rare and unusual view of this lunar eclipse phenomenon which usually just imparts a pale bluish tinge to the last directly illuminated portion of the moon (as is shown in the conventional picture taken at about the same time).” Read more about the ozone fringe seen during lunar eclipses.

. . .

Helio C. Vital in Saquarema, Brazil, saw the eclipse at moonrise, when the moon was still low in the sky. He wrote: “The moon was very low during totality (9 degrees above the horizon only at U3)! I first spotted the moon some 25 minutes after its rise as I had predicted. Such delay was due to the fact it was thousand of times dimmer than the usual full moon when it crossed the horizon. The moon was many times darker than Mars when I first glanced it, only 5 degrees above the horizon at 17:48 (UTC-3h). It was a therefore a dark eclipse not due to recent major volcanic eruptions, but due to the fact the moon crossed the center of Earth`s shadow where the shadow is very dark. What a nice show the totally eclipsed moon and Mars in opposition (only 7 degrees apart) put on over Saquarema! Nikon CoolPix P900 camera using its Moon Mode.”

Bottom line: Photos of the total lunar eclipse of July 27, 2018 – longest lunar eclipse of the 21st century – from the EarthSky community. During this eclipse, the planet Mars was near the moon and brighter than it had been since 2003.

Jul 24, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

What is Shamanic Healing? Some Case Studies - Part Two

Shamanic healing describes a particular set of healing forms. Many diverse cultures practice these healing forms in ways are culturally specific and still functionally the same. For the practitioner, "shamanic healing" defines not only the function of the healing form, like the retrieval of a soul part, but also the means by which the practitioner accomplishes that function. This is critically important in today's healing landscape because we all share all the same healing issues of ancient people while having invented several new ones. We need shamanic healing now more than ever. Join us this week as host and shaman, Christina Pratt, shares stories about shamanic healing in everyday life while navigating the troubled waters of appropriation, culture exchange, and listening to inner voices.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jul 19, 2018

Esoterica



Drone Reveals Massive Stonehenge-Like Circular Monument in Ireland

A drone flyby has revealed a prehistoric henge, or circular monument, in a field next to the  5,000-year-old passage tomb at Newgrange in Ireland. The new henge is the fourth one discovered near the Newgrange tomb.

The discovery comes as archaeologists, in a separate discovery, have unearthed a mysterious prehistoric structure – thought to be a ceremonial Neolithic avenue aligned with the rising and setting of the sun at the spring and fall equinoxes.

The high ground around the Newgrange passage tomb, beside the Boyne River about 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of Dublin, is already celebrated as a Neolithic "graveyard" and ceremonial center.

. . .

The finds reveal the importance of the area to its ancient inhabitants 5,000 years ago — more than 100 years before the Neolithic stone circle at Stonehenge in England was built, and about 400 years before the pyramids at Giza in Egypt, archeologists said.

Jul 17, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

How to Receive Shamanic Healing

What are the ethics for receiving shamanic healing? Much is written about ethics for practitioners, but is it really ethical to drop all the issues of your life in the lap of any healer and ask them to heal you in one session? Is it ethical to get angry about a session when the healing offered doesn’t play into the story you carry about your woundedness? Is it ever ethical to ask for healing, which is always an effort of energy expended, without offering anything in exchange for the healing energy spent on you? Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she explores the very prickly issue of the ethics for receiving shamanic healing. This week we slash expectations for magical cures and effortless life changes in the hopes of revealing how contemporary people can come to an ancient healing form prepared, informed, and ready to do what is needed to follow up responsibly.

**This show originally aired on May 12, 2015.**

Tuesday, July 17, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jul 10, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

What is Shamanic Healing?

What is a shamanic healing in the 21st Century? Host and shaman, Christina Pratt, explores this question in three parts. First we will explore the healing that comes from work with a shaman and how that integrates into all the other healing options available to you in the 21st Century. Being a contemporary consumer of health care in the USA is a challenge. In many ways working with a shaman can help you to orchestrate the rest of the options from the clarity and personal truth of your own core needs. Next we will explore the healing that comes from developing your own relationship with helping spirits. In other words, how does learning the basic shamanic skill set help you to heal your self and your life, which then reenergizes your overall well being. Finally we will explore the healing that comes from engaging in life from a shamanic perspective and the transformations that might get you to that place. Much of what ails us culturally can be healed by rediscovering our core values and deep loves, finding others who share them, and recommitting our lives to living from what has heart and meaning. This week we explore “what is shamanic healing”, what could it be for you, and how to weave that into your very contemporary life.

**This show originally aired March 8, 2011.**

Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jul 5, 2018

Esoterica



Feeding the gods: Hundreds of skulls reveal massive scale of human sacrifice in Aztec capital

Some conquistadors wrote about the tzompantli and its towers, estimating that the rack alone contained 130,000 skulls. But historians and archaeologists knew the conquistadors were prone to exaggerating the horrors of human sacrifice to demonize the Mexica culture. As the centuries passed, scholars began to wonder whether the tzompantli had ever existed.

Archaeologists at the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) here can now say with certainty that it did. Beginning in 2015, they discovered and excavated the remains of the skull rack and one of the towers underneath a colonial period house on the street that runs behind Mexico City's cathedral. (The other tower, they suspect, lies under the cathedral's back courtyard.) The scale of the rack and tower suggests they held thousands of skulls, testimony to an industry of human sacrifice unlike any other in the world. Now, archaeologists are beginning to study the skulls in detail, hoping to learn more about Mexica rituals and the postmortem treatment of the bodies of the sacrificed. The researchers also wonder who the victims were, where they lived, and what their lives were like before they ended up marked for a brutal death at the Templo Mayor.

"This is a world of information," says archaeologist Raùl Barrera Rodríguez, director of INAH's Urban Archaeology Program and leader of the team that found the tzompantli. "It's an amazing thing, and just the kind of discovery many of us had hoped for," agrees John Verano, a bioarchaeologist at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana, who studies human sacrifice. He and other researchers hope the skulls will clarify the role of large-scale human sacrifice in Mexica religion and culture—and whether, as scholars suspect, it played a key part in building their empire.

Jul 3, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

What is Shamanic Healing? Some Case Studies

Shamanic healing describes a particular set of healing forms. Many diverse cultures practice these healing forms in ways are culturally specific and still functionally the same. For the practitioner, "shamanic healing" defines not only the function of the healing form, like the retrieval of a soul part, but also the means by which the practitioner accomplishes that function. This is critically important in today's healing landscape because we all share all the same healing issues of ancient people while having invented several new ones. We need shamanic healing now more than ever. Join us this week as host and shaman, Christina Pratt, shares stories about shamanic healing in everyday life while navigating the troubled waters of appropriation, culture exchange, and listening to inner voices.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jun 30, 2018

Crazy Wisdom, Uncomfortable Questions

Crossposted from Amora Obscura



The Party

In 1975 during a seminary in Snowmass, Colorado, respected Tibetan Buddhist teacher Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, founder of Naropa University, and originator of Shambhala Buddhism, hosted a Halloween party. Two attendees, a couple named William Merwin and Dana Naone, mingled for a bit before retiring early for the night. According to witnesses, Trungpa was irritated that the couple had left early, and he ordered his followers to bring them back to the party “at any cost,” but William and Dana refused to return. According to one witness, negotiations between the guru and the couple went on for a few hours. An angry crowd of partygoers gathered outside their door, threatening them and attempting to break into their room. Tensions escalated until a chair was thrown through the glass balcony door in an attempt to force them out.

William and Dana were then escorted down to the party by Trungpa’s guards. Their guru reprimanded them, directed racially-charged remarks toward Dana, and threw a glass of sake in William's face. Then, they were asked to remove their clothes. When they refused, Trungpa ordered the guards to do it for them. They were stripped naked as Dana screamed for help, begging for someone to call the police. No one did. When another attendee tried to intervene, witnesses say that Trungpa punched him in the face. Dana alleged that Trungpa repeatedly hit the man who was stripping her because he was taking too long.

William and Dana were not the first attendees to be stripped that night. A woman named Persis McMillen had been forced out of her costume by the guards earlier in the evening, and was left feeling violated, "sick," and "really trashed out." An attendee named Jack Niland had also been targeted by Trungpa. The guards removed his clothes and threw him into a pool.

Once William and Dana were fully disrobed, the couple held each other, helpless and exposed. William Merwin allegedly implored, “Why us? Why are we the only two people in this room standing here naked in front of you?" So, the other guests removed their clothing, too. At Trungpa's behest, the dancing resumed, as if nothing had happened.

Jun 26, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Mythical Beasts and Weirdness: Working with Helping Spirits

A mythical beast is a beast that we believe never existed in physical form, like dragons, the basilisk, and the phoenix in the Harry Potter novels. But never is a long time. If they never existed, then why do similar mythical beasts appear in different stories the mythology of peoples who never spoke or met? Whether you believe they were real or are imaginary, mythical beasts are very special helping spirits to work with in shamanic altered states. "You need to pay attention," explains host and shaman, Christina Pratt, "There is a quality of being not of this world when we engage the mythical beasts. But we work with them because they remind us that our souls are not limited to this world either. Mostly we engage the mythical beasts to grow up and stop acting like our silly, violent, consumerist culture has anything to do with the real reality and why we are here.

**This show original aired June 21, 2016.**

Tuesday, June 26, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jun 19, 2018

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Mainstream — UPDATED

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.


The Gateway: Gizmodo's New Podcast About
Controversial YouTube Guru Teal Swan (TRAILER)

The Gateway is a six-part series about Teal Swan, a new brand of spiritual guru, who draws in followers with her hypnotic self-help YouTube videos aimed at people who are struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts. Some followers move to Teal’s healing center—a spiritual startup in Atenas, Costa Rica—where they produce content and manage social media accounts. Teal insists her therapy saves lives, but her critics say Teal’s death-focused dogma is dangerous.

**TRIGGER WARNING: This post deals with suicide and other awfulness.**

Episode Reviews: Episode 1, Episode 2, Episode 3, Episode 4, Episode 5, Episode 6
Further Update: Teal Tribe Kerfuffle
Another Update: In which teal lies about Cameron... again

Last fall Gizmodo gained incredible access to teal's operation. Reporter Jennings Brown not only interviewed teal several times, he was allowed to take a crew into Philia, her retreat center in Costa Rica, to observe one of her high ticket Curveball retreats. The result of his year-long investigation is a six-part podcast series that is by far the most extensive profile of teal yet by a mainstream media outlet. Days before Gizmodo first interviewed teal, she was interviewed by reporter Addison Nugent for OZY, an international, online magazine. The interview was uncomfortable for teal, which she expressed immediately, and somewhat intemperately, on her blog. Neither the resulting OZY article nor "The Gateway" podcast series — which began airing at the end of May and has aired three episodes to date — have been mentioned by teal or her team.  (In the interest of full disclosure, I was interviewed by both reporters and my statements appear in both pieces.)

The day ends.  The house falls into the dark silence of sleep.  The next morning we board a plane to Paris.  I have one more interview to do; a segment for the provocateurs section of OZY.  This interview marks the end of this European tour.  I have five minutes to change my outfit before the camera is switched on in our hotel room.  The style of this interview is not what I expected.  There are two different styles of interview, one is supportive and the other is antagonistic.  In a supportive style interview, you are already going into the interview being loved.  The entire structure of the interview is set up to make you look good.  In an antagonistic style interview, the majority of the focus is placed on challenging you.  No one holds your hands in support in this type of interview.  Instead, the interviewer gives you the opportunity to fight though the power of narration to earn people’s good opinion by putting you on the spot.  The interview started off with this: “I have interviewed spiritual leaders from everywhere and many of them have been doing this for more than 30 years and to be honest, none of them have the amount of controversy, hatred and dedicated antagonists as you do.  There is so much written against you out there in the world, they call you things like ‘the suicide catalyst’, why do you think that is?”  In an antagonistic style interview, you spend your time trying to answer questions while simultaneously trying to caretake the vulnerable aspect of you that feels targeted and like hiding under a blanket while sucking its thumb.  Sometimes the interviewer is already biased against you and is simply setting up the interview as a trap to make you look bad so their pre-conceived, concrete concept of you can then be shared by the world in order to make them feel personally validated.  But if the interviewer is genuinely non-biased, the antagonistic style of interview often leads to the best content.  Nonetheless, it is always awkward when this style of interview ends because everyone acts as if nothing just happened and everyone is really friends when in reality both you know and they know that it was an antagonistic interaction that made all parties involved socially uncomfortable.  I decided to order minestrone soup after the interview was over to comfort myself and take a bath before I fell asleep. [all emphases added]

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Plants and Elementals: Working with Helping Spirits with Daniel Abney

Elemental Spirits are often ignored as we reach for helping spirits in the vast range of land spirits, from the smallest garden sprite to the great mountain spirits and all the many manifestations between. And yet the spirits of the elements are constant teachers of balance and flow, the two fundamental energetic principles for physical health and mental well-being. Join us this week as geomancer, Daniel Abney, joins host and shaman, Christina Pratt, to explore our health and its relationship with the plant and elemental spirits. In our addictive rush to the altered states offered by the plants like ayahuasca, San Pedro, and peyote, we miss the powerful medicinal force of plants as helping spirits and the exceptionally direct and wise restorative force of the elemental spirits.

This week's guest:
Daniel Abney, LMP


Daniel discovered a strong relationship with plant spirits and elemental spirits through his exploration of shamanism and decades of dedicated spiritual practice. Today he offers himself as a geomancer and healer to the energies of the earth, the elementals, and the plant spirits who are often set awry by unconscious human action. He is a founding member of Last Mask Community and is regularly called upon to work with the earth elements at the retreat sites and ritual locations that house the Last Mask Community's work and teachings.

Daniel's massage training commenced at the Brenneke School of Massage in 1992. He has been active in advanced training and certifications since, accumulating over 3000 hours of formal massage education. Daniel's curiosity and fascination with the human body and its amazing and beautiful inter-supporting systems is the inspiration for his drive to keep studying and learning.

**This show originally aired June 14, 2016.**

Tuesday, June 19, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jun 12, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Working with the Spirits of the Land with Ana Larramendi

"Nature communicates through energy, not words. It communicates with us through signs, symbols, omens, and feelings," explains our guest Ana Larramendi of thehollowbone.com. Ana joins host, Christina Pratt, this week to share her wisdom and experience in communicating with the vast range of spirits of the land, from the smallest garden sprite to the great apu spirits of the volcanic mountains of the ring of fire. Ana cautions that our human tendency to approach all experience from an anthropocentric perspective is our greatest hurdle in communicating with our most abundant and ever present helping spirits. We need to slow down, be silent, visit regularly, and always engage with gratitude and respect. When we help the spirits of the environment around us they are able to help us live more vital, vibrant, and interconnected lives.

This week's guest:
Ana Larramendi


Ana H. Larramendi has spent her life weaving together her spirituality with nature skills to create a skill-set of tools for land healing and teaching students to detect and heal earth trauma. Of Spanish and Basque ancestry and born in Spain, Ana is a full-time shamanic teacher and healer, at The Hollow Bone, a private practice in Madison, Wisconsin. She offers a full range of shamanic healing forms, space clearing, and various land healing practices and offers a range of shamanic course work and her Earth Tenders Apprenticeship for more advanced practitioners.

Ana has been studying shamanic traditions since 1989 and is an international teacher of shamanic healing practices. She is a minister, public speaker, Vision Quest leader, wilderness enthusiast, ceremonialist, chef, translator and an initiated mesa carrier in the Inka tradition. Ana has studied extensively with teachers from many traditions including: Alberto Villoldo, the Foundation for Shamanic Studies, Sandra Ingerman, Angeles Arrien, Betsy Bergstrom, Tom Cowan, Dr. Larry Peters, Marko Pogaĉnik, indigenous Alto Misayoqs of the Andes, and Weather Shamanism with Nan Moss and the late David Corbin. She also studied for 6 years with Tom Brown Jr. of the Tracker School, learning tracking, survival and wilderness awareness skills.

Ana has been a lecturer for the University of Wisconsin Medical School, as well as teacher and Peruvian guide for Madison Area Technical College. She is a founding member of the Society for Shamanic Practice and was a keynote presenter for their first annual conference in 2005. Ana's work has been published in The Journal of Shamanic Practice.

**This show originally aired June 7, 2016.**

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Jun 10, 2018

Teal Swan Down Under



Her ladyship Teal Swan recently voyaged to Australia as part of her international career as a spiritual leader on the world stage. She met with some challenges, courtesy of Australian customs agents, but such is the price of fame.

Ironically my trip here this time started on that note.  It turns out that we didn’t procure the correct type of visa for this trip.  I’ve become big enough that like any celebrity, I will be made an example of if anything is not exactly as it should be.  As a result, I had the worst experience of my international career upon arrival.  After a 15 hour flight, I was separated from the rest of the team and I was taken to a white jail like room with a window looking out at a collection of officers all debating what to do with me and making phone calls and reviewing security tapes.  For hours, I was interrogated, cross-examined, threatened and then shamed for not knowing better in my position as a ‘leader of something that is so much bigger than myself’.  I ended up in tears.  I came so close to not being let into the country, sent back to the US and being banned for years from re-entering, it is actually mind blowing that someone made the final call to let me in.  It is so strange to experience the contrast that comes with fame.  On the one hand some people and some places give you special treatment and special welcome.  On the other hand, some people and places oppose you as if you are a monster.  Being treated like a criminal for hours upon arrival was a bad way to start the trip.  It was a genuinely traumatizing experience, not just for me but for the members of the team who traveled with me.  It was one of those defining moments where you have no option but to move up to a different level.  I can no longer travel to any part of the world without involvement from immigrations agents and special invitations.  I so hate this aspect of the society we have created.  After that experience, I completely get the fear that the Mexican immigrants in the United States live with every day.  It is a fear that no one should ever have to live with.

I'm pleased to report that Mistress was able to turn that situation around and went on to have a lovely, successful trip. She was even able to "meet and greet" attendees of her workshop "The Mirror." It is always amazing to witness the way she absorbs energy from her adoring fans. Even on such an exhausting trip, she emerged as lovely and renewed as Lady Bathory. But it does not come without risk. Mistress has many enemies and such events must be scrupulously vetted by her security team. Mistress marshals on, through thick and thin, because, as she says, hers "is a mission worth dying for."

Jun 5, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Deities and Archetypes: Working as Helping Spirits with Langston Kahn

Deities have a long history of engaging as helping spirits with people in shamanic altered states. What does it mean when a deity enters your journey scape? How do we navigate cultivating right relationship with a being who has a living tradition and long history with humans, expects certain protocol we may not know or understand, and has their own agency? And how do we know the difference between big, intense energies like deities and archetypes and why should we bother with them? Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, and her guest Langston Kahn of Occupy-Your-Heart.com, as they discuss how to navigate right relationship with deities and archetypes, the distinction, the cautions, and ultimately, the gifts that they offer to those who are willing to step out of the safe constructs of the mind and enter the deep waters and intense currents of a nonordinary life.

This week's guest:
Langston Kahn


Langston Kahn is a shamanic practitioner specializing in emotional clearing and radical transformation. He stands firmly at the crossroads, his practice informed by the western modality of Inner Relationship Focusing, initiations into traditions of the African Diaspora, the contemporary shamanic tradition of The Last Mask Center and the guidance of his helping spirits and ancestors weaving it all together.

Langston has studied and facilitated Inner Relationship Focusing, developed by Ann Weiser Cornell for the last 8 years. He has completed 5 years of training with Christina Pratt in the Cycle of Transformation and also serves on the leadership council for the Last Mask Community, a community of contemporary people striving to live in alignment with ancient shamanic beliefs and principles in a way that answers the unique challenges of our time. Additionally, he holds initiations in several traditions of the African Diaspora.

Langston, who is centered in New York City offers sessions in emotional clearing and shamanic healing and classes both in person and online.

**This show originally aired on May 31, 2016.**

Tuesday, June 5, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

May 29, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Ancestors and Descendants: Working with Helping Spirits

Why would I want a working relationship with my ancestors when I can’t stand my own relations? Fair question when so much addiction, depression, social pressure, and sexual dysfunction gets handed down generation to generation. What we fail to understand is that our break with our Ancestral Helping Spirits is in large part why we experience such illness and abuse of power in our family lines. Join us this week as host and shaman, Christina Pratt, explores how we cultivate a strong working relationship with true ancestral helping spirits, avoid ghosts, use our relationship with our ancestors to mend our feelings of alienation, isolation, and loneliness. As we learn from those who have gone before us we can properly reach to the descendants to learn to ask for more from life and more from our selves.

**This show originally aired on May 23, 2016.**

Tuesday, May 29, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

May 27, 2018

Esoterica



A controversial study has a new spin on the otherworldliness of the octopus

Octopuses are strange, smart creatures that certainly seem alien—what with the tentacles, camouflage, and shape-shifting skills. Still, the idea that they actually came from outer space would seem to fall strictly into the realm of sci-fi; an update of HP Lovecraft’s Cthulhu, say.

But in these interesting times, real life reads like fiction. Recently, a group of 33 scientists worldwide—including molecular immunologist Edward Steele and astrobiologist Chandra Wickramasinghe—published a paper suggesting, in all seriousness, that octopuses may indeed be aliens.

The paper, published in the March issue of the the journal Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, is controversial, obviously, and the vast majority of scientists would disagree. But the paper is still worthy of discussion—for one, as a thought exercise, because outlandish ideas are often initially rejected. And in provoking us with seemingly bizarre theories, it forces us to acknowledge that there are aspects of life on Earth for which classic evolutionary theory as yet has no explanation.

. . .

The transformative genes leading from the consensus ancestral nautilus to the common cuttlefish to squid to the common octopus can’t be found in any pre-existing life form, the authors say.

May 22, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Working with Helping Spirits in the Age of Entitlement

Direct communication with our helping spirits is one of the greatest gifts in the reintroduction of shamanism into contemporary life. Yet in this age of social media and everyday twitter fights, people have all but lost the art of honorable, sincere, and heart-felt communication. Your helping spirits can’t hear your whining, don’t care how many people are following you, and see dishonor in the entitlement you take for granted. How do we cultivate a strong working relationship with our helping spirits when we don’t even know how to communicate with each other without our Smart phones. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she explores the simplicity of working with our helping spirits, ways to cultivate a strong working relationship with spirit in everyday, “normal” life, and how learning to discern with your helping spirits can restore your trust in the path of your heart.

**This show originally aired on May 17, 2016.**

Tuesday, May 22, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

May 15, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

What Does Shamanic Practice Look Like?

Contemporary shamanic practice looks different depending on the tradition, cosmology, or beliefs that guide your practice. The variations in authentic shamanic practice are a rich and complex field of good work being done today. At the same time there is a line for most practitioners when their early experimentation and uncertain dabbling became a way of living that they could not back out of. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she responds to multiple questions from listeners about what contemporary shamanic practice can look like. How do we hold space at work or in our unwieldy extended families? How do we practice without community? How do we practice in a community that doesn’t? How do we maintain balance sufficient to practice when contemporary life seems determined to distract, deny, and disillusion? How do we deepen our practice with all the demands on our time to become the practitioners needed by our time?

**This show originally aired on May 10, 2016.**

Tuesday, May 15, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

May 11, 2018

Esoterica



Did the dystopian ‘Matrix’ movies predict the rise of Trump?

“Welcome to the desert of the real,” Morpheus (Laurence Fishburne) ostentatiously tells Neo (Keanu Reeves) in an important scene not quite halfway through “The Matrix,” the groundbreaking 1999 science fiction film written and directed by Lana and Lilly Wachowski. (Who were then known, let us note, as Andy and Larry, the “Wachowski Brothers.”) Neo has of course taken the “red pill” and discovered that what he took to be reality is actually a computer simulation, used by a malignant machine intelligence to enslave the human race.

As most fans of the “Matrix” movies surely know, Morpheus’ expression has both a prehistory and a long-tail legacy. My point here, however, is that “The Matrix” and the currents of postmodern theory and dystopian sci-fi that informed it didn’t just predict the future but also seemingly shaped it.

We’re all lost in the desert of the real now. We all believe we took the red pill — but how can we be sure it wasn’t a placebo? Many of us, like the treacherous rebel played by Joe Pantoliano in the movie, long to climb back inside the Matrix, where we can live within the comforting illusions of yesteryear. But there’s no door that leads there, and no there on the other side of the nonexistent door.

That phrase comes from an extended metaphor in Jean Baudrillard’s “Simulacra and Simulation,” an influential (if borderline unreadable) work of critical theory that was partly an inspiration for “The Matrix” and partly just a prop. Neo has a copy on his bookshelf early in the film, or at least he appears to: In a joke Baudrillard may or may not have appreciated, the book has actually been hollowed out and used to conceal a disk of illicit data. For that matter, it only exists inside the Matrix — it’s a fake book in a fake universe.

May 8, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

The Body Deva with Mary Shutan

Our bodies hold the inherent knowledge of how to heal. We can access this knowledge through the body deva, or the spiritual consciousness of the body. Author, teacher, and healer, Mary Mueller Shutan, joins us this week to share her new book, “The Body Deva,” a healing system that arises from decades of study and practice in healing. Shutan explains, “Spirituality should bring us closer to our bodies, closer to our lives. We should be able to become healthier…and more embodied if we are engaged on a spiritual path. Learning to work with the spiritual consciousness of your body, the body deva, will allow you to do so.”

This week's guest:
Mary Shutan


Mary Mueller Shutan is a Spiritual Healer who focuses on helping others work with their spiritual awakenings, spiritual callings, and psychic abilities. She is a painter and the author of The Spiritual Awakening Guide: Kundalini, Psychic Abilities, and The Conditioned Layers of Reality from Findhorn Press. Her focus in all of her work is on the understanding that the spiritual is part of our daily lives, that we are meant to have emotions as well as physical bodies, and that we can have deep compassion and love for even the darkest aspects of ourselves.

Since she was a child Mary has been highly sensitive and creative, with the ability to see, sense, and interact with the spiritual realms. Over a ten year period she focused a tremendous amount energy into finding out how to work with her sensitivities and abilities. This led her through four years of Chinese Medicine school and certifications in Upledger-style and Biodynamic CranioSacral therapy, Asian Body Therapy, Massage Therapy, Zero Balancing, Reiki and Energy Work, Rootwork, and Meditation. Mary also has intensive education in different forms of bodywork, energy work, folk magic, occult practices, and shamanic/spiritual healing.

Mary is particularly known for her distance healing work. Her focus is on Dark or Middle World work– trauma and emotional release, spiritual clearing and protection, spirit release, past life and ancestral healing. She also teaches individuals who are called to this type of work to become safe, effective, and powerful practitioners.

Mary runs a personal blog (www.maryshutan.com/blog) that covers a variety of thought-provoking spiritual subjects and offers email based programs and individual consultations worldwide to people experiencing Kundalini, Spiritual Awakenings, Psychic Abilities, Shamanic callings, and other spiritual experiences to learn how to understand and navigate their experiences and abilities.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

May 1, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Accessing Your Four Wisdom Bodies

Shamanic skills allow us to engage with the world around us, each other, and ourselves in a nonordinary way that integrates intelligence and intimacy, vision and practicality. Shamanic skills are unique in that to use them is to engage all of our four wisdom bodies: the mind, the heart, the spirit, and the body simultaneously. There are many diverse and powerful modalities to practice and most don't allow you access to all four wisdom bodies, except at the highest levels of mastery. Join us this week as host and shaman, Christina Pratt, explores not only how we can access all the wisdom available to us, but why it is so important to see ourselves, our world, and our shamanism through something more than our mind's eye. As one of our greatest minds said, "Problems cannot be solved with the same mind set that created them."

**This show originally aired February 2, 2016.**

Tuesday, May 1, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Apr 28, 2018

Esoterica



Yoga's Culture of Sexual Abuse: Nine Women Tell Their Stories

Modern yoga has been fraught with stories of charismatic male yoga teachers who promoted their teachings as spiritually pure and later abused, or otherwise took advantage of, students who believed their mentors were gurus or saints. In 1910, an eccentric American yogi named Pierre Bernard (a.k.a. “The Omnipotent Oom”) was tried for having “inveigled and enticed” one woman into sexual relations—the charges were later dropped, and the incident ultimately brought him infamy. Decades later, in 1983, Swami Muktananda was the subject of an article that chronicled sexual activities he was alleged to have had with young female students; a New Yorker story later reported that at least 100 people believed the allegations to be true but were afraid of being ostracized by the community. That same decade, Yogi Bhajan’s 3HO Foundation, commonly called the “Happy, Healthy, and Holy Organization,” settled several assault lawsuits against its leader, including one case of rape and confinement brought by a woman who entered his circle at age eleven.

In 1991, Swami Satchidananda, who opened Woodstock by leading the crowd in a chant of “Hari Om,” was the focus of protest after allegations of sexual misconduct against female students surfaced; he was never charged and died a decade after the allegations were brought forward. In 1994, “Meditation in Motion” innovator Amrit Desai was removed as spiritual director of the Kripalu Center in western Massachusetts over allegations of abuse of authority and sexual misconduct. That same year, a student sued another prominent yoga guru, Swami Rama, for sexual misconduct; after his death, a jury awarded her almost $2 million, in 1997.

It goes on. In 2012, John Friend, who is a student of both Swami Muktananda and [Krishna Pattabhi] Jois’s main rival, B. K. S. Iyengar, stepped down from his All-American Anusara Yoga brand after allegations surfaced that he had been sleeping with his female students—renewing a conversation within the yoga community about power dynamics and ethical guidelines. In 2016, “hot yoga” pioneer Bikram Choudhury abandoned a fleet of luxury cars and fled his home in California, facing $6.5 million in damages owed in a sexual-harassment lawsuit; a judge later issued a warrant. Separately, Choudhury is facing six lawsuits alleging sexual assault and sexual harassment. (His current whereabouts are unknown, and there is still a warrant out for his arrest.)

Apr 24, 2018

Smallville Star Arrested for Role in Branding Cult

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.



Keith Raniere may be discovering that there's a downside to following the Scientology model of recruiting celebrities into your cult. For whatever credibility and popularity they may initially bring to your organization, if things go pear-shaped, fame becomes infamy. A few weeks ago, the NXIVM founder was extradited from Mexico on sex trafficking and other charges. There was a flurry of news coverage, as noted here. But when "Smallville" star Allison Mack was arrested on Friday, a media firestorm ensued.

This is not the first time Raniere's cultivation of the rich and famous has backfired. It may be what put him on the road to ruin. India Oxenberg, an aspiring actress from a royal bloodline, must have seemed like a real get, until her much more famous mother Catherine Oxenberg went public. Her plea for her daughter's safety was covered by the New York Times, People, Megyn Kelly TODAY, and 20/20. And suddenly that "branding cult" was water cooler talk.

The unflinching, in-depth coverage in the media also forced New York authorities to begin taking complaints seriously, that they had previously dismissed as "consensual." Roughly six months later, NXIVM's most famous member is facing 15 years to life and so is Keith Raniere.

Previous to this graphic, public outing, Raniere's organization had been chugging along pretty quietly in Albany, making millions, and silencing former members with lawsuits and intimidation tactics, thanks to the very deep pockets of Seagram's heiresses Clare and Sara Bronfman. Although their wealth and social position had also brought him a spate of bad press. But suing your victims into silence and bankruptcy is a less effective tactic when some of them are famous and well-heeled, something Scientology is learning the hard way with its futile attacks on Leah Remini.

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Peace, Justice, and Shamanic Activism

Traditionally shamans are activists. It is the role of the shaman to see where the people have lapsed in their ways for living well. Working with spirit the shaman proactively guides the necessary learning-from-mistakes and collective movement of the people forward to re-establish good relationship with all living things. Shamanic work has always been this work of transformation and rebalancing. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, as she explores this responsibility and challenge for contemporary practitioners. It remains our role and our responsibility to take action to manifest needed changes for the good of all living things, but how do we do that in our real world, real time?

Tuesday, April 24, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Apr 17, 2018

Cafe



Around the Web, Around the World


"Why Shamanism Now?" with Christina Pratt

Getting Unstuck: Finding the Vein of Gold, Part Three

We all experience stuckness at some point in life and there is an art to getting out of it. It begins with changing our chemistry, literally so that we can step out of our habit of being who we are. The next step is to have the courage and cunning to identify that thing we are doing that is too "normal" or "ordinary" to bother to see anymore. In the deeper "why" of that particular blindness is the vein of gold. Join host and shaman, Christina Pratt, this week as she explores how we find that vein of gold, the untapped resource that allows us to unfold the origami of our particular stuckness. In the resulting intimacy with self, we become the person who can access the latent power in our mess and redirect it into living our deeper purpose.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018 at 11:00 AM Pacific

Log on to Listen
Why Shamanism Now? on Co-Creator Network
Questions? Comments? Call: 1-512-772-1938

All episodes are now available in the iTunes Podcast Library.

Apr 10, 2018

Tony Robbins: Rape Apologist

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.



On the Ides of March, Tony Robbins did one of his pricey "Unleash the Power Within" events in San Jose. What he unleashed instead was a firestorm. Right after the event, video surfaced of Robbins mansplaining the perils of the #metoo movement to a sex abuse survivor. It quickly disappeared, most likely quashed by his team. Their damage control effort seemed to be working... until it wasn't.

Late last week I noticed that the video had resurfaced. The original footage is taken from a distance and it's a little hard to make out, but a YouTube version is found here. A cleaner, edited version was
posted to Facebook here.

On Saturday Tarana Burke's scathing response to the video was published on the Huffington Post. In under 24 hours, after weeks of trying to bury it, Robbins finally addressed the incident publicly and issued an apology — something he swore in profane terms he would not do, during the altercation. (I think it bears mentioning that Robbins has enjoyed a lot of positive coverage on the Huffington Post, over the years, and a very friendly relationship with founder Ariana Huffington.)

“My comments failed to reflect the respect I have for everything Tarana Burke and the #MeToo movement has achieved,” Robbins said in the statement. “I apologize for suggesting anything other than my profound admiration for the #MeToo movement.”

“It is clear that I still have much to learn,” he added.

Well, that last statement is certainly true.


Opinions and ideas expressed in the comments on this page
belong the people who stated them. Management takes no
editorial responsibility for the content of public comments.