No New Age
Dingo, too, is a genuine shaman - the wild dog inhabiting Australia and southern Asia. You, too, can become a Dingo - of course, not by going to a shamanic course but to the woods and without paying for it.
Unfortunately, there are many people among us who show their appetite to control and manipulate others. I believe that most people involved with New Age are liars. Albeit some of us perceive the word "esotericism" negatively, anything can be abused - meditation, too, if taken from its place and put where it does not belong.
True esotericism starts with a belief that colors may affect you and ends with an idea that when you sit in the woods and hear gurgling runnels, it helps. A discussion about a bamboo tree in the world where you befriend yourself with Dingos appears more logical than boasting about career achievements. Mother Earth would surely agree with me.
Do you know that fortunetellers or magicians deceive you? Before you let them take you into their New Age train, ask them: "Can you really predict the future? Then you must already know the numbers of this weekend's lottery! Had you been able to win it, you would then not have asked anything for your service."
Some of the New Age people are so crazy that they expect seeing UFO's flying over cities and say they have a contact with extraterrestrials. But when you tell them, "Send them to me, I'd like to speak with them," they will soon lose their firm ground.
My point is not to say that "shamanism" is bad. I only want to expose the other side of the coin. One "shaman" in Africa wanted to cure a boy by pouring battery acid on him. I heard, too, about "shamans" singing in the woods, but when a fire broke out, they showed no fellow feeling to the people who had to run away from their homes in the woods.
The best way to test fortunetellers is to start with your past. If they have real qualities, then they must tell you how many children you have, how many times you got married, etc. If someone predicts the future, he or she violates the rules of God, as this life is a test (exam) you must get through alone and knowing your future in advance is against the rules of this test similarly like going to a school exam with someone else's answers (expected to be answered by you).
Going to fortunetellers with a false date of your birthday will convince you - they will all believe you were born on that date.
What Is New Age?
New Age is hidden under the veil of beautiful words such as "Meditation", "Reiki", "tantra", etc., but it extends far beyond the central pillars of the above traditional techniques. Adherents of New Age are "spiritual grave thieves", as they make great profits from spiritual treasures of aboriginal cultures and only seldom pay them back. If you look, for example, at many "meditation" pages in Google, you will find out that promoters of New Age ideas, often "therapists", mix up everything into one soup - Tantra, meditation, UFO, Reiki, amazing health, success, etc.
New Age abuses religiousness of the humankind. Look into history and study a bit the reasons why meditation or Tantra is here - Tantra is secret, so the point One is that it cannot go public; the point Two is that meditation, yoga or Tantra were not originally a tool for profits; the point Three is that these old techniques served as the door to spiritual knowledge without even thinking of conditions like "amazing health", or "electrifying sexual experience". And the quality spiritual knowledge ultimately includes a service for humanity - helping the poor, doing charity, etc., which is the core of all religions.
The greatest criticism of New Age comes from the indigenous Indians. Lakota people have "Declaration of War Against Exploiters of Lakota Spirituality". Among the critics of barbaric "witchdoctors" are Leslie Marmon Silko (the Laguna Indian tribe) and Wendy Rose (from the Hopi tribe), but many others, too.
The declaration mentioned above contains, for example,
the following statements:
WHEREAS pseudo-religious corporations have been formed to charge people money for admission into phony "sweatlodges" and "vision quest" programs; and
WHEREAS sacrilegious "sundances" for non-Indians are being conducted by charlatans and cult leaders who promote abominable and obscene imitations of our sacred Lakota sundance rites; and
WHEREAS academic disciplines have sprung up at colleges and universities institutionalizing the sacrilegious imitation of our spiritual practices by students and instructors under the guise of educational programs in "shamanism;" and...
René Guénon, the famous French mystic, says that our universe is not a product of random or evolutionary manifestation. Traditional concepts of the world are not products of "clairvoyants", New Age, or random myths. They are based upon the cosmological context which Hindus call the Mahayuga (a complete cycle of four Yugas). Guénon thinks that the Hindu cycle is the most complex one.
Either you are a real truth-seeker - looking for quality (in traditional roots like Hinduism, Christianity...) - or you landed on a plane of nothingness. If you still keep flying without knowing where to land, distinguish the following two things: 1) religious metaphysics and esotericism, and 2) magic and New Age occultism.
Search Google for the following keywords: "Gallery of Esoteric Channelers, Liars and Self Deluded". Every coin has two faces. Every tree has its root and its crown. But the root is not the crown, although New Age says it is. True forms of God grow from One Source only (fertile land) and always give fruits like a tree.