Sylvia Browne in the new Age Context
Kleast, Ruth A.
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Rather than attempt to inquire about and discuss the vast elements of the New Age Movement by going through a variety of writers, I have chosen to approach it through the life and activities of the famous psychic, Sylvia Browne. I will use other authors, though, to describe and provide insight into the movement through its rejections, descriptions, and sources. I will also place Sylvia Browne into some of these discussions. I realize that she does not necessarily embody everything that could be said about the New Age Movement and also that those who may fall under the New Age category do not share all of the same beliefs and practices in which she participates. But such consistency is not a requirement of the New Age Movement; rather, it is the inconsistency in what is considered New Age, that is characteristic of it. I will also briefly consider the similarities between the New Age Movement and Theosophy. Another topic, which is relevant to the New Age Movement and to Sylvia Browne, is the well-known psychic Edgar Cayce. Edgar Cayce lived between the height of Theosophy and the New Age Movement's beginnings in the 1960's While he personally was never a member of either movement, those within both movements sought him out. (And in the case of the New Age Movement still seek him out). I will provide a description of his life and activities mainly to point out the context within which Sylvia Browne provides her new religion.