the culmination of Sandra Ingerman’s book was a thing of demented beauty. to recap: the premise of the book is that we have the power to heal (via vaguely shamanistic and mostly namby-pamby new age techniques) personal and environmental toxins. most of the book focuses on the personal toxin angle; the weapon of mass destruction is apparently thinking happy thoughts.
it’s in the epilogue that Ingerman waxes in her full glory to prove her thesis. she and several new age shamans decide to hold an intensive days-long ceremony to heal polluted water. (i agree with this overall goal; a very good thing to do indeed.) and, what’s more, they will scientifically test the results via a lab.
- and so … Ingerman starts by deliberately polluting the water. yes, she puts gasoline and ammonium hydroxide into potable water to prove that she and her group can transmute toxins. as always, when the thoughts whirl, i will make use of the bulleted list.
- she did what? sorry, honey, if you want to piss off the nature spirits, you’ve found an opportune way. how the hell is pouring gasoline into water a spiritual act?
- throughout the book, she discusses how you cannot do workings (she refuses to call them magick) with the ego as the driving force; the spirits will take your power if you do. but by poisoning water to prove your healing ability, aren’t you being driven by ego?
- the “scientific” method she uses is laughable, with the exception of the guy at the water testing company. kinesthesiology isn’t a scientific technique. so-called muscle testing relies on fluctuations in one of your bodies weakest joints — the shoulder — being held straight out for long periods of time. it’s no more scientific than reading the bumps on one’s head. there was also no control water, polluted or otherwise.
- the PH of the ammonium hydroxide water changes slightly after the working, but that could be a natural phenomena — something she poo-poos. she says the spirits send her a message that the PH of the gasoline water won’t change, but the water’s essence was changed anyway so as to be benign. how … convenient, those spirits.
- if it’s so benign — if the transmutation into holy water was so wildly successful as claimed, then drink it, honey. that’s right — take a gulp. wait … you won’t do that? why?
- other gems: claiming that she only works rain magick when there are cloudy skies so as to avoid the appearance of ego. no, honey, you do rain magick when there are clouds because it increases the chance of success. magick is a gentle tug, not a forcing of will; we, as small beings, cannot change the entire weather pattern of the earth. we can only nudge. refusing to admit this is, in fact, an expression of ego.
- the very final exercise of the book involves imagining someone or something you love, and then saying that you hate it so as to differentiate right from wrong. perhaps i’m wimpy, but that seems, well, violent to me. there’s enough hate in the world; isn’t that part of the premise, the personal toxins bit?
so there you have it. i’d give it negative stars in anything other than amusement value.