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James Arthur Ray Self-help guru calls sweat lodge participants
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 16, 2009 04:27AM

"A woman identified as Barb told the callers that a channeler at the retreat last Friday said the deceased had an out-of-body experience during the sweat lodge ceremony and "were having so much fun that they chose not to come back."


Self-help guru calls sweat lodge participants

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Motivational speaker James Arthur Ray held a telephone conference call with many of the participants in a sweat lodge ceremony that left two people dead, according to people on the call who provided a transcript to The Associated Press on Thursday.

In the call Wednesday, Ray stressed the importance of eating healthy food, exercising, resting, meditation and surrounding themselves with "like-minded individuals."

"Remember all that we've learned and experienced and knowing by law of the universe that out of every apparent chaos comes a greater state of order, an order that never existed prior to the chaos," he said, after asking those on the conference call to imagine themselves standing in a prayer circle.

Ray said he used the call as a way to provide closure to those attending his five-day "Spiritual Warrior" retreat outside Sedona, according to the transcript. Ray's spokesman, Howard Bragman, confirmed the telephone conference was held.

Two people died and 19 others were injured after being overcome in the Oct. 8 sweat lodge ceremony led by Ray. One person remains hospitalized in critical condition.

Ray stopped short of apologizing to participants for not being at the Angel Valley Retreat Center the morning after the deaths, saying "I hope you understand it certainly wasn't my wish not to be with you and bring you some kind of closure."

Ray declined to be interviewed by the sheriff's office on the night of the incident and returned to California.

A woman identified as Barb told the callers that a channeler at the retreat last Friday said the deceased had an out-of-body experience during the sweat lodge ceremony and "were having so much fun that they chose not to come back."

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Re: James Arthur Ray Self-help guru calls sweat lodge participants
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 16, 2009 05:55AM

This is where these sects get lethal, when they try to reframe the death of followers at a seminar as a "choice".
Sound familiar? Its the same thing as when they say..."its all Voluntary" in their disclaimers and waivers.

Its no accident that James Ray got one of his people to say their deaths was a "choice". That is a persuasion tactic to use on his own people, to reinforce that suggestion in their minds.
The really scary thing, is that Jim Jones used almost the identical language patterns.

Dangerous narcissist psychopaths are not some crazy criminals in a jail somewhere, they are very often wearing $1,000 suits, living in mansions, can cry crocodile tears on cue, and have wide smiles with perfectly white-capped teeth.
The real narcissist psychopaths can make you feel they LOVE you, with their strategic Love-Bombing. They are the master manipulators.

James Ray is literally doing every advanced persuasion technique that exists, and he's not going to stop "voluntarily".
Is he going to get away with it?


A woman identified as Barb told the callers that a channeler at the retreat last Friday said the deceased had an out-of-body experience during the sweat lodge ceremony and "were having so much fun that they chose not to come back."
The recording of the conference call was made and transcribed by one of the listeners, said Tom McFeeley, who also listened to the call and provided the transcript to the AP. McFeeley is Brown's cousin and has been acting as the Brown family spokesman.

"We find it offensive that anyone would classify their death as a choice," McFeeley said. "We don't believe she chose to suffocate in a sweat lodge. We don't think she chose to fast for 36 hours without food or water and then have improper nutritional care. She did not choose to have improper medical care on site."

Fewer than a dozen callers were identified in the transcript, all of whom praised Ray and described his intentions as "pure" and their experiences as "profound." They also expressed sympathy for the families of the victims but suggested that the deaths of Brown and Shore were by choice.

"It breaks my heart to know that the families are suffering," said one caller identified as Brent. "I think that the people that left, I do believe they made their own choices, whether on this level or the next, but I do feel really for the families."

McFeeley said the comments on the call solidify his belief that Ray is controlling the people involved in his self-help program.

"There were reasonable people at this event, and it shows the power one man can have when you combine physical and mental mistreatment," McFeeley said. "Everything in this retreat seems to have been taken too far, and those statements were hurtful to hear and probably more hurtful to communicate them to the family last night."

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/16/2009 06:01AM by The Anticult.

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James Arthur Ray Sweat lodge deaths investigated as homicides
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 16, 2009 06:14AM

Sweat lodge deaths investigated as homicides
(CNN) -- An investigation into the deaths of two people who spent up to two hours inside a "sweat lodge" at an Arizona retreat last week has been elevated from an accidental death investigation to a homicide inquiry, Yavapai County Sheriff Steve Waugh told reporters Thursday.

Authorities said James Shore of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and Kirby Brown of Westtown, New York, died Friday at the Angel Valley Resort after spending up to two hours in the sauna-like sweat lodge. Nineteen others were treated for injuries.

The dead and injured were attending a program by self-help author James Arthur Ray, authorities said.

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Re: James Arthur Ray Sweat lodge deaths investigated as homicides
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 16, 2009 06:46AM

Like the Sheriff says, it was no "accident".

This is why the clever guru/psychopath knows one should never talk to the police on the scene.
Were the only witnesses James Ray's own followers? No wonder he got them on that telephone conference call.
That conference call seems to say that James Ray wanted to get the sweat lodge survivors to fly into his seminar tonight?

James Ray is a a world class expert in countless techniques of group persuasion.
So James Ray, who is the "primary focus of the investigation" is going to have another seminar with most or all of the witnesses?

Sheriff says sweat lodge deaths "not accidental"

PRESCOTT, Ariz. — An Arizona sheriff investigating the deaths of two people during a sweat lodge ceremony led by self-help expert James Arthur Ray says the fatalities are now being investigated as homicides.

Yavapai (ya-VUH'-pye) County Sheriff Steve Waugh said Thursday that the deaths of 38-year-old Kirby Brown of Westtown N.Y. and 40-year-old James Shore of Milwaukee were not accidental.

Ray led more than 50 people into a makeshift sweat lodge at a retreat outside Sedona, Ariz. on Oct. 8. After about two hours, Brown and Shore were pulled out of the sweat lodge. Nineteen other people were taken to hospitals and one remains in critical condition.

Waugh said Ray is the primary focus of the investigation and others also are being investigated.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/16/2009 06:51AM by The Anticult.

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Re: James Arthur Ray Sweat lodge deaths now a homicide case
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 16, 2009 07:08AM

BREAKING NEWS: Sweat lodge deaths now a homicide case
By Lisa Irish, The Daily Courier
Thursday, October 15, 2009

Deputies search Ray's California headquarters

The investigation into the two deaths and numerous injuries that occurred during a James Arthur Ray "Spiritual Warrior" seminar at the Angel Valley Retreat near Sedona has turned from a death investigation into a homicide investigation, said Yavapai County Sheriff Steve Waugh said.

"Because of information that we have obtained from interviews from participants in this most recent "Spiritual Warrior" seminar and from other past participants in them, we have elevated the investigation from an accidental death investigation to a homicide investigation," Waugh said.

Sheriff's detectives executed search warrants earlier this week at James Ray International's offices in Carlsbad, Calif., with help from Carlsbad Police Department officers, Waugh said.

"Detectives when they exercised that search warrant were looking for medical information on participants of the current Spiritual Warrior event and also other previous events," Waugh said. "We're also trying to determine if documentation exists on how to construct sweat lodges and the proper use of those lodges. Additionally, documentation on whether participants were advised of the risks before or during the Spiritual Warrior program," Waugh said.

Waugh said investigators will focus on Ray and any other person who may have played a role in the deaths of James Shore, 40, of Milwaukee, Wis., and Kirby Brown, 38, of Westtown, New York.

Waugh said his office would like all participants who have knowledge of the Spiritual Warrior seminar at Angel Valley Retreat, or who have experienced something similar, to contact the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office by e-mail at or Yavapai Silent Witness 1-800-939-3232.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - 2 die at Arizona retreat's sweat lodge
Posted by: shimon ()
Date: October 16, 2009 09:29AM

Dear Anticult,

Thank you very much for all of your posting and work on this james arthur ray sweat lodge sedona incident. it is very much appreciated and is helpful.

I could have seen ray at a free event in my local city a little while back but decided not to go. I am glad i did not go now. Not that i would have signed up for any of his paying programs, but why even be in this guys presence.

I am shocked and appalled by this whole thing. Anybody with any common sense and clear reasoning can see what you are so patiently pointing out. To me it is rather insane that anybody still is interested in him or any of his programs or wants to follow him.

I cannot condemn or judge him, but it sure seems like he is not walking his talk and he seems like a greedy person only interested in himself and not the welfare of others. You made a great point and it is very clear that if he truly cared about the people this wouldnt have happened, for it has happened before.

I wonder if oprah, ellen,larry king, etc all those who endorsed this guy before and had him on will be smart enough to distance themselves from him or if they are still going to fall for his words, new age words.

I am so pleased to see the native american community so upset over this incident as they should be. new age people still probably like ray, but native americans see into him and his greedy ways and lack of respect for sacred ceremonies that shouldnt be imitated by those who dont know what they are doing or trained in the traditional ways as he obviously isnt.

but there are still so many new ageers and self improvement people who still are siding with ray, even after all of this. I hope they read your posts on here and become more openminded. or else they might be the next victims of this guy or a similar guy.

i cant believe if he gets away with this. He should be brought to justice, at least be tried in a court of law for murder or criminal negligence. I am not saying he is guilty or should be put in jail, but at least tried in a court of law and see if he really is innocent. for gods sake, two people lost their lives because of him and several others were seriously injured and all the trauma, etc. he definitely created some very, very negative karma from this even if he gets away with it, and i would not want to be him or have to leave with all that guilt in his 4 million dollar home.

I will continue to read your posts and learn as much as i can. THank you for all of your contributions. Shimon

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Re: James Arthur Ray - Colleen Marian Conaway
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 17, 2009 01:23AM

What happened concerning the death of Colleen Marian Conaway?

In the comments section of the article below, going back into July and August 2009, before the current tragedy, there are numerous comments where people who were close to Colleen are stating her death was not a "suicide" and saying it had something to do with the James Ray seminar.

Those comments were posted months before the current tragedy.
There are family members saying something was going on with the James Ray Seminars, both personally and financially.


shocked says:
I think the group lead by James Arthur Ray has something to do with Colleen's death. She was there attending a seminar. They use a tactic called Large Group Awareness Training to brainwash participants. Please do further investigation into this.
August 14, 8:48 PM

Bridget Smith says:
I have been working with Colleen for years now and I agree that this doesnt make any sense as a suicide. Further investigation is needed. This isnt fair to anyone who had the opportunity to be involved in this wonderful womans life.
July 28, 4:43 PM

Jamie says:
On behalf of my family, I want to thank everyone for their kind words and prayers. This tragedy has taken all of us by complete surprise. My aunt was someone completely against suicide and her life was all about being positive.

The only thing different and wrong in her life now was her envolvement with the James Arther Ray seminars. We are investigating this and I urge anyone with a family member involved with this guy to strongly question them about the goings on of this organization. Both on a personal and a financial level.

Again, thank you to everyone for thier kind words and prayers; they mean a LOT to us in our time of grief
July 28, 7:50 AM

anonymous says:
she almost landed on top of me when she fell... i can not get the image and the sound of her fall out of my mind. my heart aches for her and those she left behind. i have not been the same since saturday. i have some closure now that i know her name. colleen - i can now pray for you and use your name. may you rest in peace.
July 27, 9:24 PM

Denise Sharp says:
I knew Colleen and there is no way that was a suicide. I hope they investigate further.
July 27, 4:47 PM

UPDATE: Possible suicide victim identified

July 27, 12:46 PM S an Diego News Examiner
Dave Thomas

Authorities have released the name of a woman who fell to her death Saturday afternoon at Horton Plaza.

In an earlier story - [] it was reported that the death was being investigated as a possible suicide.

Authorities have identified the victim as Colleen Marian Conaway, 46, of Park Rapids, Minn.

Witnesses informed authorities they watched Conaway jump from the third-floor balcony at 1:40 p.m. Saturday.

Conaway reportedly fell to the sidewalk near the movie theaters in the downtown mall. She was taken to UCSD Medical Center, where her death was pronounced shortly upon arrival.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - Colleen Marian Conaway
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 17, 2009 01:38AM

What happens with these extreme LGAT seminars, is that people don't just take one single seminar. They hook them in, and reel them in, and they take seminar after seminar, going deeper into the rabbit hole.

The seminar leaders use dozens and literally HUNDREDS of the most powerful influence and mind-crushing techniques on people, including extreme sleep deprivation, food and water deprivation, and endless techniques to triggers various traumas people might have in their psyches.
They bombard them from early in the morning until well after midnight, more than 16 hrs a day. That is a deliberate technique to break people down to make them more suggestible, and then the upsell them to the next seminar, and the vicious cycle continues.

It has been PROVEN that extreme STRESS can precipitate extreme psychiatric episodes in people with no history.
The extreme stress of these LGAT seminars does the same.

But even worse, they use all sorts of powerful techniques to try and crack open people's traumas from the past. So a person who has experienced a severe trauma many years ago, can have it Triggered by the seminar leader with their "exercises".
That can then trigger a full-blown PTSD espisode, and PTSD mishandled can be lethal.
Terrible things can happen very quickly.

On top of that, there are many reports of people literally have a "psychotic break" while going to these extreme seminars.
Read the disclaimers of the seminars, and they describe what can happen to people, including death.
Death Waiver []

Unfortunately the public has no idea of what is going on at these seminars.
You could take an expert with 20 years experience in this field, and even they are at risk at one of these seminars.
But the people who really get hurt are the "soccer moms" from middle America, people who have no idea of what is happening to them. They have no training in these extreme techniques, which could be used on professionals.

People are getting hurt, people are being bilked of every penny they have in the world, and are persuaded to borrow every dollar they can and sign it over right in the seminar while under undue influence, using tricky contracts. They lose everything.

People are ending up in emergency wards right from the seminar, and people are dying in the aftermath of psychological decompensation from the extreme stress.

Many LGAT's watch for people who are going over the edge, and they kick them out of the seminar as its happening TO AVOID BEING HELD RESPONSIBLE. That is a proven fact, it happens all the time.

How much longer are they going to continue to get away with it?

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/17/2009 01:48AM by The Anticult.

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James Arthur Ray - Colleen Marian Conaway, The World of AF Grant
Posted by: The Anticult ()
Date: October 17, 2009 03:09AM

Below is a quote from someone with a blog called "The World of AF Grant" [] who took the Creating Absolute Wealth with James Ray seminar In San Diego in July 2009. He is promoting the seminar.

He goes onto describe a "suicide" he saw at a mall, without naming the mall.
Did he not realize at any point, that was Colleen Conaway, a fellow participant at the James Ray CAW seminar?
It also seems odd how he says,

"I was the only witness who had the vantage point to know it was intentional".

So he was physically very close to her, but did not recognize her from the seminar?

That blog entry was written over a week after the seminar.
Didn't anyone tell him that one of the seminar attendees died, and it was Colleen Conaway, a fellow seminar attendee, the same death he witnessed?

And since the blog was posted, has anyone asked him if he knew it was a fellow seminar attendee? Are there any comments about Colleen Conaway on the blog?

Another strange coincidence mentioned, is how just after the death, he ran into another fellow James Ray CAW seminar attendee named "Lori" in the same mall?

Was going to the Horton Mall part of a group event field trip outing of the James Ray Creating Absolute Wealth seminar?

Tuesday, August 04, 2009
Creating Absolute Wealth with James Ray

"One detail I can share is something I witnessed which certainly proved to be the lowlight/highlight. I was wandering around San Diego alone, wondering what I was going get from the weekend; what did I need to learn most? I spotted a woman standing outside the railing of a balcony on the third level at a mall. I thought it was some sort of stunt because ComicCon was going on. She jumped. It wasn't a stunt. I was the only witness who had the vantage point to know it was intentional.

I gave statements to the police and mall security. If you know anything about me, you know suicide is about the biggest button I have to push. Later, I found myself standing where she jumped from, it had only been about a half-hour but the blood stained concrete was cleaned up and the t-shirt kiosk the woman landed on was once again selling "I Love San Diego" shirts to tourists. It was so surreal to see how quickly life moves on.
I couldn't understand why she would do it. Why anyone would do. And I cried. Tears of joy - joy for being alive. That was HUGE for me. And while standing there, I noticed Lori walk into the scene below - first time I've seen her all day...."

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 10/17/2009 03:19AM by The Anticult.

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Re: James Arthur Ray - 2 die at Arizona retreat's sweat lodge
Posted by: Sol Ivictus ()
Date: October 17, 2009 03:46AM

I hadn't heard they upgrade this to homicide. It's getting surprisingly little airplay but a story like this could make many people aware of the danger of LGAT and gurus in general.

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