Turns out that James Arthur Ray has been operating something like a cult (more later). Only hours after conducting a self-help sweat lodge in Arizona that killed three followers and sickened over a dozen more, Ray left the scene, left the retreat, left the state and has not met with authorities.
So, on the last day of the “Spiritual Warrior” retreat (it continued–wow), he organized a conference call with the remaining attendees, the survivors. A transcript of the call was provided to Cassandra Yorgey who posted excerpts, re-printed here.
The sense I got in reading the excerpts was that he’s a wretched megalomaniac. He has absolutely no clue or care about anything going on outside of his own life. He’s just conducting yet another seminar, only by phone and out of reach of investigators. Reflexively urging his followers to continue the Ray way by staying ‘Harmonic minded’, staying with ‘what you know’, it’s almost as if he feels the homicides occurred on another planet, by another person’s hand, and that he’s actually the victim of the events. There’s no hint that he has taken or ever will take responsibility for the deaths. I also get the sense that he’s worried people might ask for their money back (about $10,000 each), so he’s actually selling them on the tragedy. Why else would you dare to call the dead ‘transitioned’? This guy belongs in jail.
“I really wanted to be with you all on the final night and my thoughts were consistently with everyone who was having challenges.”
“As restless as your mind might be, take 15 to 20 minutes to slow down and remember who you are. Next it’s important to surround yourself with healthy harmonic minded individuals who support you and love you. Hopefully you’ve connected with support, and if you haven’t please, please do because this community is coming together like never before and there is lots of support around the world. I’m sending [unclear] to all those who took ill and also those that transitioned and left this physical life, you can only give what you have and you can’t give what you’re not. Again lets all remind each other of what we know.”
“Breathe in and out. Irrelevant who is here, the unconscious mind knows and the universe knows. Now that we are connected I [unclear] to heartfelt energy [unclear] infinite [unclear] to still hospitalized. To their highest good and rapid healing at whatever level that may be. Breathe in and out through heart and all those who may still be hospitalized breathing in an out. Send out to all those how have taken ill for their rapid healing and breakthrough for new level – breathe in and out through the heart. We just feel the energy going out. Individuals who transitioned out of this physical life feel love and support of God and energy to assist them in this time of grief and challenge. Breathe in and out through the hearts of families, bathing them and supporting them in this moment. Final breath back to ourselves. Support each other, re-bond this community. In and out to the hearts of each other. Vibrating and pulsating through our bodies in this moment and we step forward acting upon this moment and the laws of the universe. So be it and it is.”
And if you think that’s bad, then I apologize for what follows. While Ray just continues on with his life and with his seminars, his top aides are left to deal with the aftermath, and they turn out to be maybe even stranger and more wretched than he is:
[Ray:] “I did an event in L.A last night, last thing I wanted to do, would rather stay home and meditate and heal but it was the right thing to do. It was a commitment and same with San Diego tonight. Many are discussing [attending] summit, and the bottom line is I made a commitment and people are flying in. There has never been a more important time to stay dialed in to thoughts of hope, thoughts of possibility and to be reminded of the things all the greatest teachers [have taught]. I know most of you are going. It will help you to be there. It will feed your soul. What we’re doing is necessary so I’m gonna be there and give it my best. Barb, will you now tell us a little about what you experienced during the closing ceremony?”
[Barb:] “…of the two that had passed and they left their bodies during the ceremony and had so much fun they chose not to come back and that was their choice that they made.”
Can we jail her too? More Barb:
“Some spoke of being next to those who were dead or sick, others of the teaching the rest of the week and [how] it was exactly what they needed to [unclear] higher evolution. Some spoke of the use of sweat lodges in the future. Everyone was quiet for a bit. Everyone spoke of embracing the light if anyone had anger or frustration [unclear] that they really need to not hold that within ourselves. I can’t remember if anyone spoke but I think if [unclear] it was expressed in themselves and not spoken words…”
Brutally selfish, mindless new age garbage. Anybody notice that people got killed here? At Ray’s retreat? In Ray’s sweat lodge? Anyone? Katie?
“For the most part it is OK to feel what you’re feeling and don’t do it alone. You guys really know how to journal, get those feeling out of you. Make sure you connect with anyone, especially Harmonic like-minded individuals. There’s a ton of people out there for you.”
“Thank you Katie”
Your pleasure. Meanwhile, the courageous Ray fights on:
“I love you guys with all my heart. I’ve thought about each and every one of you. The families. Nonstop. I would have loved to have been with you that night. Please, please let me remind you since [name redacted] said she was late, as a reminder, take care of yourself. Now more than ever stay plugged in. As hard as it was for me I told Megan and Greg it was every bit as healing to go speak to those people last night as it was for them. Stay plugged in, eat, exercise, talk to Kaite and stay connected with this community. I give you 110% of what I have. Thank you so much for who you are and what you are doing for each other and the world. Highest prayers for the families and those taken ill and a speedy recovery. Love you lots.”