Sedona, Arizona is believed by many to be the “energy capital of the United States,” as it is surrounded by several energy vortexes.
For the uneducated, “energy vortexes” are swirling centers of mystical energy that come from the center of the Earth (duh). Because of this, Sedona has a booming new age tourist industry (pictured above).
I’m not a very spiritual person, and am frequently jealous of those who are, so I decided to head to the desert to explore these vortexes and try to have a spiritual awakening. Luckily for me, there are multiple companies in Sedona willing to take your money in exchange for guiding you on a vision quest.
I went with a company called Red Rock Tours, because they were the first thing that came up when I googled “vortex tour.” For just $105 (+ tax), they will take you for a three hour tour of Sedona’s most sacred mystical spots.
This is my tour guide, Mark, who is trained in both matrix energetics AND reconnection therapy. I don’t know what either of those things are, but they definitely sound pretty cool.
As we drove to our first location, Mark gave us a little bit of history on Sedona and the vortexes. Which was pretty TLDR, but the gist of it is: the Earth is covered in these things called “ley lines,” which are lines that energy moves in. When two lines cross each other, they create an “energy center,” which in the case of Sedona, manifests itself as a series of swirling “vortexes.”
Mark drove us out to the first vortex on our agenda, which was located by Sedona’s airport. He warned us, “you’ve gotta promise me you won’t do any levitating! The pilots really don’t like that.” Which was promising.
He told us that a minor miracle once happened here. He was taking a tour group that included a man from Texas whose arm had been crippled for seven years due to a stroke. (That’s Mark showing you what a crippled hand looks like. Just in case you were unsure.) After just a few minutes at the vortex site, the man was able to feel his arm tingling. A couple of hours later, he was able to raise it all the way above his head. Mark thinks it was DEFINITELY because of the energy, ”I do not believe in coincidence at all. In no way,” he told us.
Can you imagine how weird life must be if you don’t believe in coincidences, BTW? Like, a couple of days ago, I was walking in LA with my iPod on random, and the song “Stay” by Lisa Loeb came on, which was featured on the Reality Bites soundtrack, and I thought to myself, huh, I wonder what Janeane Garofalo is up to these days? at which point I realized I was standing directly outside the building where they filmed the opening of Romi and Michele’s High School Reunion, and I was like “woooooah,” because Janeane Garofalo is also in that movie. AND THEN, when I got home, I looked on the Daily Mail website, and there was a story about Garofalo, right there on the homepage. I don’t hear anything about JG for ten years, and then she’s there three times in one day. I guess what I’m trying to say is, if I were Mark, what the fuck would I think that meant?
Anyway. This is where the vortex is. Which was super nice. It looked like a desktop background, but IRL.
We were told that a lot of people feel a tingling when they’re there, or the hair stands up on the back of their neck.
I felt nothing, but Mark told us to go off and take some time by ourselves to try and connect with the energy. He told us, “It’s really about opening your chakras and being present and getting out of your left brain. Breathe and be in the moment.”
This is me breathing in the moment, trying super hard to get out of my left-brain. Turned out to be pretty tough. Mainly because I couldn’t remember which one was the right brain and which was the left brain. Based on the general hippie vibes, I guessed that it was the non-arsty one. So I tried to get way outta there.
BEFORE HE WAS A MURDERER, J.T. READY GAVE US A TOUR OF THE BORDER
When it was reported that a guy named Jason Todd Ready shot four people in Arizona—including a 15-month-old girl—and then himself, our hearts sunk, not just because of the sheer ugliness and horror of the tragedy, but also because we knew J.T. Ready. Or at least, we profiled him as part of a piece on the civilian militias patrolling the US-Mexico border we shot for our MTV show last year. J.T. was the leader of the “Ready Rangers” a group of self-appointed immigration enforcers who go around the desert with automatic weapons hoping to shoot Mexican drug dealers in the face. It was pretty clear from spending even a short amount of time with the guy that J.T. was a racist, a nutjob, and someone who had delusional fantasies about machine-gunning the bad guys like an action-movie hero. Even so, it’s a pretty big leap from that to actually doing what he did. It’s clear now that the guy had more twisted demons inside him than even the average gun-toting militia member. The cops are still sorting out what events led to the senseless death of four people, but in the next few days, we’re sure the shooting will serve to bring up old debates about Arizona’s incredibly lax gun laws (you can basically own a tank there) and the existence of these militias—if that isn’t already happening.
Watch our piece on J.T. Ready here