Spiritual Tourism Struggling in Sedona

Travel Blog  •  Eva Holland  •  10.22.10 | 12:39 PM ET

The New York Times’ Mark Lacey reports from Sedona—“Arizona’s New Age mecca,” as World Hum contributor Laurie Gough calls it—where visitors numbers are way down. Here’s Lacey:

Nobody is sure exactly what is keeping people away from Sedona’s four vortexes, swirling energy sources emanating from the earth, but the effects are clear: far fewer crystals are being bought, spiritual tours taken and treatments ordered, from aura cleansings to chakra balancings.

That an earthly power—the economy—is a culprit is not in doubt. But some do not discount the effects of an awful incident from a year ago that put Sedona’s New Age community in a bad light and that, to some degree, still lingers, despite efforts by metaphysical people to cast it away.

The rest of the story delves into the impact of that incident last year, when three tourists died in a sweat lodge ceremony. It’s a chilling read.