New age main criticisms

2 – Spirituality & Money

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From a general perspective

Be ‘spiritual enough’ and make lots of money. The New Age movement provides all sorts of easy ‘spiritual educations’ adapting Eastern mysticism to our consumerist, materialistic  society.

As the author Morten Tolboll pointed out, “the New Age movement is characterized by its combination of Eastern philosophy with Western psychology/psychotherapy, the latest with various management theories and coaching techniques, and their built-in ‘spiritual’ educations, where, in order to sell to as many as possible, the grounding of experience is extensively neglected, consciously or unconsciously.

An example is the calling to Shaman. Traditionally the Shaman aspirant was required to be a person who went through tremendous ordeals, the so-called Initiation Crisis, or Shamanic Illness (the Shaman was a chosen human being). Still the modern Shamanism (New Age Shamanism) is a form of Shamanism, which has been accommodated for our postmodernist times (see Serge Kahlili King’s book Urban Shaman). This contemporary form is standing in overt contrast to classic Shamanism, regarding the demands to the Shaman. Everybody can, through various types of Shaman educations, learn all about this field, regardless of any experience. It is a sort of ‘user-friendly’ form of Shamanism sellable in massive quantities. One other way of creating success and wealth.

The typical scene is the white middle aged woman, who out of boredom, takes for a few weekends a course (expensive) in Shamanism, whereafter she can call herself Shaman (having a certification, which even true classical Shamans haven’t got), and earn a lot of money taking people as clients.

Today you can draw all kinds of ‘spiritual’ educations in an automat, if only you have money enough. They are typically taken in a few weekends, after which you get yourself some homemade title as therapist, shaman, healer, clairvoyant or spiritual teacher of one or the other kind. New peculiar titles are created every day. Of course such educations can not give the sufficient competence- neither spiritual or educational.”

(Sources: Morten Tolboll ‘New Age and pseudo-science’,