The ugly truth about Native American "shamans," "wisdom keepers" and "spiritual teachers"

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posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 12:26 PM
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Originally posted by sylvie

Originally posted by Advantage
TY OP


Been saying that for a long time. Even being NDN myself with my own mom still on rez, people here on ATS will argue the "shaman" bs with me if I dare call it exactly what it is... and mention these rez dog women shamans being flakes.
I am hoping a certain friend will stop by this thread ( same tribe as me) and let you in on his friend who is a "shaman" and has a special white folks ceremony and following. PT Barnum must have been a genius concerning psychology because no truer words were ever spoken... sucka born every minute. The thing is, they are willing suckers. They WANT to believe this crap and will vehemently fight you when you try to save them from their own ignorance. IMO ( now that Im old, because I did not always feel this way) let them live their fantasy.... what can you do besides offer the truth and let them decide on their own?

Again, thanks for doing the research and making such a complete thread. Maybe you can prevent some dopes from getting fried in a "lodge" this time around due to stupidity or prevent some from shelling out big bucks to these so-called holy men/women. If there isnt a demand for this crap by non-NDNs there wont be as many out there making a mockery of my culture.


Thanks for being so lenient with us, Advantage. ;o)


great responce and reply.

so, to bad i try and keep it honest.
i could claim membership of a navajo clan, put on a bandana and feather and give tours of the medicine wheels and vortexes of sedona. travel by jeep tours of course, and give all the wanna'bees indian sounding names.
but, then again, it's nothing new, it's been the way in sedona for many years.




posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 12:56 PM
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Haven't read through all the replies yet--I'm definitely gonna--but S&F for an important and well-done OP. And: Thank You! When I saw that other pro-Crowther OP yesterday it made my blood rise too.

I spent the better part of 4 years moving amongst that crowd. I wasn't there as a wide-eyed believer but I did keep an open mind. I bet I know 20 "Shaman" and 5 times that many light workers. Myriad channellers too.

The access I enjoyed included spending time with some of the best-selling authors and 'guru' types of the new age movement. I've never seen more neurotic folk in my life than those at the 'top' of this field. The Celestine Prophecy? Please believe me when I tell you folk like that have NOTHING to teach you about being a more peaceful and "connected to the Source" human-being.

Whenever I've deeply considered the philosophy of another human being, I don't just listen, but look at their life. Time & time & time again the rhetoric was lofty and beautiful but the reality of their lives--to put it simply--was not.

Don't get me wrong: I still love and occasionally see some of my friends from that group, but I'm convinced that when it comes to metaphysical philosophy, they don't have a grip on anything that's truly making a positive difference in their lives.

I've HEARD folk tell me over and over how positive their belief system has been in their life, but when the rubber meets the road I couldn't really see it.

From prosperity gurus having coniptions because their 'students' weren't paying their re$pects to them, to intentional communities preaching peace & love but falling out and arguing over the tiniest things...I never saw anything that would suggest these folk were doing anything more than grasping at the straws of a "feel-good" philosophy.

Again: Thank you, OP for bravely and responsibly sharing your experience and knowledge.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:11 PM
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www.aics.org...

Declaration of War
Against Exploiters of Lakota Spirituality

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First of all; We (meaning A.I.C.S.) did not write this declaration.
It was written by Lakota/Dakota/Nakota Spiritual people.
We do however support, and we encourage others to support, each and every word written here.
Elders don't get around the internet like we do, so they are only partly aware of all the exploitation going on. Support those who wrote these words making it known to the exploiters - we know who and what they are, we do not approve, we are watching, and we are notifying others. Above all else, BOYCOTT the fakes and make sure your friends do not fall victim to them!



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At the Lakota Summit V, an international gathering of US and Canadian Lakota, Dakota and Nakota Nations, about 500 representatives from 40 different tribes and bands of the Lakota unanimously passed a "Declaration of War Against Exploiters of Lakota Spirituality." The following declaration was unanimously passed on June 10, 1993
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Declaration of War
WHEREAS we are the conveners of an ongoing series of comprehensive forums on the abuse and exploitation of Lakota spirituality; and

WHEREAS we represent the recognized traditional spiritual leaders, traditional elders, and grassroots advocates of the Lakota people; and

WHEREAS for too long we have suffered the unspeakable indignity of having our most precious Lakota ceremonies and spiritual practices desecrated, mocked and abused by non-Indian "wannabes," hucksters, cultists, commercial profiteers and self-styled "New Age shamans" and their followers; and

WHEREAS with horror and outrage we see this disgraceful expropriation of our sacred Lakota traditions has reached epidemic proportions in urban areas throughout the country; and

WHEREAS our precious Sacred Pipe is being desecrated through the sale of pipestone pipes at flea markets, powwows, and "New Age" retail stores; and

WHEREAS pseudo-religious corporations have been formed to charge people money for admission into phony "sweatlodges" and "vision quest" programs; and

WHEREAS sacrilegious "sundances" for non-Indians are being conducted by charlatans and cult leaders who promote abominable and obscene imitations of our sacred Lakota sundance rites; and

WHEREAS non-Indians have organized themselves into imitation "tribes," assigning themselves make-believe "Indian names" to facilitate their wholesale expropriation and commercialization of our Lakota traditions; and

WHEREAS academic disciplines have sprung up at colleges and universities institutionalizing the sacrilegious imitation of our spiritual practices by students and instructors under the guise of educational programs in "shaminism;" and

WHEREAS non-Indian charlatans and "wannabes" are selling books that promote the systematic colonization of our Lakota spirituality; and

WHEREAS the television and film industry continues to saturate the entertainment media with vulgar, sensationalist and grossly distorted representations of Lakota spirituality and culture which reinforce the public's negative stereotyping of Indian people and which gravely impair the self-esteem of our children; and

WHEREAS individuals and groups involved in "the New Age Movement," in "the men's movement," in "neo-paganism" cults and in "shamanism" workshops all have exploited the spiritual traditions of our Lakota people by imitating our ceremonial ways and by mixing such imitation rituals with non-Indian occult practices in an offensive and harmful pseudo-religious hodgepodge; and

WHEREAS the absurd public posturing of this scandalous assortment of psuedo-Indian charlatans, "wannabes," commercial profiteers, cultists and "New Age shamans" comprises a momentous obstacle in the struggle of traditional Lakota people for an adequate public appraisal of the legitimate political, legal and spiritual needs of real Lakota people; and

WHEREAS this exponential exploitation of our Lakota spiritual traditions requires that we take immediate action to defend our most precious Lakota spirituality from further contamination, desecration and abuse;


THEREFORE WE RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:
1. We hereby and henceforth declare war against all persons who persist in exploiting, abusing and misrepresenting the sacred traditions and spiritual practices of our Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people.

2. We call upon all our Lakota, Dakota and Nakota brothers and sisters from reservations, reserves, and traditional communities in the United States and Canada to actively and vocally oppose this alarming take-over and systematic destruction of our sacred traditions.

3. We urge our people to coordinate with their tribal members living in urban areas to identify instances in which our sacred traditions are being abused, and then to resist this abuse, utilizing whatever specific tactics are necessary and sufficient --for example demonstrations, boycotts, press conferences, and acts of direct intervention.

4. We especially urge all our Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota people to take action to prevent our own people from contributing to and enabling the abuse of our sacred ceremonies and spiritual practices by outsiders; for, as we all know, there are certain ones among our own people who are prostituting our spiritual ways for their own selfish gain, with no regard for the spiritual well-being of the people as a whole.

5. We assert a posture of zero-tolerance for any "white man's shaman" who rises from within our own communities to "authorize" the expropriation of our ceremonial ways by non-Indians; all such "plastic medicine men" are enemies of the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people.

6. We urge traditional people, tribal leaders, and governing councils of all other Indian nations, to join us in calling for an immediate end to this rampant exploitation of our respective American Indian sacred traditions by issuing statements denouncing such abuse; for it is not the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people alone whose spiritual practices are being systematically violated by non-Indians.

7. We urge all our Indian brothers and sisters to act decisively and boldly in our present campaign to end the destruction of our sacred traditions, keeping in mind our highest duty as Indian people: to preserve the purity of our precious traditions for our future generations, so that our children and our children's children will survive and prosper in the sacred manner intended for each of our respective peoples by our Creator.

Wilmer Stampede Mesteth; (Oglala Lakota); Traditional Spiritual Leader & Lakota Culture Instructor; Oglala Lakota College, Pine Ridge, South Dakota

Darrell Standing Elk; (Sicangu Lakota); President, Center for the SPIRIT, San Fancisco, California, & Pine Ridge, South Dakota

Phyllis Swift Hawk; (Kul Wicasa Lakota); Tiospaye Wounspe Waokiye; Wanblee, South Dakota



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:30 PM
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Painful to watch,

Most of the true spirit workers - shamans, medicine people, pathfinders, wizards and alchemists of old have been lost.

But some still remain in a distilled form, as if in a cruel form of homeopathy for working with spirit.

I know many native elders who are taking caucasians as their students because there is simply no interest left among the youth of their tribe to learn the wisdom before they die.

A native elder told me 2 weeks ago

"We have drowned our wisdom and our people in alcohol, few remain to speak sober words from spirit"

There are many frauds out there, and there are many who appear fraudulent but are not.

I've always been skeptical of little grandmother, but I'm not about to libel and slander her because a youtube video told me to do so.

There is a lack of spirituality in the west, nearly 30 million people on anti depressants, nearly as many without work.

Line of the month America: ANXIETY IS GOOD FOR YOU!

People en mass are seeking something beyond the other side of this world for the first time in a long time.

When you exist in the system of money, you have to pay for everything. Shaman or medicine people existing in the system have to charge for their ceremonies, for their services if they are reaching out within the system.

There are many shaman who do not have fees, who work in their homes outside town accept donations for their services, who accept cooked food, gifts, some type of reciprocation for the energy that they have expended.

The ultimate goal of one who works with spirit is to restore balance to the world of man in order to prevent its tailspin nosedive which threatens to bring down the rest of the world with it.

Do not be so quick to judge all shaman, there will come a time when the hour seems most dark, and it is many of these souls who will stand apart from the masses and remind them that no matter how dark the world seems;

Everything will be alright.

But right now, everything is not alright,

We all have work to do.

-GM
edit on 9-12-2011 by Gradius Maximus because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:42 PM
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reply to post by Gradius Maximus
 


i like it.
but, on the other hand, as a taos puebloan elder told me this summer while visiting.
if you look around you, you will notice that the 'warriors' of old are returning.
it is part our genetics returning to the way it should be, and part our fight to stop the influence of white culture.

it can not be denied that the 'warrior class' was basically culled through eugenics.
all that was left for generations was the weak and infirm.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:42 PM
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Interesting thread, thanks for bringing it up.

It's difficult sometimes to explain to folks the actuality of our spirituality and its expression/obligations.

I don't consider myself a healer, although sometimes I can heal spirits.

I'm an elder, I suppose, but being Chiricahua Apache, I don't have much of a tribe left, as we have no res and are few and scattered now, so I'm not sure what it counts for.

I was taught many things by my grandmother, like how to respect the world, how to hunt, how to disappear, how to speak with animals and plants.

When I was young and hiking in the hills once, angry and hurt, grieving over the lost rituals of my forebears, the land answered me. It soothed my spirit and reminded me that rituals are ways of connecting, that they are appropriate for a given time and space, and it is natural for them to lose power and fade. New rituals will be found to take their place if your heart is open to them and your spirit listens. They may take a lifetime to emerge and be understood, but they will come.

I claim no powers as a shaman, medicine man, or whatever other label you wish to designate such people by, but on occasion I am approached by strangers and asked for help.

For example, sitting at a bus stop one day a woman approached me very respectfully and told me she could see I was a powerful curandaro, begged me to help her daughter. I firmly told her she was mistaken, but she pleaded her case to the point where I finally decided to humor her for a bit and asked what the problem was, intending to offer advice to see a doctor. As it turned out, it had to do with relationship balancing, jealousy, and anger. As she told me her tale, I felt a push in my spirit to help her.

At the appointed time I went to her home with eagle feathers, sweetgrass, and sage. I spoke with the people involved and then went outside and opened my spirit in the four directions, praying for guidance. After some time the words of healing came to me, and I knew what to say to each, which I did and offered what blessings I could washing them with smoke and cleansing their spirits as best I could. My pay for this service was a meal and $40. I didn't ask for or expect the money, and refused it several times, but they insisted that they needed to pay for their honor's sake, so I accepted it. I performed a few more things for them later, but it felt wrong to take money for it, so I didn't. So far as I know my efforts were successful and helped them.

Another time friends asked me to officiate at the renewal of their wedding vows. I was terrified at the prospect, but they were insistent, so I trusted I would find the words somehow. When the day came I went into their yard and opened my spirit to the directions as usual and asked for help and guidance. After about a half hour or so, I felt a peacefulness enter my spirit and I knew the words would come. I went in and performed the ceremony and made everyone cry. They thanked me profusely afterwards and told me they knew they were truly one as never before.



I give aid and advice to those who seek me out, sometimes they will give me something for it, most times it is just thanks. I will always take time to listen and to heal those spirits who ask it of me. Many people have found their way to my doorstep in need of one thing or another. I help where I can for the sake of helping. Sometimes I am treated with an awe I don't feel I deserve, as it makes me uncomfortable, but I'm told I can be intimidating when I'm just being myself.

In my culture, nearly everyone has a power of some sort or another, a relationship with power. It is kind of hard to explain because the concept means much more than what the word implies in English. It is a two-way relationship, and you can argue with your power and annoy it if you aren't careful, even lose it. It carries obligations. One of my little powers is that I can find stuff that people lose, like earring backs and keys. It doesn't work for me, though, I lose stuff all the time and can't find it. I have bigger ones that involve the spirit, but those I don't discuss except when they are applicable. No big though, because like I said, nearly everyone has some of one sort or another. The obligation part is to use it when it demands to be used, as in the case I cited above.

It's a complex thing and can't be taught, exactly. You can be shown a path and a doorway, perhaps, but it is up to the individual to examine both in the context of their spirit and willingness to accept the responsibilities of knowledge. I am still learning, and still highly ignorant. Ultimately each must find and confront their own power and come to terms with it, and not all powers are good ones.

I'm not sure if I've clarified anything or just confused people, but there it is.

ETA: I almost forgot to mention one of the most enduring things: I was in a bar once when two young women starting flirting with me. I suddenly felt a powerful push within my spirit: it told me that if I didn't help one of them would be dead soon, but I couldn't tell which one. So I went ahead and made friends with them. As it turned out, one became involved with drugs and nearly lost everything precious to her. Her family and friends abandoned her and I became her only friend. She was extremely difficult to deal with and several times I told her to go and not show up at my door for at least two weeks. But throughout I advised her, sheltered her, and pulled her back from the brink. It took nearly two years. In the end, she quit the drugs, became a responsible mother and truly great friend. I'm sort of grandfather to her children now and they love me very much. She introduces me now as the man who saved her life and is her spirit guide. Such are the obligations and rewards of power.
edit on 9-12-2011 by apacheman because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:45 PM
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What is the name of that hippy song in the video! It sounds so upbeat I must know! Please respond to this and tell me.

To stay on topic, so what she is materialistic. It's not like something is wrong with that, we live in a materialistic world...

Most of these new age teachers say to follow your happiness and that is what they are doing.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:53 PM
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Many of the current Native Americans are in their bodies because of their past karma and were the very same individuals who slaughtered the original Native Americans long ago.

It is the same energy don't you see?

If you go to a group and you grow, then what is the harm? If you go and are mistreated, then you have also grown and learned from your quest.

I know of little children with more sacred and powerful abilities than most Native wise men.

Politics and power plays, control from within are the main corruption of all the Tribes today.

Go with your own intuition not what anyone tells you.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:54 PM
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reply to post by apacheman
 


it is always strange to me how things come full circle.
not too long ago the chiricahua were the most feared of all the tribes.
now people want help from you instead of wishing ill upon your tribe.
i have a chiricahua friend not to far from douglas.
last visit he took me into the chiricahua mountains to show me where his relatives used to hunt.
the first day out we crossed paths with a mexican jaguar.
i just thought it was a very cool and rare sighting, he thought it was his relatives returning to reclaim the land.
who's to say, really.
by the way, his name is jose juan __________.
one guy, two names.
last name withheld for obvious reasons.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:55 PM
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Originally posted by antar
Many of the current Native Americans are in their bodies because of their past karma and were the very same individuals who slaughtered the original Native Americans long ago.


*Cringe* Even if that is the case, thats not for anyone to claim for others. Claim it for yourself if you must.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 01:56 PM
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reply to post by Gradius Maximus
 

It is simply the truth. I am not saying it to win friends and influence members. While I am on it I will add that many of the religious zealots are also in this category of souls, same energy, different body.
edit on 9-12-2011 by antar because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 02:01 PM
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reply to post by antar
 


It is not the truth, it is just your own personal opinion / belief... and that is all that it is unless you can actually prove your claims.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 02:07 PM
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Originally posted by arpgme
reply to post by antar
 


It is not the truth, it is just your own personal opinion / belief... and that is all that it is unless you can actually prove your claims.


yes, unless he can proove reincarnation.
although there is a bit of truth in his claim.
many tribes di war with each other.
hell, the hopi and navajo still don't get along for the most part, but to exclude other influences like the spanish is
just not telling the whole truth.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 02:47 PM
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Originally posted by rubbertramp

Originally posted by sylvie

Originally posted by rubbertramp
reply to post by sylvie
 





I know exactly what you're saying, rubbertramp. BTW, I used to live in Sedona, AZ, too, for a few years, and my roommates were avid crystal diggers, mostly at Diamond Point. I probably even know you.


yup, spent lots of time around diamond point.
quartzite and tucson shows have been part of my routine for many years.

another odd one i've been familiar with for years is the 'rainbows'.
wear a scarf, talk the talk and give yourself a name like '2 feathers' does not make you spiritual or indian.
don't get me wrong, there are many good drainbows who do have a kind heart, but much of it is wanna-be
injun.



If you spent a lot of time there, you MUST know Steve and D., who used to dig there every opportunity they got.

Anyhow, yes, the "Rainbows"... mostly, as I heard, trust fund kids reliving the '60s. Although I found them quite charming, in a way; they reminded me of the European gypsies.


yea, i'm sure i know of those you mention. they are actually close friends with my buddy homer and his son danny.
concerning the rainbows, i'd even recommend going to a 'gathering' if anyone gets a chance. like everything else there is the good with the bad. r u still in az.? i'll be heading for the desert in a week of do, would be honored to buy ya' a beer or cup of coffee.
don't worry, i'm nuts but very non-violent.


Nope, sorry, I'm in New England now.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 02:52 PM
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Originally posted by The GUT
Haven't read through all the replies yet--I'm definitely gonna--but S&F for an important and well-done OP. And: Thank You! When I saw that other pro-Crowther OP yesterday it made my blood rise too.

I spent the better part of 4 years moving amongst that crowd. I wasn't there as a wide-eyed believer but I did keep an open mind. I bet I know 20 "Shaman" and 5 times that many light workers. Myriad channellers too.

The access I enjoyed included spending time with some of the best-selling authors and 'guru' types of the new age movement. I've never seen more neurotic folk in my life than those at the 'top' of this field. The Celestine Prophecy? Please believe me when I tell you folk like that have NOTHING to teach you about being a more peaceful and "connected to the Source" human-being.

Whenever I've deeply considered the philosophy of another human being, I don't just listen, but look at their life. Time & time & time again the rhetoric was lofty and beautiful but the reality of their lives--to put it simply--was not.

Don't get me wrong: I still love and occasionally see some of my friends from that group, but I'm convinced that when it comes to metaphysical philosophy, they don't have a grip on anything that's truly making a positive difference in their lives.

I've HEARD folk tell me over and over how positive their belief system has been in their life, but when the rubber meets the road I couldn't really see it.

From prosperity gurus having coniptions because their 'students' weren't paying their re$pects to them, to intentional communities preaching peace & love but falling out and arguing over the tiniest things...I never saw anything that would suggest these folk were doing anything more than grasping at the straws of a "feel-good" philosophy.

Again: Thank you, OP for bravely and responsibly sharing your experience and knowledge.


I know exactly what you mean... back in Sedona, most of the "spiritual people" I met turned out be fakes that only talked the talk but didn't walk the walk. Amazing, too, how many people with a messiah complex you'll meet -- one guy thought he was the Hopi's Great White Brother, and the last I heard of him was that he was planning to go to Hopiland and "introduce" himself. Ha-ha, wonder what kind of reception he got...



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 03:19 PM
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reply to post by apacheman
 


That was a wonderful post, apacheman. You are a true healer and teacher to those who need it. I also agree that everyone, not just Indians, has power -- most people are just too divorced from their true self, Spirit and nature to manifest those powers. Which may be good because you can do good as well as evil with them, and it takes the humility of a person who sees himself simply as a part of all that is, instead of elevating himself above others, to use it for good.

I know my personal powers and am still learning to harness them and fighting my considerable ego every day so I won't get roped into the "I'm so special" trap. It's a tough fight, but I'm hopeful that I'm winning it.



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 03:20 PM
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Originally posted by arpgme
What is the name of that hippy song in the video! It sounds so upbeat I must know! Please respond to this and tell me.

To stay on topic, so what she is materialistic. It's not like something is wrong with that, we live in a materialistic world...

Most of these new age teachers say to follow your happiness and that is what they are doing.



I have no idea, sorry...



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 03:38 PM
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She's from the Great Iwana-beindian tribe of North America. I used to be a member of that tribe, in love with the romantic idea of what once was, not the REALITY of what was (and soon will probably be again!) nor the reality of what IS. Perhaps a visit to Pine ridge or another reservation in the part far, far away from the casino will cure her. See alcoholics so bad off they drink Aqua-net and Lysol. Maybe she should just join a hippie comune instead of trying to become something she could never really be?



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 03:46 PM
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Originally posted by seabhac-rua
"There's one re-born every minute"


Actually I was surprised to read that Carlos Castaneda was considered a fraud.


I have read all of the teachings of Don Juan, as well as other teachers of the Toltec. I do not consider any of Carlos Castaneda's writings to be fraudulent. Of course, they are mystical and fantastic but that is what I would expect. I have read the website where this man goes in an extreme amount of detail to point out that Carlos Castaneda is a fraud, sexual predator, and evil being, but doesn't actually put forth any real evidence other than word-of-mouth. I think the problem a lot of people have with spiritual teachers is the fact that they make money. I hear some say "Oh, well if he was so spiritual and One with God, then he wouldn't need all that money!" As if they do not need to survive in this physical world as well? If anything, I am glad they have that money because it means that they have resources to help get their message across to more people, and more easier.

Regardless of Carlos Castaneda actually being a fraud or not, I still find his writing to be wholly insightful and I have had experiences, both in the real world and in dreaming, that have lived up to the claims he has made. In addition, it has changed my way of thinking for the better (at least, in my opinion).



posted on Dec, 9 2011 @ 04:03 PM
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You want REAL?.. THIS is REAL... Crow Clan of the Hopi.. straight from the horses mouth.. but some people.. particularly the "plastic shamans" as you call them.. don't want to hear the real TRUTH...

motherearthfathersky.org...





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