Spiritual Bullsh*t & New Age Nonsense: Don’t Relinquish Your Power.

Via Ben Ralston
on Apr 20, 2012
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Personal development: in this area people all too often hand over their power to others.

Any time you ask someone else to predict your future, or tell you your past, any time you believe another person has something you do not, whenever you hope that the cause of or solution to your problems lies outside yourself, you are handing over your power. You are relinquishing your responsibility and stepping off the path.


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Editor: Kate Bartolotta


About Ben Ralston

Ben Ralston has been practising personal development—necessity being the Mother of invention—since he was about six years old. He’s been teaching and sharing what he’s learnt along the way for a couple of decades. His main thing is Heart of Tribe retreats—whose very purpose is to help you fall back in love with life, no less. Leading these retreats alongside his woman Kara-Leah Grant—also an elephant journal writer (that’s how they met!)—they combine a deep well of lineage-based yoga teaching experience, with expertise in healing trauma and various other methods of personal development. Ben also works with clients one-on-one via Skype, writes, makes videos from time to time, and is passionate about parenting. He lives in an intentional, tribal community in the hills of Croatia, where you might find him gardening barefoot and talking to the rocks. Connect with Ben on Facebook or YouTube or check out his website for more info.


33 Responses to “Spiritual Bullsh*t & New Age Nonsense: Don’t Relinquish Your Power.”

  1. MamasteNJ says:

    Wow, I could listen to Ben's voice for hours…..an added bonus, he speaks the truth. Never give up your power. xoxo Ben., Lovely. ~Mamaste

  2. Ben_Ralston says:

    Thanks Mamaste.

  3. ingrdo says:

    Right on, dude. Right ON! You are speaking my language! I've not been working w/ folks so connected to the 'end-times' shit but w/ those who desperately (not *quite* the right word but pretty close) reliant on cards, angels, teachings/teachers, dice, psychics, past life regression, future and in-between life crap, ad nauseum and etc, to try to *understaaaaaaand* or make a move. and/or have others to do the work for them. Thanks so much for putting this out there. I started writing a blog post about it yesterday while in the the train. With your permission, I'd like to add this to it! Ingrid

  4. Ben_Ralston says:

    Thanks Ingrid, and yes, you can certainly share this however you want.
    With love

  5. marcy says:

    thank you, i was looking for the right words for a friend that is terrified because of a health issue, and listening to everyone and everyone's uncle on what treatment to take, not to mention some very expensive quacks that use the conspiracy theory as to why their treatment isn't mainstream…. so even though she and I are very mad at "god" right now, she does not need to hand her power over to anyone else.

  6. Lori Bell says:

    Hi, Ben. The personal responsibility you are talking about I have come to refer to as "'Home' Work"; i.e. The work you have to do with the "home" of your own soul, you as you are, and it is work that no one else can do for you. Furthermore, if you don't do your "'home' work", if you don't learn the particular lessons that YOU are here to learn from whatever Your Particular "assignments" happen to be, then you don't get the "Gold Stars", you don't get the joy you spoke of, and, as best I can tell, you don't get to "Graduate" either, instead you may very well have to keep "repeating the course" until you do finally learn what it is You are supposed to learn through the experience of human incarnation.

    What I have also come to appreciate most recently is that if and as you DO do your own "'home' work", That Effort strengthens your character, strengthens your will, strengthens your muscles for bigger and better things, even potentially world changing things, which will require all that new found strength from you.

    But if you Do Not Do Your "'Home' Work", then nothing changes, and you will miss out on all the other Rewards that a truly, healthy and functional, human has to offer.

  7. Samira says:

    I'll only say trust your self and enjoy the journey.
    Thanks Ben

  8. Diane says:

    Excellent message yet again. And you already know how I feel about the videos…

  9. Denis says:

    Thanks for sharing man!

    I absolutely agree that there is a lot of bull out there, and there are still people who are buying it.

    Which is fine, because that's the lesson they need to take, could be a hard one, but it leads towards deeper understanding – towards growth. If take up gurus for instance, I have heard this saying than I really like: " Fake people will attract fake gurus"

    And I think it doesn't matter how much you warn them, they simply have to go through it to sharpen their common sense.

    Keep your good work up Ben.


  10. cathywaveyoga says:

    I am trying to listen to this but hi swalking and the headphones make me feel he is nto centered. Interesting to read his background and potential as well as current following.

  11. ValCarruthers says:

    Oh I love you, my straight-shooting friend! All I can say is, Amen.

    Just posted to "Featured Today" on the Elephant Spirituality Homepage.

    Valerie Carruthers
    Please go and "Like" Elephant Spirituality on Facebook

  12. Ben_Ralston says:

    Yes. The key word, for me, is work.
    I think that it's in the Bhagavad Gita that it's written:
    "Your right is only to work".

  13. Ben_Ralston says:

    Thank you Denis

  14. Ben_Ralston says:

    Thank you, and Amen.

  15. Ben_Ralston says:

    Please tell your friend not to be terrified. What will be will be. And she should focus on making the most out of what is. Fear will only slow her down.
    With love

  16. Jennifer says:

    Om shanti

  17. Todd Medina says:

    The One God, Creator, Creation…By Design, in the Perfect Order of the Universe, has Given to Us, the Creators, the Ability to Experience and To Be….Creation….to Follow and Refine Existing Paths and to Create New Paths in Pursuit and in the Realization of Higher Levels of Elevation….But for this, the Way Can only be from Our Own Essence, (Soul). It Starts Within…No One Can Bring Us Home…But Ourselves….To Give that Chosen Responsibility to Another, is to Impede Our Spiritual Growth and to Ground Ourselves, albeit, Momentarily, in that which We Seek to Rise from…Soulogy. https://www.facebook.com/groups/108535615943942/ Picking up the Elephant Feed, Namaste.

  18. jamesvincentknowles says:


  19. Ben_Ralston says:

    Om namah Sivaya

  20. Ben_Ralston says:

    Thanks Todd.

  21. mary says:


  22. ValCarruthers says:

    Just posted to "Popular Lately" on the Elephant Spirituality Homepage.

    Valerie Carruthers
    Please go and "Like" Elephant Spirituality on Facebook

  23. Jonathan says:

    My first exposure to New Age bullsh*t came in the form of a 52 year red-haired woman who lives in Concord, CA. Self-mutilates, fears sexual contact, uses Werner Erhardt's EST training tapes to ruin every relationship as she consults them on what to do. She believes she's going to die in her 68th year because some "guru" said so. She is walking around with an untreated borderline personality disorder.

  24. Jonathan says:

    This New Age nutcase is frequently duped, has no common sense, has an extremely poor memory, can't feel love or give love, hates herself, is the poorest verbal communicator I've ever encountered, is ignorant of current events, and an utter airhead. Her brother is in on it too because he using "channeling" to tell her what to do in her life. She uses numerology and astrology to guide all that she does. What a fool at 52.

  25. madgrooves says:

    It has taken me a long time to see how often I've given over my power to people, thoughts, things. I've found myself saying for a while, "Life doesn't let me get away with sh*t. She makes me be honest with myself, the bloody b*tch." I wouldn't have it any other way, though I've certainly tried a time or three! But now whenever I'm with someone, or choosing thoughts or behaviors that are not in the flow with divinity, i feel it deep within my bones and it refuses to leave me alone until I face it. Because sometimes, the options before our eyes look heavenly in their disguise….until we cannot ignore their deeper lies.

  26. Irene says:

    thanks for sharing. beautifully said. thank you.

  27. […] all of this “New Age” stuff, the world has become a bit obsessed with positive thinking, reframing, and […]

  28. marksmerk says:

    Common sense approach. YOU need to live your life. Ups, downs, in betweens. You need to figure your way. And enjoy the ride!

  29. […] Don’t give me this watered down version of new-age spirituality. […]

  30. Red says:

    This is certainly a nice approach to sexual abuse, child abuse, genocide, etc. "Hell, those people shouldn't have given away their power. Oh, you have PTSD? Suck it up, buttercup, and get over it." Very cruel and unrealistic advice