|Sedona Arizona (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Companions Circle is open to any who study and live shamanic ways, but has long recommended "being your own shaman" and living as a "shamanic shift center" (each your own ways) where and when you happen to be and live amid the situations and events that arise day by day and call out for new shamanzing as healing or helping. Our contemporary, emerging, widespread yet small-scale church-without-walls, recommends studying many religious traditions (as well as science, technology, philosophy, art and more) and adapting or innovating teachings -- without copying, imitating, co-opting, appropriating, claiming, or stealing -- then testing and changing practices (as safely as possible, given life's weirdness) through ongoing experience.
As a matter of course, I and several others keep spiritual leaders (by any term or title), especially the self-proclaimed multi-million-dollar-making sorts, at a safe (faraway) distance.
Recently when CNN reported the freeing of this "New Age guru" who facilitated three ardently enthused followers' deaths in Sedona, Arizona in October 2009, I noticed a link to the new non-profit organization Seek Safely and their Promise not to mislead while practicing and teaching complementary and alternative self-help methods. This short yet comprehensive document was sent to 150 famous self-help and motivational teachers, authors, and speakers (who have reaped significant profits from the industry) with an invitation to sign and participate in memory of Kirby Brown and two others who died during James Arthur Ray's dangerous "Spiritual Warrior" workshop-ordeal.
Though Companions Circle-Shamanic Shift Center is too small-scale and unknown to have received a special invitation from Seek Safely, I noticed the PDF download-link on their website and quickly, happily signed on with this worthy cause because the words, meaning and mission behind The Promise resonate harmoniously. I opine this heartfelt, grief-transforming effort could help prevent some painful harm and sudden deaths from abuse (careless or intentional) of spiritual power.