It’s time once again for Mind Body Spirit, affectionately known as the “Mind Body Wallet” festival. Take a deep breath, check your temper and let’s delve into what they have planned for us this time ’round.
Mind Body Spirit happens every 6 months in Sydney and the description on the website is as follows; “…Australia’s largest event for personal growth, natural therapies, alternative healing, self development, spiritual awareness and much more. See, try and buy hundreds of products and services for your total wellbeing: physical, mental and spiritual”.
This is a woo festival on a huge scale! With over 190 exhibitors, spiritual cinema, free seminars, free performance stage, free positive thinking a meditation centre, and of course it wouldn’t be the same without the psychics and clairvoyants. Accordingly, there is a psychic reading room with over 60 of the best clairvoyants, who will sting you $40 for a 25 min reading or $80 for 50 mins. This room is always packed and you are advised to book ahead. Back in May, this room was constantly buzzing. This year there are several seminars from the psychics featured on “The One” but before I delve into that, I want to bring to your attention, some of the more weird and wonderful exhibitors.
Noseworks are suppliers of a product known as Neti Pot (also known as Nasal Cleansing Pot or Jala Neti). This thing looks like a tea pot with an inverted spout. According to an instructional video on the website, you fill it with warm salty water and then flush your sinuses by pouring it up your nose!
And another website proclaims this process to be a “….simple solution to asthma, sinusitis, snoring, hay fever, blocked noses, sneezing, sinus headaches”. And even better, “It has a cooling and soothing effect on the brain and is therefore beneficial for headaches, migraine and general mental tension”. What? How does it get into your brain???
And there’s more… “Regular cleansing helps the eyes, ears and mind become clearer” and “It helps clear the mind giving you a sense of lightness and clarity which aids better concentration”
Go ahead and shove this thing up your nose if you wish. I know one thing, you will most certainly look silly, but as for the rest of the claims? Dubious to say the least. And the part about clearing your mind and cooling your brain? There is no basis in science for this. But wait, why listen to me? Apparently this thing has featured on Oprah, but then so has Tom Cruise and Jenny Macarthy…..
Nana Mays Magic Hands and Tea Cup Readings with Betty? Doesn’t this sound like a lovely old lady, straight out of the 1950s who makes you a “nice cuppa tea” and reads your leaves? I thought this stuff went out of fashion years ago. Hasn’t Betty heard of the “Coffee Oracle” by Stacey Demarco? We’ve gone espresso now my dear…As for Nana Mays Magic hands? No idea but I’ll be certain to check this one out.
All across the festival there are stalls and seminars espousing the benefits of drinking “alkaline water”. One is entitled “How water can cure incurable diseases” (grrr, misleading in the extreme), but when I did some further digging it’s just alkaline water again. And another; “Food intolerances, digestive enzymes and alkalisation”, which apparently will report on two new digestive enzymes that will greatly boost your digestive power? Digestive power? Sounds like a washing powder to me.
Proponents of this stuff claim;
“The negative ions in alkaline water are a rich source of electrons that can be donated to …free radicals in the body, neutralising them and stopping them from damaging healthy tissues”.
Nonsense, when you drink alkaline water, its alkalinity is quickly removed by the highly acidic gastric fluid in the stomach. And the body regulates it’s pH by buffering with bicarbonate ions and breathing off CO2. This is pure pseudoscience nonsense
Of course it wouldn’t be MB$ without the usual collection of psychics and this year there is a contingent from “The One – the search for Australia’s most gifted psychic” giving seminars such as, “Connecting with Spirit”, “Messages from Beyond” and “You too can be The One – how to develop your own psychic gifts”. These sounds decidedly normal stacked up against “Sonic re-birthing through sound therapy”, “The Atlantian pathway to Isis” and “Psychic spoon bending and Egyptian Alchemy”.
And folks, this is just the beginning of four days of the strange, the supernatural and the silly. Combined with the usual suspects, being the iridologists, chiropractors, Chinese medicine, reflexologists, aura capturers, angels, orb spotters, ear candles, etc. we are certainly in for an interesting experience.
I have an accompanying blog about MB$ on scepticsbook.com. Thanks to everyone who has been emailing me, I appreciate your feedback, comments and suggestions.