James Arthur Ray

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James Arthur Ray (1957–) is a convicted felon and self-help motivational guru.[note 1] In June 2011, a court found Ray guilty of negligent homicide[1] after three participants died at a "sweat lodge" ceremony he had conducted as part of a five-day large group awareness training retreat called "Spiritual Warrior" in 2009.

Native American activists consider him an asshole for not just casually appropriating chunks of their culture in this manner, but doing so with such gross negligence.


Before killing 3 people and going to prison for manslaughter, he wrote self-help books titled The Secret of Attracting the Life You Want (2008) and Create the Life You Desire and Deserve (2009). Based on his circumstances, some may actually question if his philosophy is actually helpful.[citation NOT needed] But perhaps his techniques have simply transformed improved.

Ray adheres to the law of attraction (Code of the International Industrial Union of Physicists, clause 13(c)[citation NOT needed]) and teaches that tapping into this can create "harmonic wealth" in all areas of your life. He appeared in the 2006 film The Secret, has been promoted by Oprah Winfrey (a woo-space sales-person), and has written articles published by The Huffington Post.


He went on trial in Yavapai County, Arizona. Prior to the sweat lodge, he had participants fast for three days with no food or water. He reportedly discouraged participants from leaving the "sweat lodge" even after people were unconscious or vomiting.[2]


After the deaths, he had the chutzpah to continue to advertise future retreats (rather than, say, refund the money of everyone who had paid $9000 to attend, and then throw himself into a volcano to atone for his sins get out of the self-help business forever), and to have skeptics who showed up at his seminars to ask questions about the sweat-lodge deaths escorted out.[3]

External links[edit]


  1. As in: let me help myself to your money.