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New Age is a broad term used to cover a wide variety of alternative spiritual beliefs and practices, ranging from aromatherapy and the use of crystals, to astral projection, channeling, and elements drawn from the occult, and various Eastern traditions, often built onto a framework of Christianity.

There is no one way to practice New Age spirituality, but common practices among New Agers include various types of meditation, trance channeling, the consultation of spirit guides and angels, and psychic readings.

Most New Agers practice faith healing and other forms of alternative medicine, generally with the idea that the natural state for a human being is one of health, and that illness represents a disruption of this balance. Subsequently, New Age therapies are physical, mental, and spiritual.

Closely related is the holistic health movement, which began in the 1970s. With the goal of seeking health and happiness by integrating with the universe, holistic methods include acupuncture, aromatherapy, breathing exercises, chiropractic care, reiki, yoga, and the use of herbal medicine and healing crystals, chromotherapy, hypnosis, and psychic healing. Although aspects of the holistic health have become mainstream, its development was closely associated with the New Age movement.

New Agers are apt to adopt various Eastern forms of divination, such as astrology, cartomancy, the I Ching, numerology, tarot, crystal balls, or other objects used for divination.

Shamanism or neo-shamanism are common among New Agers, based on shamanism from Eastern traditions or that of North American indigenous people.

Some New Agers believe in mental projection and levitation.

Chakra balancing, another New Age practice, is derived from a mixture of Buddhist and Hindu traditions. It is a yoga-type of position with a goal of balancing and opening specific energy fields along the spinal column.

New Agers often give blessings and perform ceremonies to the full moon, borrowing from ancient fertility rites, or from tribal shamans.

Smudging, as practiced by New Agers, is borrowed from Native American traditions, and is used in purification or cleansing prayers or healing rituals. Special herbs are commonly used.

Like the ancient Egyptians, Chinese, Greeks, and other societies, New Agers make use of incense in various rituals or ceremonies.

Most New Age rites and ceremonies are intended to bring about individual development and improvement, whether through the discovery of new truths, healing techniques, or the mastery of subtle energies. As there is no formal clergy and few churches that are specifically identified as New Age, New Agers tend to practice their religion alone, and in their own way, so it is difficult to make a distinction between rituals and everyday practices. While there are identified shamans or healers within the New Age movement, practitioners are likely to incorporate shamanism into their daily religious devotions and to practice self-therapy as to seek out a shaman or healer.

Many New Age rituals focus on healing the mind, body, spirit, or earth. Reiki and Rolfing techniques are used to heal specific problems, sometimes employing trained healers. New Agers believe that Reiki healers are able to access invisible energy fields and to manipulate them in order to heal certain illnesses or to bring spiritual awareness to their patients. Often, there is a blending of several medical and spiritual genres.

In addition to Reiki, New Agers may use several rituals to engage and manipulate what they believe to be subtle bodily energies. This might involve meditation, special ceremonies, or other rituals.

Less common are ritual sexual practices, although New Agers have borrowed from Buddhist and Hindu Tantric traditions as well as neo-paganism.

Whatever they may be, New Age practices are the focus of topics in this category. Of course, those focusing on both beliefs and practices should be submitted to the parent category, and those whose topic is on New Age religion, in general, can be submitted to its parent, the New Age category.





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