By Virato, Editor, Asheville
How I Got Here
To Be... The
Vortexes Native Americana
Science or Mystery?
here is a speeding up, time seems to move faster here...and I can feel it." ... "I don't know why I'm here." ... "I felt magically or mystically drawn to this area." These are some comments people in a 35 mile radius of Asheville, North Carolina can be heard making.
It happened to me the first time I drove here from Philadelphia. Heading southwest on Interstate 40, I "felt it" about 20 miles northeast of Asheville, as I approached Black Mountain, and I felt it again around Waynesville, and Maggie Valley, about 40 miles to the southwest...it's a feeling of lightness and love that seems to permeate the physical body. I felt like crying...like I had come home. Mystics say these are the vortex entrance portals...some say it is the cradle high valley between the mountain ridges...still others speak of extraterrestrials, and a heritage to Atlantis, whose people are said to have landed here after their demise...stories abound.
On the East and West, the area is embraced by two loving arms of the Appalachian range--The Blue Ridge Mountains and The Great Smoky Mountains. The mountains are considered the oldest range on the planet (over 4 millions years old), and thought to have once been as high as the Himalayas.
In fact, Mt. Mitchell, outside of Asheville-rising to over 6,684 ft, is the highest elevation east of the Mississippi River, and easily available as a landing base.
People who have spent time in the Rockies, the Himalayas, and other mountain ranges have said that although those other mountains are indeed majestic, they did not get "the nurturing feeling" they do from this area.
There is something quite powerful, mysterious and wonderful happening in this area...and it's happening fast! CBS News, Eye On America did a feature on the area, calling us "America's New Age Mecca." Like most TV programs, it covered more of the tinsel, but the program did reach over 43 million people.
Rolling Stone Magazine did a piece on Asheville in 2000, the New York Times did a feature on Asheville on September 8, 2002, and US TODAY did a 2 page feature in October 2003. The noted channeled entity Kwan Yin also talks about Asheville.
People from other so-called new age places like Sedona, Arizona; Santa Cruz, CA and Marin county, CA; Boulder, CO; Maui, HI; Seattle, WA, Ashland, OR, as well as many from Florida, and from all over the country, are flocking to the mountains of Asheville. Really flocking
In fact, since I've moved here, I would say that about half of the people I meet have been here less than a year, with many arriving a few weeks or days ago. In fact, it's the thing most everyone around here has in common.
For those who saw the science-fiction classic, Close Encounters Of The Third Kind, you know what I am talking about. People indeed are being "drawn" here.
Starting with myself, Virato, if you had said that I would be living in North Carolina, I would have told you you were nuts! Me, a Brooklyn-born-boy in the bible-belt, no way! That was in October 1994. What transpired from then is indeed part of the mysterious and magical dance taking place in this....America's most powerful vortex, and the doorway to another dimension of Universal existence. I had been seeking to move out of Philadelphia for some time. I visited places like Santa Cruz, Boulder, Gainesville, Great Barrington for a week or more at a time, yet never moved.
As if directed by some unseen force, in a one week period, in that memorable October of 1994, I received over 20 pieces of correspondence from North Carolina. I think only one piece was from Asheville itself. At the time I was Editor & Publisher of New Frontier Magazine. These letters were inquiring about advertising in the magazine, or about subscriptions, or about writing for the magazine, etc.
After phoning all of the people and companies, I was stunned to learn that they were all from the Asheville, North Carolina area. Every last one of those pieces of correspondence. This was way beyond coincidence. I shared this with a number of people in our Philadelphia office. I even had a mystical experience with a magical fellow I met in Philadelphia only a week before I was to leave that city. He was from Magee Valley, near Asheville! He was one of the most interesting people I had ever met in Philadelphia. And he was born and raised here
Like wanderers to a Promised Land, spiritually-minded people are being drawn inexplicably to the breeze- swept city of Asheville and it surrounding mountains. For many, it invokes a sense of coming home...
let's journey through this
The North Carolina state motto is Esse Quam Videre, which means "To Be, Rather Than To Seem."
It is as if whatever muse visited the early legislators who adopted that motto foresaw the region as a setting for the unfolding of a new paradigm of personal and cultural transformation. In the western portion of the state, where the French Broad River bends and winds through the startling beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains is Asheville, population about 80,000 (350,000 within a 40 mile radius), rapidly emerging as one of the world's most dynamic focal points for the individuals and organizations coalescing into a new society with love, advanced consciousness, healing abilities, and creativity. The city's motto of course is "Altitude Affects Attitude."
"If you feel drawn to visit or move to Asheville, helping to build a strong Community of Light of the next Millennium, you will be welcomed with open and loving arms."
|People who arrive here, who are also involved in matters of spirit and consciousness, are quickly and pleasantly disabused of obsolete notions regarding the political and religious climate of the south, or at least this part of the south. To be sure, the large fundamentalist Christian organizations in the region do not lack influence or membership, but neither is there the tension or enmity that so often occurs in areas where change and transformation are in full and rapid growth...|
CBS News blazoned the words "New Age Religion Comes To Bible Belt" a
decade ago, conscious and new thought spiritual people across America took note of
Asheville, North Carolina.
There's plenty here to attract aware folk...
The temperate climate (society and geology), and the peaceful strength of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains have to some extent permeated the consciousness of both native and immigrant alike, rendering the place, as well as the culture, fertile ground for transformation. And, underlying the potent spirituality exuded by the place itself is a power that seems to reach far beyond these ancient mountains to draw kindred souls home.
There is rarely anyone, even peripherally involved in New Age consciousness here, who does not have a story of remarkable synchronicities culminating in a move to Asheville. Few seem to have "moved" here, so much as they have "ended up," here as a result of serendipity, fluke or coincidence.
And with few exceptions, they are people whose lives are at an apogee of creative and spiritual flux. They seem to arrive at a time when their spiritual energy is high and their creative juices are flowing. Perhaps that at least partly explains why in the last few years there has been a phenomenally prolific and largely successful surge of spiritual and creative endeavor, not excluding New Frontier Magazine's move to the area in 1994..
I met a woman at a Unity Sunday service, an active participant in the new community who moved here a few years ago. She, like many others I have chatted with over the past years gave a similar story: "Everywhere I looked, I saw something about Asheville.
Word on the 'metaphysical street' hinted that Asheville was fast becoming the new spiritual Mecca," she shared.
Living in Sedona, Arizona at the time, she read an article in Arizona's major new age paper by the noted psychic and author, Page Bryant discussing the Blue Ridge Mountains of Asheville. Soon after reading the article by Bryant, she attended a conference in Colorado where prophecy futurist Gordon-Michael Scallion related an experience of flying over Asheville and seeing its future as one of the pivotal 'Cities of Light' for the new Millennium.
ince moving to Waynesville, NC, not far from Asheville, Page Bryant (who was spiritually told to leave Sedona to come here) has written the definitive metaphysical book about the area, The Spiritual Reawakening Of The Great Smoky Mountains. According to Bryant, there are many vortices (bioelectric energy points) spread across the planet. These vortices could be compared to acupuncture points on the human body. They are junctions of crossings of ley lines, or meridians, that cover the earth's surface. Some of these vortices are dormant, much the same as dry river beds, while some are awake or awakening. There are twenty-four active vortices between Black Mountain and Waynesville, and many more power spots. This is one of the most concentrated number of vortices and power points anywhere in this country...over 24 major ones!
|A vortex has a very high level of energy projecting in a relative small area,
whereas a power spot has a larger area with lower energy. Mt. Pisgah is the major
power spot of the area, where the Watcher, or Guardian Angel of this entire area
resides. Clingman's Dome on the
other hand in nearby Tennessee is a vortex with very powerful electromagnetic energy.
the potent spirituality exuded by the place itself is a power
The famed herbal extract and tincture company, Gaia Herbs, Inc. has chosen to move from up in Massachusetts to nearby Brevard, NC, Red Moon Herbals is in nearby Black Mountain, and this is the home of master herbalist, Corey-Pine Shane, and several herb schools. Many Wiccan folk have their own cottage industry herb businesses. This is ideal plush country for growing all sorts of herbs.
American Miso Company has been near here for 24 years (now a part of Great Eastern Sun, also located near Asheville. We even have the Kava Bar downtown Asheville, that indeed gives a "buzz." There are a number of dome structures going up all over the Asheville area, which seems to be in keeping with Gordon-Michael Scallion's (Earth Changes Report) predictions of the area. He foresaw many such domes housing healing centers, and saw people from all over the world would come here to be healed or to heal.
The Grove Street Healing Arts Center; Appalachian School of Holistic Herbalism, Moving Forward Alternative Health; The North Carolina School of Natural Healing; the Society of World Healers, Energy Medicine Clinic; The Source For Healing; The Lighten Up! Yoga Center, The Center for Effective Living and Biltmore Yoga Center are only a few of the many other healing centers in the area. From Black mountain to Waynesville, holistic health places seem to be opening weekly!
There are hundreds of individual practitioners offering just about every possible healing modality, from massage to psychotherapy, acupressure to Zen. Asheville's The AHA Directory includes nearly 600 listings of them. One particularly interesting place is A Cup of Tea located in West Asheville, rn n my wife and I and the thousands of devas of the region.
The climate of this area has long made it a place people come for healing. The town of Hot Springs, just minutes from Asheville, is fed directly from the earth's center with healing volcanic hot waters.
Dr. Paul Fleischer, a transpersonal psychologist, came to this area from San Francisco. Others like him have followed. He and his wife were drawn to Asheville because of its reputation as being the San Francisco of the South, and because of the aura of the mountains. We wanted to live in a place that has great natural beauty and a strong progressive community; Asheville was at the top of the list!
If you are into getting back to basics, there's the Mountain Barter Partners Network; Transformative Adventure Vacations; Earth Green Medicine Lodge; Southern Dharma Retreat; World's Edge Springs; The Organic Gourmet; and countless others All have a spiritual metaphysical atmosphere and essence.
However, just five minutes outside of Asheville, in any direction, will place you in the loving embrace of nature on some mountaintop. Many new age seekers have moved into log cabins with no telephone, television or other connection to the grid. There are still some Cherokee who live on the land in tents, urts, lean-tos, and yes, even teepees.
The rainbow nation is also deeply entrenched in these mountains,
or finding a crash pad downtown. Some, like Burton Smith, a former Krishna devotee, who
spent a winter in his teepee at Gypsy's End, a former witch hang-out in nearby
Weaverville. Many, many dormant gurus live in mountain cabins, some as small as a single
room, and some quite luxurious. They are beginning to come to town of late
As for the media, not only did New Frontier Magazine relocate to the area in 1994, but there's also Natural Awakenings, Asheville Magazine, Unity News, Asheville Holistic Alternatives , and other progressive publications in town. There are several local new age publishers. Ironwood Productions, an award-winning film and video company and a few other film companies have nested in Asheville as well.
Within a year after I arrived in the mountains, I hosted New Frontier On The Air, a new age talk radio program in Asheville on WSKY, a 3000 watt AM station, and got rave reviews until the owners decided to sell to a conservative fundamentalist Christian coalition ; however, I also came back and had a new age radio show on Clear Channel Broadcasting's "progressive" 880 AM The Revolution called VIRATO LIVE! five continuous years from 2005-2010, with three or more guests weekly. With streaming online, in addition to the 5,000 watt signal in the Asheville area, it is was heard by nearly 1/2 million people nationally every week! The revolutionary "people's" radio, WPVM, while only 10 watts has loyal listeners, as does URTV, the "people's" TV Channel 20 on local Charter Communications cable. And for movies, it has also been dubbed the Indie Movie Capital of America. For a few months in 2010, I was producer and host of VIRATO LIVE! on television, at URTV, broadcast on Charter Cable in Asheville.
For the space and metaphysical folk, CSETI, The Center for the Study of Extraterrestrial Intelligence; the Human Dimensions Institute; The Star Foundation; the Council of the Empyreum; and Dr. Colette M. Dowell, leading international researcher on Crop Circles, have relocated to this area.
Colette Dowell, author of Circular Times has been seen on Fox's Sightings, Encounters, NBC's The Other Side and other national TV programs. In addition to here Crop Circle work, Dr. Dowell also claims to be an alien abductee, and MRI scans have shown an implant in the center of her brain.
Another interesting person is Ma Deva Dhiraja who lives simply in West Asheville and has some interesting energy, and is also my wife. Another is Ra who claims to come with a message, and leads tours of the vortexes.
Most others are quite quiet about their UFO and "other dimensional" work in this area as well. Nearby Brown Mountain has been internationally examined for its "Brown Mountain Lights." Mysterious balls of lights that seem to come of the ground and move around. These have also been documented on shows such as Sightings.
And the radio program Speaking of Strange the paranormal show is also broadcast here on Saturday nights on WWNC in Asheville., and heard nationwide to an audience of over 5 million people every week
What's happening in Asheville goes beyond what has been termed by the traditional media as a subculture of consciousness.
Where business and political leaders of an Appalachian mountain town are being offered--and availing themselves of--such things as meditation classes, Sufi-based conflict mediation and primary and secondary education at the Odyssey School, or group consciousness training via drumming circles, dance and ritual, things have progressed beyond the transitory self-interests of a subculture, into the community at large, and that is the bright glint of a shifting paradigm, and why we have become a City of Light...
Evolution isn't always gradual and steady. It's sometimes a sequence of relatively sudden mutations alternating with protracted periods of adaptation. Those mutations almost invariably occur in hospitable environments, in places where successful adaptation is most likely. This holds in biology as well as in social structures and matters of individual and collective consciousness. That which is approaching its time of mutation, or transformation if you prefer, will be attracted to a place conducive to that process. Asheville is such a place, a spiritually potent context in which many are making the transformation from what seems to be to what is: Esse Quam Videre.
Living in Asheville has proven to be an enriching, healing and life-enhancing experience for thousands who have been called to this area. You are invited to listen with your heart and soul.
Special thanks to Walker Mozingo who wrote the infrastructure and much of the original article above.
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