Monday, July 7, 2014

The peril of the New Age Revival

Would it be an over-generalization to observe that we seem to be in the middle of a rebirth of the New Age movement?  Revivals of these sorts have roiled America ever since the Puritans first hit the beach. Suddenly, I'm discovering a new metaphysical book daily; some good, some otherwise. People are actually bothering to read this blog.  This recent wave started, I guess, with all the paranormal shows which (I hear) are on television now. But it seems to be gaining traction. A cottage industry of "mediums," seers, channels, and whatnot are springing up--even in my own neighborhood (which is quite remote).  I've debated joining one. I signed up online. The seer in question lives down the road from me. But I don't get out much anymore... And a few things about this seer threw up a flag or two. I'm sure she's legit; that's not the problem. I just have a personal ethical problem monetizing an ability that we all have.

Does it not strike you as strange that someone might want to charge you money to chat about spiritual matters, contact your spirit guide, maybe speak to a dead relative or two? It does me, but I can't put my finger on exactly why. After all, if I fix your computer, the service might be worth a buck or two. I happily pay Valvoline quite a bit of pocket change to change my oil. And, as these New Agey folks are wont to argue, they need to earn a living too. They are sacrificing their time and energy to provide a service. Isn't this worth something?

Still. Without going into a lot of detail about the person involved, there's a line that's crossed. It's one thing to charge a nominal fee for providing a valuable service by exercising a God-given gift; but, to actively market your abilities as a way of gaining lots of money, fame, and notoriety, is quite another. Maybe it's the motive that's the line. If I want to provide you with a needed service--to serve and help--receiving money for this service is not, in my opinion, unethical...  But if my motive is to make money, gain attention, credit, and inflate my ego, by using a God-given gift that isn't entirely "mine," is this somewhat morally suspect?

I'm just asking the question. My opinion is apparent, but I'm not the judge.

But--in my opinion--I just have a problem with this New Age revival in general because it strikes me as phony. It's about the money. A full three-quarters of the books that I purchase on this subject are just recycled ideas plundered from earlier books on the same topic. And the writers almost always have websites that hawk an assortment of CDs, books, and "personal readings" that charge lawyer's fees for services of dubious merit.

Look. I've been researching this field for forty years. I've learned my lessons on my own; I've gained insight through considerable personal experience, most of it unpleasant. While I won't deny consulting personal spirit guides, I won't blog about it, either. I won't pretend to tell you what my guides think people should do, for an essential reason:  We all have access to the same instruction. We are all guided and helped. We all can communicate with our deceased relatives. We all can receive warnings, insights, and advice about our paths. It is up to the individual to "find the signal," as it were... To learn to listen, and then, to learn.

The New Age revivalists seek to monetize an innate and natural spiritual ability by duping people into believing that they possess special abilities, and you don't. They're wrong. Don't believe them.  Find your own path. It's there, for everyone, free for the taking.