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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 19, 1989 | JOHN DART, TIMES RELIGION WRITER
Is Disneyland simply a fun place to take the kids or out-of-town visitors? Or, in the words of two Boston researchers, is it "a modern pilgrimage site," a sanctuary from the world that evokes a sense of paradise and purity? Never mind that most people believe they go to Disneyland just to speed down the Matterhorn or splash down a mountain.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 23, 2014 | By a Times staff writer
A San Clemente man who poured ammonia and rubbed raw eggs on women as part of a “spiritual cleansing” ritual has been convicted of rape and other sexual assault charges and could be sentenced to up to 75 years in prison. Alberto Flores Ramirez, 36, was accused of luring two women to a Santa Ana motel where he performed a “spiritual cleansing” ritual that he said would rid them of their negative energy and improve their loves lives. One of the women sought his help in getting her children safely to California from Mexico, the Orange County district attorney's office said.
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NEWS
August 16, 1989 | LYNN SMITH, Times Staff Writer
To a secluded beach in Kauai, Swiss Yoga teacher Kutira Decosterd leads the faithful as if to Mecca. They bring their "oceanic Tantra" rituals, their drums, their Australian aborigine dolphin-calling sticks. Off the Orange County coast, Bob Dennis, a former director of fantasy cruises, uses a conch shell, a guitar and "cross-cultural shamanistic techniques" to lead his group into "dolphin dream time." From Pittsboro, N.C.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 5, 2014 | By Hillel Italie
Peter Matthiessen, a rich man's son who rejected a life of ease in favor of physical and spiritual challenges and produced such acclaimed works as "The Snow Leopard" and "At Play in the Fields of the Lord," died Saturday. He was 86. His publisher Geoff Kloske of Riverhead Books said Matthiessen, who had been diagnosed with leukemia, was ill "for some months. " He died at a hospital near his home on Long Island in New York. Matthiessen helped found the Paris Review, one of the most influential literary magazines, and won National Book Awards for "The Snow Leopard," his spiritual account of the Himalayas, and for "Shadow Country.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 12, 1995
"How then do I seek Thee, O Lord? For when I seek Thee, I seek a happy life. I will seek Thee that my soul may live. For my body liveth by my soul, and my soul by Thee." St. Augustine (350-430), Confessions. * The urge to go on a spiritual retreat--which may coincide with the dawn of a new year--is usually accompanied by the idea to seek a site far from city life.
NEWS
April 13, 1992 | ELIZABETH MEHREN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Except for the "recovery group disorder" he thinks it espouses, the "individual powerlessness" he insists it encourages and the "higher power" he believes it "stuffs down people's throats," Jack Trimpey thinks there's not a whole lot wrong with Alcoholics Anonymous. Oh, yes. There's also the "victim mentality," the "ritual affection" and the "forceful indoctrination" that Trimpey contends come along with the AA turf.
NEWS
May 26, 1997 | MARY ROURKE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
At the Franciscan monastery of Siroki Brijeg, in the barren countryside of Bosnia-Herzegovina, a ghostly pale woman on a pilgrimage from Boston told her story. Her name is Fran Russell and she first came here last year, when her doctors said her back condition was worse and she would soon be confined to bed. In what she expected to be her last act of mobility, the 44-year-old health care worker traveled to the village of Medjugorje, a pilgrim site near the monastery.
NEWS
February 11, 1993 | BETH KNOBEL, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Irina Matushenko braved a dirty overnight train to travel here from her Belarussian town more than 500 miles away. And she came not to shop for sausage or potatoes, but to search for spiritual enlightenment. Like thousands of people from all over the now-fragmented Soviet Union, the fur-clad, middle-aged translator found her way to an unassuming shop three miles from the Kremlin claiming to sell nothing less than a whole new way of life.
NEWS
October 8, 1992 | MARY ROURKE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Henri Nouwen is one of the most popular writers and educators in his field, but most people have never heard of him. He has published 30 books, including his latest, "The Return of the Prodigal Son," new this fall from Doubleday. But he's never been on a big-time author's tour. When he taught at Yale, his classes were packed. At Harvard, his fame preceded him. But when he left academic life in the mid-'80s, he didn't go into politics, business or on the talk-show circuit.
NEWS
November 28, 1992 | CAREY GOLDBERG, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Every morning when he awakes and looks out the frosted window of his wooden cabin, Alexei Dobrovolsky intones: "Glory to the sun! Glory to the clan! Glory to the spirits!" The curtains of his home are embroidered with eight-armed swastikas to guard against evil spirits. Around his neck hangs a small pouch bearing soil from the burial plots of his relatives. And on Dec. 25, he will celebrate not Christmas but a far more ancient holiday, marking the rebirth of the sun after the winter solstice.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 20, 2014 | By Inkoo Kang
Arriving less than a week after the high-profile death of Pentecostal pastor and reality-show star Jamie Coots by snakebite, the religious thriller "Holy Ghost People" is well poised to exploit fears of an already misunderstood spiritual minority. "Holy Ghost People" takes its name from a 1967 documentary by Peter Adair that captures the soul of a politically progressive West Virginia congregation that handles snakes and speaks in tongues. Director Mitchell Altieri's disappointing feature makes nasty beasts of the very people Adair strived to humanize, portraying them as violent, intolerant hicks straight out of central casting.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 15, 2014 | By Chris Barton
There was a perverse sort of logic at work in the cultish U.K. band Spiritualized opening the reborn United Artists Theatre, now the lavish centerpiece of downtown's new Ace Hotel. The band never made the same impact on American pop culture as countrymen Oasis or Radiohead, but Spiritualized's 1997 album, "Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space," is still considered a musical high-water mark from that era. A blend of soaring psychedelic rock and symphonic grandeur, the album chronicles devastating heartbreak, obsessiveness and the need to self-medicate.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 13, 2014 | By Jean Merl
After longtime Rep. Henry Waxman survived an $8-million challenge from a deep-pocketed independent candidate in 2012, some political observers thought the Beverly Hills Democrat would not draw another substantial challenge this time around. But spiritual leader, best-selling author and friend of many in the entertainment industry Marianne Williamson has decided to seek Waxman's Westside-South Bay seat this year.  A longtime Democrat, Williamson has re-registered with "no party preference" so she can run as an independent.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 9, 2014 | By Gary Goldstein
"The Saratov Approach," based on the true story of two young Mormon missionaries who, in 1998, were kidnapped and held for a $300,000 ransom while serving in Saratov, Russia, should satisfy pious viewers looking for a dose of headline reality with their uplift. Others, however, may find much of this so-called spiritual thriller soft and preachy. The film's saving grace is its engaging leads, Corbin Allred and Maclain Nelson, who play, respectively, abductees Travis Tuttle and Andrew Propst.
NATIONAL
December 22, 2013 | By John M. Glionna
They were two veteran emissaries for a Los Angeles-based philanthropy, tasked with staging a clandestine operation to rescue a series of Native American spiritual artifacts from public sale half a world away. This month, Annenberg Foundation staffers Allison Gister and Carol Laumen found themselves making anonymous telephone bids at a Paris auction to secure rarities considered sacred by the Hopi and San Carlos Apache tribes in Arizona, including exotic mask-like visages that had been lost - some say looted - over the last century.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 17, 2013 | By Inkoo Kang
There's something dispiritingly familiar about "Dancing on a Dry Salt Lake," writer-director-star Dominique De Fazio's tale of a white man's journey into Native American mysticism. De Fazio plays Warner, a 40-something astronomer who heads out to the Californian desert after his live-in girlfriend dumps him for being too selfish. Warner crashes his car on the outskirts of San Bernardino County and ends up in a small community of European expats, among whom he develops a whole new personality (as a result of inconsistent writing, not as plot development)
NEWS
September 4, 1998 | TERESA WATANABE, TIMES RELIGION WRITER
Here at the Bodhi Tree Bookstore in West Hollywood, an intense search for life wisdom is underway. Amid the scent of incense and soft, melodious tunes of meditative music, aspiring entertainer Terrence Moore is exploring the esoteric religious texts of the ancient Egyptians and Sumerians. College student Dikla Benjamin is delving into the mysteries of the Jewish Kabbalah.
NEWS
December 12, 1990 | ELIZABETH MEHREN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
In nearby Lawrence, Robert Coles asked a fourth-grader if God ever gets tired. Quickly, and with animation, the child responded, "Maybe He does and maybe He doesn't," then added, "He's God, so He can't get tired." In Stockholm, Sweden, a 10-year-old boy told Coles he couldn't draw Jesus with the crayons offered to him. "The Lord is everyone's, so He's not white and He's not brown or black. He's all the skin colors and the eye colors. It's hard to imagine Him; that's why I'll just use a pencil."
ENTERTAINMENT
December 16, 2013 | By August Brown
Downtown L.A.'s new Ace Hotel is set to open Jan. 6 , and they're preparing to celebrate with a mighty, beautiful noise. The experimental British group Spiritualized will convene a full orchestra, choir and band to re-create its landmark 1997 album "Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space" on Feb. 14 at the new hotel's theater . It will be the first performance in the new space, a concert co-promoted by Goldenvoice and FYF. ...
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 3, 2013 | By Kim Christensen
Former supporters of the Kabbalah Centre have sued the Los Angeles-based spiritual organization for fraud, alleging the misuse of more than $1 million they contributed to a building fund and charitable causes. "Kabbalah Centre has engaged in a pattern and practice of raising funds … for the purpose of enriching itself and others associated with Kabbalah Centre," according to a complaint filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court by Carolyn Cohen, a San Diego County real estate broker and president of the Solana Beach Chamber of Commerce.
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