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The Sedona Method is a roll-your-own New Age self-administered psychotherapy, claiming to release you from emotional baggage and bring you prosperity.
It was created by a fellow called Lester Levenson after a heart attack in 1952. His doc sent him home to die around age 42. After seeing if he had the pills to end it all if he came to that, Levenson sat and thought over the philosophies and ideas he had learned in his life and concluded they weren't going to help him now. He noticed that he felt happy when recalling times in his life not so much when he Was loved, but when he was feeling loving toward others. He focussed on this and began feeling slowly better physically and emotionally. After some months he was feeling completely better and ended up inventing, in time, a system of looking at negative feelings and letting at least some of them go. Later this was called the Sedona Method. Levenson lived another forty-two years without ever seeing a doctor professionally, he told a group in 1990. He got some form of abdominal cancer and died in 1994, free of cares much of that time and allegedly free of pain during his last illness.
After he died, his "letting go of stress via releasing negative feelings" movement split into branches, with possibly the two largest or best-advertised being run by his students Larry Crane and Hale Dwoskin. Crane is a previous agent of Hollywood star Joan Collins, with a level of self-confidence approximating that of Donald Trump, the kind of salesman who could sell the Book of Mormon to Mormons. Fittingly, he set up his releasing school branch in Southern California, focussed it largely on developing prosperity consciousness, and called it "The Release Technique." Dwoskin, more the counselor or guru type who will help you experience your Inner Divinity, held down the Sedona Method "fort" in Phoenix, where Levenson had been running things with huge amounts of help from tireless devotee and teacher, Virginia Lloyd. It was Lloyd who actually developed the bulk of the teaching techniques and class outlines that became the system of teaching the Sedona Method "to the world," first in NYC, then in many cities, with the outfit landing in Phoenix in 1981.
Later Dwoskin moved his teaching operation to Sedona. It was meant to be and was very successful until, guess when, the arrival of the Great Recession. Then he scaled back. He is CEO of Sedona Training Associates. It was originally called the new-agey Freedom Now, until it was renamed with the assistance of New Age marketer Christopher John Payne.. Other branches are led by Levenson-Lloyd students Kate Freeman and Rick Solomon, who about 2015 founded the Center For Releasing, to help the world, and set up a website of that name. Possibly at least 100 other people have taught versions of the original Sedona Method course, written extensively about it based on their experience, or simply put up info on the web to be helpful: A few of these 100 or 200 names would be Annrika James, Steve Seretan, Tim McCavitt, Janet Bechtel, Annie Sobchart, Dearborn Clark, Ron Perla of Phoenix, Michael Kline of New York, Pamela Wilson of Seattle, Alan Rasmussen of Tucson, and Jeanne Fitzsimmons of Los Angeles. Some have left Sedona releasing behind; some are lightly active; some, especially Crane, are hyperactive.
It closely resembles The Secret, a comparison the releasing people are said to be not fond of. It is also a comparison a lot of them don't even know about, in spite of their raised awarenesses.
There are now at least 15 versions of the Sedona releasing techniques, and at least 15 variants of most of these. One version of the method from a best-selling book is just a few simple questions, apparently requiring $400 of CDs to fully comprehend:
Step 1: Focus on an issue you would like to feel better about.
Step 2: Ask yourself one of the following questions: Could I let this feeling go? Could I allow this feeling to be here? Could I welcome these feelings?
Step 3: Ask yourself the basic question: Would I? Am I willing to let go?
Step 4: Ask yourself this simpler question: When?
- The Sedona Method (official site)
- Lester And Me — a competing source of similar materials, disparaging the high price of Sedona
- Choose Freedom, Virginia Lloyd, Freedom Publications, Phoenix, 1984; Happiness Is Free, Hale Dwoskin, publ. about 1995, Sedona, Az.
- Hale Dwoskin. The Sedona Method. pp36-44. Sedona, AZ: Sedona Press, 2003.