I posted this in a comment over on Elaine's place, but am posting here as well, in a post since I can't get the darn comments to work.
I take issue with what Elaine says about Laurie, Meegan and Chris, and the way with which she wields shamanism and deamons as some metaphorically exciting healing dance that is by no stretch of the imagination new age.
Here's my comment:
Elaine, in this one paragraph, you make several damning assumptions. I think you'd be well advise to re-read:
"When I read what webloggers at slumberland. and notsosimple and even rageboy write about their struggles to find a way to live lives that feel satisfying and connected as well as challenging and stimulating, I want to tell them that there are other ways – ways that make the journey of self-discovery a real adventuresome and creative trip. And you don’t need drugs to do it."
You're assuming a whole hell of a lot:
1) that their lives don't feel satisfying or connected.
2) that their lives don't feel stimulating
3) that they are on some sort of magnificent journey.
4) that their particular journeys thus far are neither adventurous or creative
5) that you know what an adventurous and creative trip is
6) that they are on drugs
I think the real issues there for you have something to do with their relative youth and popularity.
In addition, in this post you imply that most new agers believe in God or some sort of spirit source, and that you're not a new ager because you don't believe in God. Those attracted to the fanatical fringes of new ageism (I would argue that most of it is fanatical) aren't there looking for God. They are there looking for them "selves" so to speak because they never developed one in the first place. Not their fault. But a magnet for the disordered.
Like I always say:
The people on meds are on them because the people who should be aren't.
AND, of course,
If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it's probably a narcissist.