A couple of threads on this board have brought to mind an experience I had last year with a "spiritual advisor"/shaman and maybe it would be
illuminating to recount it.
After a series of illnesses and general bad luck I had decided to consult a shaman. After trying the "when the student is ready, the teacher will
come" route with no luck, I decided to open up my "Natural Living" New Age directory and hire one. I found a woman who billed herself as a
spiritual advisor/shaman/healer/'psychotherapist"(!). She lived in a hip, bohemian part of town, had a rich clientele, and seemed on the up-and-up.
The free consultation I had with her on the phone convinced me that finally I found the person who would "clean my soul" and put me on the right
Her waiting room and office was amazing--full of crystals, Buddhas, angels, Indian totems, and incense. Her bookshelves were stocked with many New Age
books I was familiar with, as well as a display of one she wrote herself. In the first session, it was revealed to me that my main problem was that I
was a "star child," probably a "walk-in," who was caught in a realm of "mundanes." My family were evil and irredeemable and I should never speak
to them again--which wouldn't be so hard, because they were not truly my family. My Goth collection of books and dolls were Evil and a porthole to
demonic forces and I should through them out immediately without hesitation. I should also throw out anything colored black or that represented
"disharmony." Then she got a "psychic flash" from her "spirit guide" that I would really need to come in twice a week in order to keep the
"dark forces" at bay. At $250 a session ( a lot, but it's around the ballpark for the more well-known "advisors") I told her there was no way I
could do it. So we made an appointment for the next week.
In the interim, I threw out all the "dark influence" items from my apartment. I am telling you from experience that absoultely nothing changed,
except for the fact that my kick-@$$ Living Dead Doll collection in in a landfill somewhere.
At the second session, we did some "hypnotherapy," which gave me a series of panic attacks. My spiritual advisor said it was probably the "dark
forces" who didn't want to relinquish their hold on me. She also told me that my mother was psychically attacking her since last week, and that
whatever I did to not give her information of where she works or her name. She also said that my throwing out all my dark items had started a
"spiritual war" and that it was very necessary to see her twice a week--rather, her "spirit guide" told her this. I had been around enough
'spiritually advanced' guru-in-their-own-mind types to see the writing on the wall with this lady. It was depressing, frankly. But I felt pressured
to do aonther session. I'd give it one more try.
I never made it to the third session. I just couldn't bear to face her--mainly because I was going to fire her. I should have fired her last session!
Chicken! So I had a "phone session" with her. After about 15 minutes, I just blurted out that I couldn't see her any more. Her response? She
seriously asked me if the "dark forces" had told me this. I am not kidding. I said I just didn't think the sessions were helping. She told me that
she sensed from the very first session that I had some "dark aura" around me and that frankly it made her uncomfortable. She said that I was so
flush with these dark forces that there wouldn't be anything she could have done for me even if we continued the sessions. Yes, gentlemen and
ladies--I was told that I "made my choice" to lie in bed with the forces of evil. Then she inquired about the payment for the session.
Before you think this was just some gypsy-storefront type of deal and this was an obvious swindler from the word "go," this was a Sylvia Browne-type
grandmotherly lady with an upscale clientele, people in her waiting room, certificates on her wall, etc. To a person who is open to New Age
experiences she seemed pretty legit. But in the end, she fell into the pattern of so many other guru types that I have known.
Things to watch out for if you decide to hire a spiritual advisor/shaman:
1) If the shaman's "spirit guide" tells him or her that you need to spend more money/increase # of sessions/undergo expensive "treatments" in
order to be well.
2) You are told that you are an advanced form of life and that's why you are having problems with others.
3) An attempt is made to convince you to cut off ties with friends and or family--I believe this is the first step to brainwashing. Also, if they tell
you not to tell anybody you're seeing this person.
4) Absolutist thinking. Talk of grand spiritual battles of "good" versus "evil." If you hear such talk you might well want to inquire what exactly
consitutes "good" and "bad".
5) Hypnotherapy, channeling, and other mind-f**ks. If you want hypnotherapy, don't go to a "shaman," go to a licensed hypnotherapist and/or
somebody with a more objective view on life.
6) Also be aware that if you reject this spiritual advisor they will (probably out of spite) f**k with your mind even more by telling you that the
reason you rejected them was that you're being "possessed"/influenced by the "dark forces." I've never met a guru-type that didn't consider
those who disagreed with him or her in league with some sort of evil forces.
Also, it goes without saying that you shouldn't spend more than $75 tops on a "spiritual advisor." Or you could buy a membership at a gym or
purchase an excercise bike and let your endorphins fix your mood up a little.
Let's be careful out there people. Wanting to spiritually develop is fine but remember that there are a lot of sharks.
--The Amazing Cassi